7 Tools To Uncover Marketing Strategies Of Your Competition

Abhishek Ekbote

I write blogs & let our team build GreyMetrics. I’m the Founder of GreyMetrics.

What’s Competition Analysis?

If you own a business, either offering products or services, online or offline, it is likely that you have a competitor.

Staying at the top of the game requires a robust understanding of the market. A robust understanding entails knowing your customer, your product and your competitors.

Competitor analysis is a strategy that helps you identify and evaluate competitors based on their strengths and weaknesses. 

Why Spy on Competition?

Competitor analysis helps you understand what customers want, what is working for your competitors and what is not.

This gives a good base to formulate your business strategy on.

Using such an analysis can also uncover gaps in the market, giving you an opportunity to leverage the gap and improve your products.

Competitor analysis is completely legal and is a great learning tool.

It helps identify strategies that are working in the market and those that are not.

Apart from strategies, a comprehensive review will also give insight into aspects of the product or service itself that is most loved or loathed by customers.

A competitive analysis illustrates current market trends, provides a good yardstick to measure growth against and helps you sell effectively

How to do it? The best tools that do the job

1) Ahrefs

An incredible SEO tool, Ahrefs’ features include comprehensive analysis of Keywords research, Keyword generator and backlink mentions.

This will help you evaluate the keywords your competitors are ranking for on search engines, their search volume and traffic generated by your competitor.

These numbers are estimated but are close variants of real data

Key features include:

  • Information about your competitors’ position in Google
  • Performance of specific content- its shares on social media, number of links and number of articles linking to it.
  • Backlink audit tool to analyse links referring to a URL and their quality
  • Backlinks report to check the types of backlinks to your competitor and where they’re acquired from
  • Monitor link prospects from your competitor
  • New backlinks- identifying new bloggers/writers in the market who can review your product
  • Keyword research – Track, find and validate keywords

By analysing where your competitor is getting their backlinks from, you can tweak your strategy to make a better link acquisition strategy.

Information from the backlink report can also be used to expand opportunities and source new links. 

Keyword research is an incredibly powerful tool that will help you understand your competitors’ ranking with reference to specific keywords and the traffic it generates for them.

This information provides the landscape for your competitors priorities and gives you the chance to spot inadequacies that can be used to your advantage.

Pricing – 7 Day Free Trial for $7; Starts from $99/mo

(SEMRush is a similar tool which allows you to do majority of the steps listed) 

2) BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is a content analysis tools that shows how your content compares against your competitors’.

BuzzSumo gives insight into a competitors’ most shared content, the influencers that drive their shares and a platform-wide report.

Thus, you can not only see where they rank top in engagement (for example Twitter or Facebook) but also compare your stats with theirs’ on these platforms. 

Apart from competitor analysis, you can also use BuzzSumo to find the trending content in your market and discover new titles and competitors.

Trending content hints at the titles, format and subjects that appeal to your market audience within a time frame.

As content creation is one of the best ways of improving SEO, you can also use this tool to fish new blog ideas, content creation tools and customer engagement opportunities.  

BuzzSumo can also be used as a media monitoring tool, by giving you alerts every time a competitor is mentioned, or its’ content is shared on the web.

Furthermore, you can also see who is sharing your competitors’ content

In summary, BuzzSumo –

  • shows the most shared content within your category
  • helps compare the performance of your content against your competitors’
  • helps discover trending topics within a niche
  • uncovers potential competitors
  • performs extensive social media analysis 
  • creates alerts every time a competitor is mentioned on the web

Pricing – Starts from $99/mo

3) SimilarWeb

SimilarWeb provides you with your competitors’ analytics, their online strategy and helps you monitor your industry.

Using their competitive benchmarking feature, the performance of your website and apps can be compared to those of your competitors. 

SimilarWeb shows where your competitors’ traffic comes from (sources of traffic – paid, social, organic, direct etc), their market share and growth over time.

This information can be used to gauge a comprehensive picture of the competitors’ digital media strategy. 

Furthermore, like BuzzSumo, this tool also shows your competitions’ well-performing and poorly performing content. This can be used as inspiration for future blog articles.

SimilarWeb’s analysis tool shares information on ad-displays-so you can find out what type of advertisements work in a particular market and which do not. 

Websites that host a competitors’ ad or gain them significant amounts of traffic can also be used by you as potential space.  

Using the free version of SimilarWeb you can gauge:

  • Sources of a competitors’ traffic- The types of visitors your competitor attracts i.e. paid, referred or organic, and their total numbers.
  • Volume of traffic- The amount of website traffic your competitor acquires, which can be used to reasonably estimate market share. 
  • Ad-display- The types of advertisements put up by a competitor and the space used to display them.

The paid version gives information on:

  • App data Engagement
  • Keyword Analysis
  • Industry Analysis
  • Unique Visitors 
  • Multiple Users

Using SimilarWeb gives you complete access to you competitors’ traffic stats, their         online strategy and marketing campaigns.

You can use the information to target specific audiences that are likely to turn into customers.

In addition, your online strategy can be revised according to the competition in the market and you can save valuable dollars by investing in reliable, high-return ad-spots.    

Pricing – Free Plan & Enterprise (Call)

4) SpyFu

SpyFu helps you track specific competitors by listing every keyword they have ever ranked for and the add variations they have used since 11 years ago.

They also analyse the most profitable keyword for you by analysing your top 3 competitors’ keywords.

It also gives you information about the paid traffic on a competitors’ website and information on the keywords they have purchased on Adwords.

In addition, you can also track their changes in ad spending and explore suggestions for keyword groups.  

Pricing – Starts from $39/mo  

5) Facebook Ad Library

Facebook Ad Library is a free tool by Facebook.

This tool can be used to view all the ads run by a Facebook page. That is so cool !

Marketers use the ad library to view ads run by competitors to get competitive intelligence. Ad copy, Ad creative & Targeting geographies can be discovered.

You will get a reasonable understanding of Facebook Ad strategy of your competition.

Pricing – Free

6) Owletter

Owletter is a tool that analyses and stores email sent from a website.

It creates a user-friendly dashboard of all the email from competitors, picking up on a change in email frequency and email trends.

It is a great tool to understand your competitors’ email-marketing strategy and alerts users on major insights. 

With Owletter you can:

  • Learn if your competitor has a reputation for spamming
  • Analyze their email schedules and trends
  • Glean into the content of the emails
  • Have the total number of emails sent by a competitor
  • Analyze email strategies to compose better emails.

Owletter Pricing – Starts from $19/mo  

7) BuiltWith 

BuiltWith is a business intelligence tool that identifies key market segments using technologies used by companies & approx tech spend to build a list of sales prospects.

In addition, it also provides a list of plugins, scripts and backend technologies used by a website.

It is particularly useful for technology businesses as it provides details of not only the technologies used by your competitor but also how the competitors’ clients use their technology. 

Builtwith Pricing – Starts from $295/mo

The tool-kit needed to uncover hidden strategies & marketing traffic sources is powerful when implemented across organization.

With the tools in your armoury, slice & dice competition’s marketing strategy & find the perfect strategy for your business. 

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Abhishek Ekbote

I write blogs & let our team build GreyMetrics. I’m the Founder of GreyMetrics.

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