Digital marketing is all about explaining why a product is the best fit for a potential customer and what sets it apart from other products like it. Research is key to figuring out those differentiators, and a local organic competition analysis is an essential early step in defining your client’s business marketing strategy. Who are they up against? What do they do well, and what can be learned from them?
Use these five tips to analyze your client’s competition and develop a roadmap to implement their search optimization practices into your marketing strategy.
1. Identify their competitors
Could you name the main SEO rivals in your client’s area off the top of your head? If not, focus intently on their market, niche, and locale, and perform a deep local competition analysis.
Top SEO competitors are the ones who rank on the first search page of a keyword inquiry. Figuring out who your client’s competitors are is as simple as entering their top keywords into a Google search and writing down competing website addresses. You may be surprised to find competitors from a variety of business industries, but they are search competitors, nonetheless.
2. Determine keyword difficulty
Keyword difficulty is a metric used to determine how hard it is to rank for a specific keyword. When performing keyword research, look for keywords with good search volume, lower competition, and are highly targeted. SEO competitors with greater keyword difficulty will be harder to outrank in local search.
It’s also essential to consider the client’s market size. It will be more challenging to rank for specific keywords in Los Angeles, California, than it would be to rank in Tyler, Texas. Careful selection of your main keywords is vital to boosting your client’s SEO and garnering more online attention.
3. Analyze on-site content and optimizations
Analyzing the competitors’ on-site factors like content and page optimization makes it possible to develop a strategy that will effectively compete with theirs. This process can help you adapt your content strategy and beat them to the punch. Start by looking at a local competitor’s web content and take note of the following:
- Which audience are they writing for and why?
- What is the relevance of the content in their specific market area?
- How much social engagement does their content receive (shares, reviews, comments, etc.)?
Once you complete the analysis of their online content and how it’s marketed, apply any newfound practices to your client’s campaign and keep track of any setbacks or improvements.
4. Examine site structure and User Experience (UX)
Almost all the significant algorithmic changes we’ve seen over the past few years have focused on providing better mobile experiences, faster pages, and improved search results. If your client’s website is slower, less responsive, or harder to navigate compared to their competitors, add these opportunities for improvement to their roadmap:
- Optimize the sitemap for more straightforward navigation
- Prioritize page speed optimization
- Build the site with search intent in top-of-mind
If you notice their competitor’s site is outdated yet still ranking well, take this time to capitalize on the affordances of a modern website by making updates. The client’s potential customers will compare the sites and go with the more functional and aesthetically pleasing one.
5. Assess social media strategy
When conducting an organic search analysis, it’s imperative to compare traits, metrics, and optimizations of the competitor’s website and social presence with your clients. Take note of things like:
- Which platforms are they using (or not using)?
- How often do they publish new content?
- How do they communicate with followers?
- Which types of content get the most engagement?
Track the competitors’ linkless mentions, user reviews, and other engagement metrics as well to see what their customers like about their product or service. These insights will play a significant role in creating a more refined social media strategy for your client, and in turn, boosting their SEO ranking.
After a deep competitive analysis, apply your findings to the client’s campaign. Continue to make minor improvements, keep tabs on competitors, and monitor their rankings. Rinse and repeat – always research and learn from the competition to implement similar or better strategies and increase your client’s search visibility.
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