When starting a new project or entering a new niche the first thing to do is to find out which sites you are going to compete with.
The first step to take is to actually find who to compete with and then work on the list researching the competitors' tactics. This post is about this very first step: building the initial list of your most successful competitors:
One of the tools inside Compete.com is actually a competitor list builder that helps you find your competitors for your main term.
Take a note of the respective tool features:
- The tool only has data for high-traffic keywords, so it needs to be used only for your main term;
- You can select between the broad and exact match.
- Basic users have access to the following data:
- 5 top competitors;
- The "Volume" of each one (represents the share of an individual Site's total search traffic that is generated by this keyword).
- "Search Referrals Share" of each one (which is the share of total search traffic (90 day moving average) generated to the destination website by a specific keyword).
- "Average Monthly Search Referrals" of each one (which is the three-month average of the total volume of search referrals that a site receives).
At least one of the words in your query has to contain more than three characters. (This means you won't be able to check your happy competitors who rank for word "SEO" :))
Data sources: Compete’s clickstream data are collected from a 2,000,000 member panel of US Internet users (about a 1% sample), using diverse sources.
Free versus Paid: The service offers quite a few plans with free one being quite limited. A basic user can only see top 5 competitors and top 5 keywords.
SEMRush has recently enhanced features available for basic (and even unregistered) users. For any given URL it generates a large list of competitors but hides additional information traffic details, position quality, etc.
The competition-relevant features include:
- Find your top competitors in organic search and PPC (Google);
- Choose one of the available territories to target your search: USA, UK, Russia, Germany, France, Spain.
Data sources: Google
Free versus Paid: Basic members get access to the list of competitors but won't see some advanced stats like keyword position quality and traffic.
This is the most basic tool of all. I developed it with the idea to make cross-SERPs domain analysis easier. What it actually does is going through a number of related search results pages and finding domains that got ranked for several of close terms.
The competitive research features include:
- See domains that have found for up to ten related searhes;
- See which pages of each domain got ranked and where.
You can also go one step further and apply advanced search command to find domains that have key terms in title tags or anchor text:
Data sources: Google
Free versus Paid: basic members can only select to scan up to ten top search results. Besides, they cannot retrieve some SEO-relevant information in bulk. Both the groups can export results to a CSV file to further build research.
After you have your list of competitors, you can learns their strong and weak tactics to build your marketing strategy and get inspired!
Ann Smarty is an SEO Consultant who blogs on SEO, social media and general Internet Marketing topics.
Post image by ZeroOne
7 thoughts on “How to Build the Initial List of Your Top Competitors”
Nice article Ann! Definitely good to do thorough competitor analysis!
Awesome! I’ve noted down those links which I’ll go through today. I’m always keen to find out which of my competitors are lingering around 🙂 Thanks again!
Competitive research is critical to deevloping an effect market research plan.
Im going to check out SEMRush today as it looks like a pretty cool site from the way you described it. Also, Websitegrader is another way to find or keep track of competitors.
.-= Joshua Pitts recently posted: Reason’s Why Google Beats Bing =-.
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