How to Do an SEO Competitor Analysis

By Mashum Mollah September 12, 2019 Form Image 1529 Views

SEO Competitor Analysis

It is impossible to avoid competition when in business. In fact, most of the leading business experts will tell you that competition is healthy in all industries. Let no one cheat you that you are lucky when you are part of an organization that has minimal or no competition. The most important thing is to do an SEO competitor analysis. Such an exercise will give you a better understanding of your industry. Competition is good because it encourages innovation and prevents complacency.

The competition also forces people to do better in all aspects of their business. It can be from customer satisfaction to sales to development. It will make you think out of the box so that you can stand out from the competition.

The case is similar when you are looking for ways to beat your competitors in search. This article will take you through some of the best practices for identifying the top competitors for your brand. You need to discover why they outrank you and look for ways of managing the situation.

We can put all these into a single phrase: SEO competitor analysis. Competitive analysis will not be complete without SEO tools. However, this guide will not mention most of them. It is advisable to do more research on the tools that you can use in SEO competitor analysis.

You need to combine these tips with the right competitor research tools. However, we cannot assume that everyone knows the meaning of SEO competitor analysis. Let us begin by defining this phrase before we can focus on how to do an SEO competitor analysis.

What is SEO Competitor Analysis?

Most people rely on a keyword tool to tell them the competitiveness of the keyword they are targeting. It is one of the common mistakes you will find in SEO.

The tern keyword competition refers to the level of difficulty you go through when ranking for a particular keyword. It tells you the number of websites that you need to beat to get at the top of the SERPs.

Several factors influence the competitiveness of any keyword. These include the overall popularity of the keyword and competitiveness level within the industry. Therefore, you should no longer rely on basic keyword tools. Take into account the whole competitive landscape to tell how hard it is to rank for a specific keyword.

SEO competitor analysis is the process of assessing how the top rankings perform regarding the most critical SEO factors. The process entails the use of niche-related keywords. It gives you an overall view of your competitors and the location of your opportunities.

SEO competitor analysis tells you how you are performing w.r.t your main competitors. By design, SEO has a competitive factor that you cannot overlook. You may want to rank high, claim the most significant ROI, but spend less.

You cannot do this unless you know your current position w.r.t your competitors. You should know the resources that your competitors are using. Also, evaluate the progress you are making to enhance your ranking. Look at the affordable things you can do to outrank your competitors.

Thoroughly analyzing all these factors will create golden keyword opportunities to help you grow your traffic. SEO competitor analysis also helps you to point out the immense RIO opportunities that you have.

The high search keywords may be having low search volume and yield the desired results. Know how the competitors are using the keywords to rank highly. It will help you to develop practical strategies on how to beat your competitors. A thorough SEO competitor analysis will give you access to these golden nuggets.

Read more: The Advanced Guide To SEO: Top Tips From Experts

How to do an SEO Competitor Analysis:

1. Identify Your Competitors:

SEO Competitor

There are high chances that you know the major players in your industry. However, you could be unable to identify your crucial SEO rivals. It is an excellent starting point if you want to do an SEO competitor analysis.

These two elements are not necessarily the same. You could be having several SEO competitors who are outside your niche. There may be a great need to contend with these competitors in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).

For example, a grocery in India will be competing with other grocery stores in ranking for a top position in the SERPs. All of them would be targeting the same keyword like “best groceries in India.” It is good to identify these competitors so that you can know who you are fighting for the same market.

However, the same grocery could also be trying to rank for a useful how-to blog. It will be competing with several publishing giants such as Taste of Home and Food Network. Therefore, you should think out of the box when looking for competitors.

Some of the non-niche firms can reduce your chances of getting to the top position in the SERPs. This fact stands irrespective of your industry. The top SEO competitors are the ones who rank highly on the first page of the search results.

The firms target the same keywords as yours even if they are not your competitors in business. If your brand operates in multiple niches, you could be having distinct lists of competitors for every service that you offer. Some of them could be having little to no overlapping between them.

2. Evaluate Keyword Difficulty:

Keyword Difficulty

Before you start to analyze specific on-page SEO or link building strategies, you should evaluate the strength of the current SEO competitors. Theoretically, you can beat out any competitor for any keyword and in any niche.

However, the amount of resources that some keywords require makes it unfeasible. SEO competitor analysis tools will help you to look at the total domain strength of your competitor.

Some of the specific factors to analyze are social signals, traffic volume, Alexa rank, domain authority, and backlink data. You also need to analyze the catalogue listing, indexing in the search engines, age and domain country.

Note down all the available information and search for any weaknesses that you can use to your advantage. The most challenging SEO competitors have strong SEO, and these are harder to outrank. Look for competitors who have excellent ranking scores for your niche keywords.

3. Search for New Keyword Opportunities:

New Keyword Opportunities

TF-IDF i.e., Term Frequency-Inverse Document Frequency analysis is a useful technique to enrich your current content with the right keywords that your competitors are using. It will help you to optimize your pages for the search engine in the right way.

It will also help you to discover the low-competition keywords that you could be missing out in your campaigns. The term frequency in TF-IDF means that it measures the number of times the keyword appears on a page. It multiplies this with the number of times that keyword should be appearing on your page (i.e., inverse document frequency).

While analyzing TF-IDF, you may discover that most of the pages that rank top for the target keywords shares several similar phrases and terms. If you are not targeting those topic-relevant terminologies, you may have to include them on your current applicable pages.

You may also create new content that boosts your level of relevance in the semantic searches. This concept is more complicated than the other SEO competitor analysis strategies in this article. However, it is a crucial part of developing a comprehensive content strategy.

For instance, using TF-IDF will give you a lot of information about the “coffer brewing recipes” keyword. It always contains particular info about various roasting techniques, coffee bean blends, and types of filters.

4. Analyze On-Site Content and On-Page Optimization:

Analyze On-Site

You can analyze the on-site SEO of your competitors by using your SEO competitor analysis tool. It will give you great insights that you can use in your campaigns. You will learn the number of times they are publishing content. You will also discover the type of content they are posting and the keywords that they are targeting.

Pay close attention to the Metadata and the headline strategies that they are using. Look at the keywords in the title, title length, and proper title tags, among others. Also, unravel the internal linking strategies that they are using. The information will be your benchmark for your on-site SEO efforts.

Check what they are doing well and the lessons you can learn from that. You also need to look at what they are missing out so that you can do better.

You have to keep track of several things while analyzing content. Look at the depth of the details that it covers and word count or video length. Also, look at the type of media or content that they are creating. Also, look at the topical relevance of the content on the competitors’ websites. When Googlebot is crawling your site, all these things play a critical role.

Read more: Complete On-Page SEO Checklist Guide for 2019

5. Dig into the Backlinks of Your Competitors:


Figuring out the source of your competitor’s backlinks is a crucial component in SEO competitor analysis. You can use this information in building high-end links for your site.

You can get new linking opportunities by dissecting the link profiles of your opponents. You will also require a robust SEO analysis tool for this step. It is not possible to pull out this information manually.

6. Examine the UX and Site Structure of Your Website:

Google is extremely keen when it comes to enhancing the user experience. Almost all the changes in algorithms for the past few years focus on making the user experience better. It entails improved search results, faster pages, and better mobile experiences.

Your website could be unresponsive or slower than that of your competitors. Also, you may have confusing navigation on your website. If this is the case, you need to take appropriate corrective actions.

The first thing is to optimize your sitemap to get better crawl ability. Prioritize the optimization of your page speed especially on high-value landing pages. Be keen to build all the elements on your website with the intention of the searcher in mind.

Taking a look at the landing pages of your competitors will tell you how they are doing. Asses their click depth and check whether they have orphan pages. You also need to check on the PageRank distribution for their website.

You can analyze the competitor site and discover they are ranking well but have terrible mobile optimization and an outdated website. It will be a prime opportunity that you can use to outrank them in the SERPs.

7. Learn How Your Competitors are Leveraging Social Media:

Leveraging Social Media

There is a hot contest on the exact intersection of social media with SEO. However, it is one of the most important elements of a healthy SEO strategy. The reason is that excellent social listening tools tell you everything that your competitors are doing on social media.

There is so much that the best social listening tools will allow you to achieve. It tracks link-less mentions and engages with your audience to increase the traffic on your website. It also allows you to track the mentions of your brand outside social media.

The social media tool will monitor new forums, blogs, and sites. You can monitor several easy types of research on social media. You will know the social media platforms that your competitors are using. It will tell you the frequency of publishing new content and how they communicate with the follower.

These tools will help you to tell the content that gets the highest level of engagement. You may also wish to track user mentions, link-less mentions, and PR. It will help you to know what customers love about the company’s products or services. It will also tell you what you need to do better.

8. Try to Analyze the Ad Spend of Competitors:

analyze Competitors

After you do all that you can to optimize your site, you may still not perform well in the SERPs. Your competitors could be beating you in the use of paid traffic campaigns to increase sales and conversions. Don’t try to copy and paste everything in the spending of your competitors.

However, you can come across valuable paid posts, banner ads, promoted content, and Google Ad campaigns. It will help you know how your competitors are spending on paid advertising. It is an excellent strategy in SEO competitor analysis.


Once you have an excellent strategy for SEO competitor analysis, you should look for ways of keeping at it. Continue keeping tabs on the competition, making small improvements, and monitoring your ranking. Your hard work will begin to pay off in the long run, and you will start to see improvements in your position.

If you need any help with SEO competitor analysis for your brand, feel free to contact. The company has SEO experts who will help you in this situation.

General FAQ:

1. What is SEO competitor analysis:

It is the process of learning what your competitors are doing and finding out the best practices to help you rank better than them.

2. How should I perform SEO competitor analysis:

You need online tools to perform SEO competitor analysis. Most of these online tools give you comprehensive information about your competitors.

3. Is there a limitation on the number of competitors to research:

Some tools have a limit on the number of searches you can make while others don’t. The secret is to choose a tool that will give you the best service.

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Mashum Mollah

I am so grateful that you have taken the time to consider collaborating with Viacon to serve you. While we are proud of our work and the results we will help you achieve … it is the relationships we build that will endure. I look forward to working closely with you and your team.

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