No business can succeed without understanding what is happening in their industry. This is especially true in the world of search engine optimization (SEO), where information is key to getting and staying ahead of the competition. Regardless of whether you're a startup or an enterprise business, competitive intelligence is essential to your SEO success. So for this blog post, we'll explore what competitive intelligence is, its importance to SEO, and why competitive intelligence drives SEO success.
Competitive intelligence (CI) is the practice of monitoring, gathering, and analyzing information about your industry, competitors, and market. The goal of CI is to help you make informed decisions about your business and strengthen it by understanding what is happening in your industry, what your competitors are doing, and what your customers want.
CI is not just about gathering data; it's also about understanding how that data can be used to improve your business. For example, if you know that a competitor is doing better than you in search engine results, you can use CI to figure out why and how to improve your own optimization or if a new product launch by a competitor is affecting your sales, you can use CI to better understand the market and develop a response strategy.
There are four main types of competitive intelligence that are important to SEO:
Marketplace intelligence is all about understanding the overall market and what is happening in it. This includes understanding current trends, the size of the market, what products and services are in demand, and who the major players are. This type of CI can help you identify new opportunities, understand customer needs and wants, and develop strategies to stay ahead of the competition.
Customers are the lifeblood of any business, so it's important to understand them as well as possible. Customer intelligence helps you learn about your target customer, what they want and need, their demographics, how they buy, and what their pain points are. This type of CI can help you develop better digital marketing strategies, improve your products and services, and find new ways to reach and serve your target market.
There are a lot of different products and services on the market, and it can be difficult to keep track of them all. Product and services intelligence helps you do just that by tracking what products and services your competitors offer, how they are positioning them, what features they are highlighting, and how they are priced. This information can help you develop strategies to differentiate your own products and services, improve your pricing, and better understand the needs of your target market.
It's not just what you do, but how you do it that matters. Marketing intelligence helps you understand your competitors' marketing strategy, what channels they are using, what messages they are sharing, and how they are connecting with their customers. This type of CI can help you develop more effective digital marketing campaigns, choose the right channels to reach your target market, and create messages that resonated with them.
Now that you understand what competitive intelligence is, it's easy to see why it's important to SEO. Here are three main reasons:
If you know what your competitors are doing and how they are doing it, you can develop strategies to outrank them. For example, if you know that a competitor is using a certain keyword in their title tags, you can use that keyword in your own title tags to improve your chances of ranking for that keyword.
The SERPs are constantly changing, and it can be difficult to keep up with all the changes. Competitive intelligence can help you understand how the SERPs are changing and what you need to do to stay ahead of the competition. For example, if you know that a competitor has recently added a new website, you can use CI to track their website's progress and learn from their successes and failures.
Competitive intelligence can help you develop better strategies in all areas of SEO, from keyword research to link building to content marketing. By understanding what your competitors are doing, you can develop strategies that are more effective and efficient. For example, if you know that a competitor is using a lot of low-quality links, you can focus your link-building efforts on high-quality links to improve your chances of ranking higher in the SERPs.
Your first step in conducting competitive intelligence research is to identify your competitors. Knowing who your competitors are is essential to understanding what you need to do to outrank them. You can use a variety of methods to identify your competitors, including:
Once you have a list of competitor websites, you can start conducting research on them to learn what they are doing that is helping them rank higher in the SERPs.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to competitive intelligence research, so you need to set objectives that are specific to your business and SEO goals. For example, you can start by focusing on asking yourself "What do we want to learn?" This will help you focus your research and ensure that you are looking for avenues that will give you the most useful information.
Once you have set your objectives, you need to determine how you will collect the data you need to achieve those objectives. There are a variety of data collection methods available, including:
Social monitoring and social listening tools can also be helpful in collecting data about your competitor's activities.
Gathering and analyzing the data is where the real work of competitive intelligence research comes in. The gathering process can be time-consuming, so it's important to have a plan for how you will collect and organize the data you collect. Once you have collected the data, it's time to start analyzing it. This is where you will look for patterns and trends that can help you understand what your competitors are doing and how they are doing it. This can be done manually or using a variety of software and tools that are designed for competitive analysis.
Once you have gathered and analyzed the data, it's time to take action. The first step is to develop a plan for how you will use the information you've collected. This plan should be based on your objectives and should be designed to help you achieve your goals. After you have developed your plan, you need to implement it and track the results to see if it is effective. If you're not seeing the results you want, you may need to adjust your plan or collect more data.
Competitive intelligence research is an essential part of any SEO strategy. By understanding your competitors and what they are doing, you can develop strategies that give you an edge in the race for rankings, help you understand the SERPs, and develop better strategies overall. If you're not already using CI in your SEO strategy, now is the time to start to make sure you're not left behind.
If you're not sure how to get started with competitive intelligence research, or if you want help gathering and analyzing the data, let a Denver SEO company help you. At Denver Digital Agency, we have years of experience in doing competitive intelligence and can help you develop a plan that will help you achieve your SEO goals. We have a team of experienced SEO specialists who can help you with all aspects of your SEO strategy, from keyword research to link building to content marketing. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you improve your SEO and reach your goals.