Competitor Monitoring

Competitor Monitoring Guide For Businesses & Marketers

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CONTENTS

Competitor monitoring helps businesses stay one step ahead of the competition. By analyzing your competitors’ websites, you can get a sense of what opportunities you could take advantage of, any risks you need to mitigate, and how to drive growth.

This guide will cover various aspects of competitor monitoring, offering practical insights and recommended competitor monitoring tools for each area.

Types of Competitor Monitoring

  1. Strategic Business Monitoring
  2. Product and Technological Innovations
  3. Sales and Marketing Monitoring
  4. SEO and Content Monitoring
  5. Social Media & Ad Tracking
  6. Customer and Employee Engagement
  7. Regulatory Compliance Monitoring
Below we delve into each type of competitor monitoring in more detail.

1. Strategic Business Monitoring

Strategic business monitoring gives business leaders a high-level overview of your competitors’ market position and financial health, helping you understand their overall business strategy. 

It allows you to:

  • Understand where your competitors stand in the market.
  • Evaluate the financial stability and profitability of competitors.
  • Understand competitors’ long-term strategies.

Here are the main aspects we recommend you monitor, including tools we recommend:

Market Share Monitoring

Monitoring your competitors’ market share and positioning gives you an insight into their strengths and weaknesses in the marketplace. Knowing this allows you to respond, seizing any opportunities and adapting to protect your business against any risks.  

How to do this:

Analyze traffic sources, audience demographics, and market share distribution. Use the insights you gather to identify market opportunities and adjust your positioning.

Recommended tools:

  • SimilarWeb: Offers competitive analysis of website traffic, sources, and audience demographics.
  • Comscore: Delivers digital audience and advertising metrics for precise market share analysis.

Finiancial Health Tracking

By monitoring how financial healthy your competitors, you can gain insights into their stability and understand what strategic moves they might make next. Financial stable companies may be more likely to focus on growth and feel confident to take risks. While less stable companies might be looking to consolidate and maintain their market position.  

How to do this:

Review your competitors’ financial statements, stock performance, and earnings reports to assess their financial stability and potential for growth or decline. 

Recommended tools:

  • Yahoo Finance: Provides access to financial statements, stock performance data, and historical financial information.
  • Seeking Alpha: Offers detailed financial analysis, earnings reports, and expert commentary.

Corporate Governance

Tracking corporate governance changes can reveal strategic shifts and leadership impacts. Significant shifts in a company board and new senior hires may herald a new strategic direction, so it’s worth keeping tabs on this and pre-empting any change in the market.

How to do this:

Track changes in leadership, significant strategic decisions, and governance structures to gain a good understanding of your competitors’ strategic direction, values and performance. 

Tools:

  • BoardEx: Tracks leadership changes, board members, and their professional backgrounds.
  • Bloomberg: Provides comprehensive business and financial information, including executive changes and company governance.

2. Product & Technological Innovations

Keeping a close eye on your competitors’ product innovations helps you stay aware of any competitor advancements and allow you adapt and respond proactively. A new technological release may cause big disruptions or opportunities in your industry, so it’s important to stay as up to date as you can.

It allows you to:

  • Track new products and features launched by competitors.
  • Identify new technologies introduced by competitors that could disrupt the industry.
  • Quickly adapt to and leverage new opportunities or mitigate disruptions.

Here are the main aspects we recommend you monitor, including tools we recommend:

Product & Service Offerings

Keeping track of changes in your competitors’ products and services helps you understand their strategic focus, market demands and any new markets they are entering. The launch of a new or enhanced product or service will affect the market, so it’s good to understand how the market is changing and how it affects your own positioning.  

How to do this:

Track product updates, new feature releases, and customer feedback. Use these insights alongside your own product insights to improve your product offering and identify market gaps you can fill. 

Recommended tools:

  • Owler: Provides company insights, including updates on product launches and competitive intelligence.
  • Product Hunt: Tracks new product releases and trends across various industries.

Technological Advancements

Staying informed about technological innovations can give you a competitive edge. For example, you can choose to adopt the new technology, choose to differentiate yourself by developing a competing technology, or invest in improving existing technology. 

How to do this:

Track new technology adoptions, patent fillings, and innovation trends. Evaluate which technologies you want to integrate into your operations and product development.

Recommended tools:

  • CB Insights: Tracks technology trends, startup activities, and innovation in various industries.
  • Crunchbase: Provides data on companies’ funding, investments, and technological advancements.

Operational Monitoring

Analyzing the operational strategies of your competitors can help you benchmark, identifying best practices, inefficiencies, and areas for improvement in your own operations. 

How to do this:

Examine the supply chain efficiencies, logistics, and production methods of your competitors. Analyze the findings and optimize your operations accordingly.

Recommended tools:

  • Panjiva: Offers insights into global supply chains and trade activities.
  • ImportGenius: Provides detailed import and export data for analyzing competitors’ supply chains.

3. Sales & Marketing Monitoring

It’s important to understand how your competitors are approaching their sales and marketing strategies. It can help you evaluate and refine your own strategy for attracting and retaining your customer base more effectively. 

It allows you to:

  • Analyze how competitors sell their products or services.
  • Understand competitors’ marketing tactics.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of competitors’ sales and marketing strategies.

Here are the main aspects we recommend you monitor, including tools we recommend:

Sales Tactics & Distribution Channels

If you want to understand more about how your competitors are reaching their customers and optimizing their sales processes, it’s important to keep a close watch on their sales tactics and distribution channels.

How to do it:

Assess your competitors’ sales methodologies, distribution networks, and customer acquisition strategies. Use these competitive insights to refine and adapt your own sales tactics and consider expanding your distribution channels.

Recommended tools:

  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator: Helps identify sales prospects and understand competitors’ network connections.
  • ZoomInfo: Provides detailed information on companies’ organizational structures, contact information, and sales strategies.

Pricing Strategies

Tracking competitor pricing strategies helps you stay competitive while maximizing your revenue. It’s essential to understand how you are perceived by customers when it comes down to pricing.

How to do this:

Analyze pricing models, discount strategies, and promotional offers your competitors are utilizing. Adjust your pricing strategies to better compete in the market.

Recommended tools:

  • Price2Spy: Monitors competitor pricing, price changes, and promotions.
  • CamelCamelCamel: Tracks price history and fluctuations on Amazon, useful for e-commerce competitors.

Marketing Strategies

Gaining insight into your competitors’ marketing strategies will help you understand what tactics they are using, which tactics are paying off and what their overall market approach is.

How to do it:

Evaluate your competitors’ content marketing efforts, ad campaigns, and traffic sources. Adjust your marketing campaigns accordingly to capitalize on any gaps or weaknesses identified in your competitors’ strategies.

Recommended tools:

  • SEMrush: Provides insights into competitors’ organic and paid search strategies, including keywords and traffic sources.
  • Hootsuite: Strong for monitoring competitors’ social media activities, tracking engagement metrics, and managing social media campaigns.

4. SEO & Content Monitoring

To remain competitive online, you’ll need to understand how big your competitors’ digital presence is, which areas they dominate, and how you can capitalize on any weaknesses in their online visibility strategy and engagement tactics. 

This allows you to:

  • Gauge the size and scope of competitors’ online presence.
  • Identify key areas where competitors excel in content creation.
  • Find weaknesses in competitors’ SEO and content strategies.

Here are the main aspects we recommend you monitor, including tools we recommend:

SEO Monitoring

Monitoring your competitors’ SEO and content strategy provides insights into their organic visibility and engagement tactics. It allows you to gain insights in their onsite and offsite SEO strategies.

How to do it:

Evaluate your competitors’ content strategies, backlink profiles, and overall SEO activity. Scrutinize these insights and adopt any success tactics to enhance your own SEO strategy.

Recommended tools:

  • Rankalyzer: Monitors top-ranking competitors and tracks SEO-related content and backlink changes.
  • Ahrefs: Analyzes competitors’ backlinks, keywords, and organic search traffic.

Content Analysis

Understand what content pieces perform best and what opportunities exist within your niche by analyzing your competitors’ content strategies.

How to do it:

Examine the types of content competitors produce, their frequency, and engagement metrics. Plan, create and optimize content that fills any content gaps and outperforms competitor content.

Recommended tools:

  • BuzzSumo: Analyzes the performance of competitors’ content across various platforms, highlighting top-performing pieces.
  • ContentStudio: Provides insights into content trends, engagement metrics, and competitor content strategies.

5. Social Media & Ad Tracking

Monitoring your competitors’ social media presence and advertising strategies helps you understand their engagement tactics and how they allocate their marketing spend, helping you understand how to refine your own strategies for better reach and ROI.

This allows you to:

  • Analyze competitors’ social media activity and engagement.
  • Understand how competitors allocate their ad budgets and target audiences.
  • Improve your own reach and ROI by learning from competitors.

Here are the main aspects we recommend you monitor, including tools we recommend:

Social Media Activities

Track your comptitors’ social media activities to understand which content gains the most traction and which platforms return the best engagement in your niche.

How to do this

Evaluate your competitors’ social media strategies, engagement rates, and content performance. Optimize your own social media strategy based on the insights you find to improve your engagement, reach and following.

Recommended tools:

  • Emplifi: Tracks competitors’ social media performance, audience engagement, and content effectiveness.
  • Brandwatch: Provides comprehensive analysis of competitors’ social media mentions, sentiment, and trends.

Digital & Offline Advertising

Analyzing competitors’ advertising strategies provides insights into their marketing spend, targeting, and creative approaches.

How to do it:

Assess competitor’s ad spend, creative strategies, and campaign performance. Refine your own advertising strategies to maximize ROI and effectiveness.

Recommended tools:

  • Adbeat: Tracks competitors’ digital advertising campaigns, including spend, placements, and ad creatives.
  • Pathmatics: Provides detailed analysis of competitors’ online ad placements, creatives, and spend.

6. Customer & Employee Engagement

Monitoring customer and employee engagement helps you understand how competitors manage their relationships with customers and staff, influencing satisfaction and loyalty.

This allows you to:

  • Evaluate how competitors interact with and retain customers.
  • Understand how competitors foster a motivated workforce.
  • Enhance your own engagement strategies by benchmarking against competitors.

Here are the main aspects we recommend you monitor, including tools we recommend:

Customer Reviews & Feedback

Analyzing customer reviews and feedback provides insights into competitors’ strengths and weaknesses from the customer’s perspective.

How to do it:

Examine patterns in your competitors’ customer feedback, delving into common complaints, and areas of praise. Improve your own products and services based on the insights gathered from this customer insight.

Recommended tools:

  • ReviewTrackers: Aggregates customer reviews from various platforms and provides analysis tools.
    Trustpilot: Offers detailed reviews and ratings for businesses, highlighting customer experiences.

Employee Activities & Corporate Culture

Understanding how competitors engage their employees can reveal insights into their operational efficiency and company culture.

How to do it:
Monitor your competitors’ employee satisfaction, turnover rates, and corporate culture through reviews and social media listening. Based on your learnings, enhance your own corporate culture and employee engagement strategies. 

Recommended tools:

  • Glassdoor: Provides employee reviews and ratings, offering insights into company culture and satisfaction.
  • LinkedIn: Tracks employee movements, job postings, and corporate culture trends.

7. Regulatory Compliance Monitoring

Monitoring regulatory compliance and how competitors adapt to market changes helps you stay ahead in a dynamic business environment.

This allows you to:

  • Stay updated on industry regulations and standards.
  • Understand how competitors adjust to regulatory changes.
  • Stay ahead by anticipating and adapting to regulatory changes.

Here is the main aspect we recommend you monitor, including our recommended tools:

Regulatory Changes & Compliance

Keeping track of regulatory changes and how competitors respond can help you anticipate market shifts and ensure compliance.

How to do it:

Monitor new regulations, compliance efforts, and their impact on your competitors. Make sure to promptly adapt your business practices when new regulations come into force to stay compliant and competitive during change.

Recommended tools:

  • LexisNexis: Tracks legal and regulatory changes across industries.
  • Compliance.ai: Monitors regulatory updates and compliance efforts in various sectors.

Conclusion

Effective competitor monitoring is essential for maintaining a strategic advantage. By tracking and analyzing competitors’ strategies across various aspects, businesses can gain valuable insights to drive growth and success.

Monitor Your Competitors’ Every Move With Rankalyzer

Rankalyzer tracks your competitors in Google, monitors website changes, and keeps an eye on backlinks—all in one place. Use it to gain insights into keyword rankings, analyze meta, content, technical, and backlink changes, and identify new link-building opportunities. Try it for free and see how it can improve your SEO strategy. Visit Rankalyzer to learn more.

Article by
Sean Begg is Founder & CEO at Rankalyzer & Position Digital. He loves writing about SEO, link building and digital PR.

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Sean Begg is Founder & CEO at Rankalyzer & Position Digital. He loves writing about SEO, link building and digital PR.

Rankalyzer allows you to see exactly how your competitors are optimizing their sites and the direct effects on their keyword rankings. Armed with this insight, take decisive action, refine your SEO strategy, and drive better SEO results today.

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