As a website owner, you need to stay a step ahead in the market. You need to keep aware on various levels to curate an ultimate experience for your customers.
One of the most important of these is competitor analysis in SEO. If you are thinking about a long-term plan for your business in the market, you've got to keep an eye on your competitors.
Competition is a healthy part of any industry. It fosters growth and new ideas. While you cannot escape the market competition, you must stay prepared at all costs. It forces you to perform better. At the same time, it will help you develop customer satisfaction in a better manner.
Despite the benefits of competitive analysis, not many website owners do it. And some who even try don't know the correct way.
The point is that competitive analysis in SEO can be a game-changer for your business. It can help you steal your competitor's traffic and rank on your business-specific keywords. But, competitive analysis in SEO is more than that. It can help you answer some fundamental questions about your business.
This way, you can capitalize on your weaknesses and improve your website's search and performance.
You might be someone who is just starting your website or have been running it for a while. Whatever stage you are at, you must start looking at your SEO.
The sooner you do it, the faster you capitalize on the market opportunities. But, if you're feeling clueless, we've got you covered. Read on to find out the tips to analyze your competitors for SEO.

Tips to Do Competitor Analysis in SEO

When you're running a website, it is essential to make sure that you take a step back at times.
You might be constantly occupied with creating new content and marketing your website. But, when you take a step back, you get a chance to look at the overall market area. This includes your market positioning, the target customers, and more.
The most important of these is the idea about your competitors. Unless you know what the keywords that your competitors are targeting are, your efforts might be turning into vain.
The reason is that there will always be a smart competitor who studies your keywords in the market. They will capitalize on your weaknesses and outperform you on the search engine rankings. However, this doesn't have to be the case for you.
Take a look at the top tips below:-

1. Hunt Your SEO Competitors

If you're trying your hands on competitive analysis, you need to know who your competitors are. It is important to know about your biggest competitors.
You can quickly find it using Alexa free extension or any SEO tools.
There are chances that you might be guessing some of them as small ones but instead turn out the top rankers for specific keywords. Similarly, there are long-tail keywords where you need to rank as well. If you know which of your competitors are targeting such keywords, you can form a strategy around them.
As a rule of thumb, finding your competitors isn't difficult. These are the ones that rank on the first page of the search engine. And obviously, they're ranking for the keywords you're targeting.
Therefore, there are chances that you might find some names on your list that are not your direct business competitors. However, they might still be targeting those keywords due to little or no competition.

2. Perform a Keyword Difference Analysis

Are you ranking for some keywords but lagging behind your competition?
If this is the case, you need to pay closer attention to your keywords. Chances are, for many SEO keywords, you might be just a position or two behind your competitor.
Your ultimate motto should be to outrank your competitors on the search engine. This way, you increase your business visibility and make it easier for your customers to find you.
One of the essential things in a competitor analysis is to find the gaps in keyword rankings. Once you know that your competitors are ranking better than you, discover why.
You can easily find it using any SEO tool that shows missing opportunities, as shown in the image below.
What are the steps that they are taking which are helping them rank better?
Are they posting supplementary content around the keyword?
What are their backlinks for the higher-ranking pages?
Understand these and work on narrowing these gaps.

3. Conduct a Top Content Analysis

What is your competitor's top content?
Remember that keywords are only one way to build your content. However, you also need to look at your competitor's top content pages ranking well on the search engine. This will help you gain an insight into the content. When you're taking initiatives to rank well, your focus should be content.
Unless you check out your competitor's content, there is no way to ensure the quality. In other words, you need to gain insights on what content ranks better on search engines. Look at your competitor's content and improve upon it.
For example, your competitors might have written content on the keywords gardening equipment. When you're writing on a similar keyword, try the following-

  • Add graphics such as images, GIFs, and videos to help explain better
    This attracts and keeps users for a long time, thereby reducing the bounce rate.
  • Turn your content into a definitive guide
  • Add links and references to shops where people can purchase these products
  • Try to answer people's most asked questions about the topic

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4. Understand the Difficult Keywords

Several factors play a part in ranking a keyword. This means that if you're trying to beat your competitor, you'll have to work in more than a few dimensions.
Many website owners only keep on working in one direction, such as increasing the keyword density.
Even after putting in all the efforts, there might be little or no difference in the overall rankings. Here are a few things that you must pay attention to as you analyze the keyword difficulty-

  • Length of the content
  • Backlinks to the content
    Higher the quality of your backlinks, competitors’ higher will be your position on Google.
  • Rankings across Alexa and other such platforms
  • Indexing across multiple search engines
  • Domain authority of the website
  • Traffic landing on the website and more

Once you have an idea about the factors of your competitors, you can jot down your weaknesses. With the presence of information, it will be easier to turn the analysis to your advantage.
The general rule says you should target the competitors with lower overall scores and rank well for the keywords.

5. Find Out the Popular Pages

Which pages of your competitors rank for most keywords?
Which of these have the most traffic?
Try to dig into these questions as part of your SEO competitor analysis. Chances are you haven't been doing this because you thought keywords were enough. However, it is also essential to identify your competitor's popular pages. There are many shocking things you can discover when you dig into your competitor.
Find the keywords that help them rank on the first page and use it in your content pages.
For example, some of their popular pages might have nothing to do with your business keywords. Despite this, you can witness heavy traffic landing on them.
Are you wondering what lesson you can learn?
If it works for your competitor, chances are it might as well work for your business. But, guess what?
You will never know until you figure out where your most significant competitors get the most traffic on.

6. List Your Competitor's Strengths and Weaknesses

The foundation of any analysis begins with strengths and weaknesses. If you want to look at something without being biased, you need to consider both sides.
When you look at your competitor, the idea is to make a fair comparison with your business. Your competitors might think that you have the best website in the world.
But, there will always be a few areas of weaknesses. And you will only get to see this when you dare to look closely. At once, it can be difficult to find out the weaknesses of someone's website. One of the best ways to do this is to ask for help.
Ask your employees to analyze your competitor's website from different perspectives. Perhaps roleplaying as a customer can help understand things much better. This is the step where you take a moment to reflect upon your business. Instead of being proactive, invest some time just to think.

7. Take a Look at Your On-Page Optimization

Your competitor's on-site SEO gives you a treasure of information to get started. Remember that to rank well on the search engine, you need to optimize your website.
This means you need to add/remove specific keywords. Along with this, you also need to improve your on-site content.
When you look at your competitor in these areas, you get to know information such as-

  • Frequency of publication
  • Quality and kind of content
  • Types of media in the content
  • Length of the content and depth covered
  • Targeted keywords on the content
  • Strategies for catching the customer's eyes etc.

For example, you could dig into your competitor's headlines and metadata, among others. This will give you valuable insight into how to create your own.
Moreover, if you trace the traffic on these pages, you can also know what is working well for your competitors. Upon understanding these, it will be easy to set a benchmark for your website.

8. Start Looking at Your Competitor's Backlinks

Backlinks play a huge role in ranking a website on the search engine. In other words, for any website, you need to know where their backlinks are coming from. This helps you analyze their business strategy. And at the same time, build quality links for your website.
One of the easiest ways to analyze your competitor's backlinks is to download their backlink profile.
There are several tools in the market that you can leverage for this purpose.
Find competitor’s broken, new, and high authority links to reach out to those websites to get backlinks for your site.
They will help you rank your competitors' backlinks in the order of least to the most authoritative.
Your competitors may have a plethora of backlinks for their websites. However, it doesn't mean that you need to be threatened because of it.
Remember that you aim to identify high-quality links. This is because search engines prefer high-quality links rather than a dozen low-quality ones.
If you add too many irrelevant links to your website, you might do more harm than good. There's also a mistake that website owners often commit.
They only look for the following backlinks. No doubt, followed backlinks make more sense from the SEO standpoint. But, nofollow links also contribute by being an important source of traffic for your website.

9. Understand Different Types of Content

If you want your website to stand out from the crowd, you need to dive deep into the content.
You need to find various types of content creation (infographic, videographic, animated, text, etc.) to beat the competition.
Content is the area that helps you stand out on the search engine. It is also the reason why traffic is flooding your competitor's website. And this is why you need to understand different kinds of content.
The idea is to get an insight into what works in the line of your business.
For example, you might be writing some amazing content on your website. You are also adding the relevant keywords and making sure your backlink profile is good. However, even after all these efforts, you cannot make a mark on the search engine.
Are you wondering what went wrong?
Take a look at your competitor's content! Chances are they are including content in their website that appeals to the customer. Certain types of content like infographics, videos, podcasts, etc., garner engagement. If you don't have these on your website, you're already missing out on a lot of traffic.

10. Make the Most of Social Media

The journey of analysis doesn't just end on your competitor's website. Today, social media has become one of the essential sources of engagement.
For this reason, you need to keep your eyes wide open in this area. Social media is, in fact, a part of the content. Therefore, as you look at their website pages, don't forget to check the social media profiles.
You need to know what kind of content they are putting on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. Similarly, dig into their engagement rates, follower count, and more.
A lot of website owners target social media to help bring traffic to their website. This might be through social sharing of their posts, ads, etc.
You can also leverage several tools that will help you listen to your competitor's social media profiles.
These tools help you track competitor social profiles and provide the top trends in the market.
They will also help you track the social sentiment, which directly affects rankings.

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Top 10 Competitor Analysis Tools for SEO

Now that you know the inside tips for competitor analysis, let's introduce you to some tools. When you're trying your hands at competitor analysis, several tools can come in handy. Don't worry, we've got the best ones for you here.


SEMrush is your all-in-one SEO competitor analysis tool. It helps you research keywords and backlinks. While the tool is paid, you can avail of its free trial plan for a few days.
Once the trial period is over, SEMrush offers affordable plans depending on the services you need to use.
You can audit your competitor's website and analyze the backlinks and their quality. Moreover, there are also many customizable options that you can leverage for a filtered search.


Ahrefs is an excellent alternative to SEMrush. If you're not inclined to use the latter, Ahrefs is the one for you. It provides several functionalities that make your SEO competitor analysis a hassle-free affair. However, there are also several additional features that you can enjoy with this tool.
For example, you get to analyze your website's organic visibility, track keywords across websites, etc. Most importantly, you can also conduct in-depth keyword research and unearth broken backlinks.


Your competitor analysis is incomplete if you just look at their website. As we discussed above, you also need to look at social media. Website owners today are very active on social media. They use it as a means to garner traffic and establish their brand.
Buzzsumo is one tool that helps you outperform your website competitors with ease. It helps you find growing trends and influencers along with content research and more. So, if you want to know which content is rocking your competitor's social media, try Buzzsumo.


If you want to stay a step ahead in the market, you need to analyze your competitor's website traffic. Alexa is the best tool that helps you accomplish this task with ease. But remember that knowing the overall traffic is not enough.
You also need to understand the traffic sources, monthly searches, audience insights, among others. All of these help you gain more insights. You can leverage these for advanced decision-making.


Just like a few others on this list, Ubersuggest is a one-stop SEO competitor analysis tool. With it by your side, you no longer have to play the guessing game while analyzing your competitor's strategy.
Ubersuggest gives you more than just a peek into your competitor's traffic, estimated visits, backlinks, social shares, etc.


Website traffic is one of the most crucial factors for the success of your business. If you aren't getting enough traffic, who will you sell to?
The QuickSprout competitor analysis tool helps you handle this task without any troubles. It gives you a chance to learn about websites that are similar to yours. Additionally, it also gives you strategies to throw them in the race.


Are you interested in learning how your competitor attracts traffic to their website? Wait no more! SimilarWeb is the tool you need.
The wonderful SEO tool helps you understand the traffic distribution across all channels on the search engine. So, you might want to know about the keywords that bring the most visitors from platforms like social media. With SimilarWeb, this information is a click away!


If you're looking for an expert tool for PPC competitor research, SpyFu is the one for you. The tool gives you the visibility of your competitor's decision-making while running their ads. This means you get to know about their ad history, keywords, negative keywords, split tests, and more.

Google Advanced Search Operators

There are no two ways about Google being the best search engine. So, when it gives you a tool to help you compete with your rivals, you have to try it. Google Search Operators is an excellent tool that enables you to filter your search results. In other words, it precisely shows you the most relevant and accurate results related to your query.

Rank Signals

Even though the landscape of SEO has significantly changed in the past few years, it remains a constant. In other words, website owners need to look at it from the competitor's perspective. You need to gain as much information about your competitor's SEO as possible.
This ultimately lays the foundation of your SEO content strategy. Rank Signals is an effective tool that helps check the backlinks and unravel the traffic of your competitor.

SEO Competitor Analysis FAQs

Still have doubts about getting started with SEO competitor analysis? Take a look at some of the frequently asked questions below-

1. What Is the Best Way of Competitor Analysis in SEO?

Competitor analysis in SEO is one of the best ways to stay a step ahead with your business website. You must start with the keyword analysis, which is the backbone of the process.
The next step is to identify your competitors' top keywords, pages, content, and strategies.
You can do it using tools like Ahrefs, SEMRush, etc.
Once this is done, reflect on the way you're doing things. At the same time, don't forget to keep an eye on your competitor's social media.

2. How to Use SEO Tools for Competitor Analysis?

When you know that your goal is to gain as many insights about your competitor's SEO, you must do the hard work. However, doing everything manually can be a tiresome task. With the SEO tools at your assistance, you can evaluate a competitor's search engine strategy.
Use these tools to unravel your competitor's best-kept secrets about their SEO and traffic.

3. How to Use SEO Tools for Competitor Analysis?

When you create a website, you invest both money and hope. However, despite doing everything right, you might not get the traffic you dreamed about.
Only when you tap into your competitors' strategies will you know what's working in the industry.
All SEO tools come with the competitor analysis option that helps perform competitor keyword, content, and backlinks analysis.
Once you know about their plans and results, you can make better decisions.

4. What Are Some of the Best Ways to Learn How to Do an SEO Analysis of My Competitor?

SEO competitor analysis is one of the pillars of a successful online business. You must get started with it as early as possible.
If you're looking for the best ways, take a look at some of the steps above. Today, there are also several free courses available online that can give you a head start. However, you need to customize the tips as per your business niche.


Ready to get started with the SEO analysis of your competitor? Just make sure that you cover all aspects diligently. The key to success lies in creating a strategy about what you want to accomplish. If you're looking to bring more traffic to your website, understand where your competitor's traffic is coming from.
Most website owners make the mistake of neglecting social media from the plan. On the other hand, if you can leverage this one channel by learning from your competitor, you might turn the tables faster than you thought.
Make use of these useful tips to do competitor analysis for your website. You can also speak with our experts to get a free 1-on-1 consultation.

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