If you’re looking to optimize your SEO game, it pays to conduct a competitive analysis to see how you can make some improvements to your site so that it’s more competitive on the search engines.
Here are a few steps to help you get started.
Step 1 – Define Your Site’s Keywords
The keywords that you choose to target play an important role in how your website will rank. While you could use keywords that include the name of your brand or company, it’s essential to ensure that the words you use match exactly those that your own customers would use in a Google search. Effective keyword research is key to your overall SEO strategy to optimize your website.
Step 2 – Analyze Your Keywords
After you’ve defined your keywords, you will want to analyze them to see how they stack up against the competition. Doing a keyword analysis will help you see who your competitors are and see who is doing better than you are in page rankings.
Make your keywords long-tail if possible and add local keywords, such as a city name to them if necessary. You can use Google Trends to see which keywords are getting more traffic for your company.
Don’t try to climb the rankings by leaps and bounds. Instead, focus on climbing step by step, and you’ll eventually make strides with a continued effort. It’s easier to move up two or three notches rather than trying to overtake the top spot in one shot.
Step 3 – Identify Technical Differences
In order to determine which aspects your competition is beating you on, you will need to identify a few things in the technical department.
For starters, check your site speed by using tools such as Google’s PageSpeed tool or Pingdom. Speed insights will inform you of how much of a difference there may be between your site and your big competitors. Obviously, you want a faster site, which will only please visitors.
Next, you’ll want to see how secure your site is vs. your competitors’. Google ranks secure sites favourably, and customers will appreciate the level of security your site offers. You can check your technical information by using a tool called Builtwith.com.
Further, you’ll want to make sure your site is mobile-friendly. Check your competitors’ websites and see where they are outperforming yours.
Step 4 – Compare User Experience
User experience is critical, and all websites should be optimized for users. A better user experience makes for more page views, more time spent on site, and a lower bounce rate. When it comes to a competitive analysis, you should be focusing on two things:
Call to action – Every page needs a call to action, no matter what that may happen to be. Go over some of your competitors’ pages to see how they’ve set up their call to action, and be sure to eliminate any video backgrounds or sliders, which have the opposite effect of getting people to take action.
Contact page – The end goal of every visit should be to have visitors end up at your contact page so they can get in touch with you. See how your competition created their page, and identify how they structured their data, if they added a contact form, or if they made it easier for people to find these details. Make any adjustments to your site accordingly.
How else can you boost your site’s competitiveness against other sites? Sound off in the comments below!