Competitive Research

Find out what it will take to differentiate.

A competitive edge isn’t just happenstance. It’s built through research. OEPMA can help develop profiles on your competitors and automate the information where you know their every move.

Competitive Research FAQ

What is competitive research?

Competitive research is the act of collecting and analyzing data about the companies that offer the same types of products or services within your geographical area. It’s a critical practice to understand what your competitors are doing and how better to shape your message to the same audience to gain a competitive edge in the market.

What are the first steps of competitive research?

You want to sit down and build a list of everyone who is a competitor. If you’re new to a market, a simple search on your search engine of choice can help you begin to identify who you’re up against. Once you have the names, it’s a fact-finding mission. Build profiles of each business and how they communicate their offerings and what types of media they use to inform the public.

So I should just look at their website and see "how they do it"?

Yes, that’s part of it, but it goes much deeper, and that’s where you may need a professionals help. While seeing what they’re posting online is excellent and part of the research, you’ll want to find out how everything is structured.

Speaking of websites, you’ll want to see where they rank organically for essential keywords within your industry. You’ll want to see how their website is constructed with regards to page titles and tags. You’ll want to see who is linking to them and how that linking is helping their website locally. Who created their website?

Going even further into digital marketing, you’ll want to see how much they utilize paid search and ads on social media. What do their search ads look like? What does their landing page look like? How much money are they spending on search advertising a month? What are they bidding for specific keywords?

The same kind of depth would need to apply to everything they do that you can find even outside of digital marketing.

Once the files are built on my competitors, what can I do with the information?

The first thing to remember is that just because you have the information, it doesn’t mean that it’s “good” for business. So you don’t want to jump in and start copying everything your competitors do. Again, this is where the help of professionals who can tell you why a competitor is getting higher rankings or is getting more click on their ads. Once the profile is built, you’ll want to see where you can differ from your competition, where you can offer more value to the shared audience. Once identified, you can begin building plans to achieve goals that help you catch up to and exceed your competitors’ offerings.

Is competitive research something I just do one time?

It can be and that one time will help, but good companies are doing this type of research around the clock. Think about large businesses. If someone sneezes in Coca Cola’s office, Pepsi will probably know about it.

There are ways you can automate your competitive research to receive updates about your competitors continually.

A simple (and free) way is to use Google Alerts. Simply add your competitor’s name to your alert, and you’ll be updated when something new hits the internet about them.