Every industry is different, and it’s essential to have a grasp of what others are doing. In my case, there are plenty of big players in the digital marketing industry.
Here, I looked at keywords like digital marketing agency and SEO agency to see who’s ranking. I took the first result that came up and put them in SEO tool ahrefs:
I can quickly look at their top backlinks, organic keywords, top pages and best content. I repeat this process with the top 10 search results. By doing this, you’ll see trends appear of what the top industry websites are doing.
It’s great to look at the industry to see on a high level to analyse what strategies are in place. However, rarely will I be competing with these websites in search results.
To get better insights, you want to look at your actual competitors. To do this put your domain into ahrefs, then go to the competing domains tab.
Now repeat the process mentioned above for the top 5-10 competitors.
Niche Competitor Research
The best insights come from analysing the websites ranking on page one for your ten most important keywords. These are your niche competitors, and they are already ranking for your ‘money’ keywords.
In my case, the keywords that would generate revenue are SEO consulting, SEO packages, AdWords consulting and google analytics consulting. Looking at who ranks number one for these keywords and analysing what they are doing will help me to rank higher on Google.
Type your keyword into Google, and go to your the #1 website. Read the content on the page, put their website into ahrefs (or another SEO tool) and analyse their backlinks, top keywords and domain ratings.
Summarising your competitor research
You want to summarise your research into a document so that you can refer to it. Below you can see an example of research I did for my website.
In the document, I’ve listed the key competitors. Then provided links to spreadsheets with in-depth analysis of their backlinks, keywords and top pages.