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How to Do a Competitive Analysis in Digital Marketing?

How to Do a Competitive Analysis in Digital Marketing?

Conducting a competitive analysis in digital marketing is an essential step in staying ahead of your rivals and fostering business growth. It involves a comprehensive examination of your competitors’ digital strategies, strengths, and weaknesses to capitalize on your advantages and address your shortcomings effectively. The process can be carried out in-house without the need for expensive third-party assistance. In this article, we will delve into the process of competitor analysis in the digital realm, covering key aspects such as its definition, importance, components, types, and tools available for analysis. Additionally, we provide a competitive analysis tracker for download to facilitate data monitoring and actionable insights.

Definition of Digital Competitive Analysis: Competitive analysis in digital marketing is a systematic exploration of competitors to identify their strong points and weaknesses. It delves into the marketing strategies, pricing models, product development, and distribution tactics employed by companies, providing valuable insights. Such insights help you remain abreast of industry trends and discover digital strategies that enhance brand visibility, customer engagement, and, most importantly, revenue.

Why Perform a Competitive Analysis in Digital Marketing?

The scope of a competitive analysis can vary depending on your specific objectives. It can range from broad industry analysis to focused examinations of particular aspects. For instance, if you want to optimize your website’s performance, you would scrutinize competitors’ websites to study their content, user experience (UX), and lead generation strategies. The knowledge gained from this analysis can then inform the application of new conversion rate optimization (CRO) techniques. The benefits of conducting such an analysis include:

  • Identifying market barriers and opportunities.
  • Defining your unique value proposition compared to competitors.
  • Spotlighting areas where competitors fall short or exhibit weaknesses.
  • Targeting the most effective digital strategies in your niche.
  • Identifying new customer segments and geographic territories.
  • Revealing market trends.
  • Recognizing potential for new product or service offerings.
  • Establishing a benchmark for measuring your performance.

Components of a Competitive Analysis: A digital competitive analysis involves examining various facets of your competitors’ online presence and evaluating their contributions to growth. It ultimately centers on benchmarking against competitors. Key components include:

  1. Categorizing Competitors: Distinguish competitors based on their level of competitiveness, categorizing them as primary (direct competitors), secondary (similar product or service targeting a different audience), or tertiary (related but non-competing brands).
  2. Profiling Competitors’ Target Customers: Understand your competitors’ target audience by analyzing their mission statements, social media messaging, content, webinars, customer reviews, and user-generated content.
  3. Applying the 4 Ps of Marketing:Analyze competitors’ product offerings, pricing models, promotional strategies, and distribution channels to gain insights into their activities.
  4. Identifying Best Practices: Recognize successful strategies used by top competitors, such as marketing on specific platforms or excelling in search engine optimization (SEO).
  5. Using Analysis Frameworks: Apply frameworks like SWOT analysis, Porter’s Five Forces, or growth share matrices to assess opportunities, threats, strengths, weaknesses, and market dynamics.
  6. Organizing Data: Systematically arrange data collected on competitors for easy reference and comparison, considering factors like price range, social media activities, lead generation tactics, content marketing initiatives, and more.

Types of Competitive Analysis: Several types of competitive analysis focus on specific digital marketing channels or aspects. These include:

  • PPC Competitor Analysis: Examines competitors’ pay-per-click (PPC) advertising strategies, including keyword bidding and ad messaging.
  • SEO Competitor Analysis: Investigates competitors’ SEO keyword rankings, backlinks, content strategies, and top-performing pages.
  • Social Media Competitor Analysis:Analyzes competitors’ presence on social media platforms, their audience demographics, post frequency, content themes, and engagement rates.
  • Email Marketing Analysis: Scrutinizes competitors’ email marketing campaigns, including their email content, frequency, and engagement metrics.
  • Website UI/UX Analysis: Evaluates competitors’ website user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) to identify areas for improvement.

Competitor Analysis Tools: Several tools are available to simplify and enhance the competitive analysis process. These tools facilitate data collection, accuracy, and efficiency. Examples of such tools include:

  • Ahrefs: Offers insights into top-performing keywords, estimated keyword traffic, and backlink analysis.
  • SE Ranking: Provides information on paid and organic search performance, competitor keywords, and backlinks.
  • SEMRush: Conducts site audits, reveals competitor keywords, and offers a backlink analysis.
  • Spyfu: Researches competitors’ profitable PPC keywords.
  • Similarweb: Provides data on web traffic, keyword trends, and engagement metrics.
  • Sprout Social: Measures follower growth, engagement, hashtag trends, conversions, and paid content performance.


Conducting a comprehensive competitive analysis in digital marketing is vital for staying competitive and driving growth. Understanding your competitors’ strategies and customer targeting approaches enables you to refine your digital marketing activities effectively. Leveraging the right tools and frameworks helps streamline the analysis process, turning knowledge into actionable insights.

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