The Beginner’s Guide To SEO Competitive Analysis

Written By Alla Levin
July 11, 2023

What is SEO competitive analysis, and why should you use it? 

Both of these questions will be answered in today’s guide as we look at a critical aspect of every winning SEO strategy. It’s never enough to focus on yourself in the world of search engine rankings; you must be aware of what others are doing. With that in mind, let’s jump into this quick and simple guide! 

What is SEO competitive analysis?

Competitive analysis in SEO is the process of looking at your biggest rivals. The aim is to find your rivals, look at their web listings and figure out what they’re doing right. This will involve lots of different intricate tools and software that’ll eventually provide numerous results. 

What are the benefits of SEO competitive analysis?

As just mentioned, you figure out what your rivals are doing better than you. It’s always important to know how people are besting you. From here, you can take what they’re doing and implement a similar strategy on your site. 

However, competitive analysis lets you go one step further. You see what they’re doing wrong and where they’re being held back. Consequently, you can build on their positives by addressing the negatives. It’ll leave you with an SEO strategy that uses all the good parts of your rivals’ approach but with none of the bad elements.

How do you conduct SEO competitive analysis?How do you conduct SEO competitive analysis

Initially, you think this is a tough thing to do. While it can take some time to gather the research and make sense of your findings, running SEO competitive analysis is easier now than ever. 

Start by finding your competitors – this can be done using Semrush’s Organic Research tool. Type in your URL, and you’ll be presented with your main organic competitors. It’ll show you all the sites competing for the exact keywords. 

From here, you need to indulge in some web scraping services. Web scraping is when you find websites and pull as much data as possible. For SEO analysis, you can help identify keywords used on a site, find metatags and get a deeper view of a rival site’s SEO strategy. You’ll even learn things like the internal linking strategy or the backlinks a place acquires. 

Now comes the most challenging part; gather all of this data and try to make sense of it. Scrape the same data from your website and compare it to your competition. This is where it becomes slightly easier to spot the differences.

You’ll soon see that perhaps your rivals have a better content strategy or are targeting better keywords. Maybe they’re using better off-page SEO than you, giving them the edge. Find patterns, see where you can improve, and build a strategy. 

Overall, competitive analysis is critical when gaining an advantage in SEO. With so many websites competing for ranking spots, you must do everything you can to get the edge. You’ll only be able to achieve this if you know what your rivals are doing and how you can do the same, but better! 

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