The best way to keep an eye on the competition and how you’re doing compared to them is by conducting a competitive analysis regularly. And no, that doesn’t mean checking out their website and product offerings once a month and comparing them to yours. There is so much more that goes into a good competitive analysis and we’re here to tell you!
Competitor research and analysis is one of the many services that we offer at Elemental Plans so if you’re looking to get an edge on your competition, visit our website or reach out to us! We can provide you with all the tools you need to beat out the competition and outperform.
What is a competitive analysis?
A competitive analysis is a research project companies take on to dive into their competition and gather research on things like their marketing strategies, products they offer, and what their sales numbers may look like.
In this blog post linked here, https://www.elementalplans.com/post/how-to-conduct-an-effective-swot-analysis, we discussed conducting a SWOT analysis. Essentially, a competitive analysis is doing a toned-down SWOT analysis of your competition. You want to find out their strengths and weaknesses and ways that you can improve your business to outperform them or offer something they may not.
Why is a competitive analysis important?
Comparing ourselves to others seems to be a common theme. Why not do it with products offered at your business? What do you offer that the competition doesn’t? What makes your product unique? What are they doing right that maybe you aren’t doing?
Using a competitive analysis is a great sounding board on not only your products but how you market those products. You can determine opportunities to take that your competition has overlooked. Or possibly seeing things your competition has done that you think you could execute better.
Using competitive analysis, you can also measure your growth in the market and how well you are doing compared to others. Are you falling short or possibly exceeding? You can also learn the pain points of customers in the market and try to tackle those issues to make your product a superior one.
How to conduct an effective competitive analysis
We can break down the steps of conducting a competitive analysis, but if you are wanting a professional competitive analysis, fill out the form with this link and someone will be in touch with you shortly. Elemental Plans offers professional competitor research and analysis at an affordable price.
Now, what are the steps to performing a competitive analysis?
1. Determine competition
The very first thing you will need to decide is who would you like to conduct the research on. Choose a company that is in the same market as you with products similar to the ones you offer. You can also do a quick web search on Google to see who the top competition is when using keywords your target audience would use to search for your products. We suggest starting with a few brands, 5-10 at most.
2. Conduct a background search
You will want to research the background of the companies that you chose. Things like:
Number of employees
Number of years in business
Getting a general backstory to each company will help with directly relating them to your own business.
3. Focus on value propositions
It’s very important to research each company’s value propositions to determine how your products compare. A value proposition is a summary, usually one or two sentences that summarize the benefits a product or service brings customers and why they should choose theirs over others. In this step, you will focus in on the actual copy on their websites. Pay attention to what they have written on different landing pages or taglines they may have throughout their website. It will help you deduce what they think they bring to the table and how they view their products.
4. Marketing research
This is where we get into the meat and potatoes of what we do at Elemental Plans. Digital marketing. This step focuses on the competition’s marketing efforts and how effective they were. What sort of strategies did they use in the past? Focus in on the content, what did they provide to customers and how did the customers react? Did they like certain content more than others? Did any of the companies use different marketing tactics like brand ambassadors or affiliate marketing? Do they have really successful social media platforms? Why is that?
5. Research the customer base
This last step is also a very important step. Honing in on each competitor’s customers and their engagement as well as their overall experiences with the brands. Pay attention to how they engage with the company’s content on social media. How are the reviews? What did customers like and hate about each business? This is where you can also start a SWOT analysis of opportunities you can take and threats against your business. At the end of an effective competitive analysis, you should have an impressive SWOT analysis to utilize in the future. You can take your findings and use them to better inform your decisions in the future when it comes to marketing products and product improvements.
Hopefully, we were able to answer all your questions with this blog, but if not, you can always reach out to us. We are here to help!
Undoubtedly, understanding your competition is key to staying relative in your market or industry. Having something to compare to is always helpful. Don’t ever let a competitive analysis discourage you or slow your efforts. This is just a way to see how your competition is performing and opportunities for your business to take that other may not have. Have fun with it!
Coursera, “What Is Competitor Analysis? Definition + Step-by-Step Guide”, Coursera, July 22, 2022, https://www.coursera.org/articles/competitor-analysis, Accessed November 30, 2022
HubSpot Blog, “What’s a Competitive Analysis & How Do You Conduct One?”, Christine White, November 10, 2022, https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/competitive-analysis-kit, Accessed November 29, 2022