Competitive analysis is a tactic that every company should use regularly.
But without the right tool that suits your needs, it’s easy for manual competitive analysis to take up a big chunk of time.
A competitive analysis is essentially a strategy where you identify your competitors and research their products/services, sales and marketing strategies. Of course, your analysis can be as simple or as complex as you need to satisfy your goals behind it.
For example, perhaps you’re only interested in how your competitors are approaching the overall design and usability of their websites. Or, you want to evaluate a more broad look at their overall digital marketing strategies.
See more about what a competitive analysis is and how you can start yours.
The following are 16 tools that you should consider as you perform your competitive analysis, divided up by the focus of each tool. The best tool for your business likely will come down to your goals and competitive analysis needs.
Overall competitive analysis tools
Pi Datametrics allows you to measure the impact of your brand campaigns against your competitors. This tool analyzes emerging trends and audience intent to help you match your messaging and timing to consumers’ needs.
Features include SEO tracking, daily rank tracking, market analysis capabilities, identifying market leaders and overall industry analysis.
It’s an all-around competitive analysis tool that can give your company the edge through insightful data that goes beyond digital marketing.
You can use Kompyte to compare traffic, referrals, visitor behavior, keywords, search rankings, paid ads and social media metrics.
In addition, you can stay updated with your competitors’ emails.
Kompyte also will auto-suggest potential competitors based on the keywords you’re tracking.
Social media focus
Phlanx is an Instagram engagement calculator that helps you understand how active an account’s followers are. This is a great tool if your competitive analysis is focused on Instagram. In addition, it can help you figure out whether or not an influencer has a legitimate following on the visual social media platform.
Phlanx’s engagement ratio is based on the number of followers an account has versus the rate that followers engage with content, such as with likes, comments and so on.
While this calculator doesn’t give an ultimate say on an Instagram account’s value or success, it does give some perspective that goes beyond the simple follower count.
Sprout Social helps you understand competitor performance on social media from multiple angles and data points across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
You can use this tool to get a sneak peek at what your competitors are posting or benchmark your growth against the average of the profiles being compared.
Sprout Social also offers an advanced social media listening feature, with interactive charts and graphs that you can customize for your goals. Learn more about social media listening.
Looking at a wide range of social media platforms (including Instagram, Twitter and YouTube, among others), Social Blade interprets the followings and engagement actions on competitor accounts.
You can get a day-by-day follower update, as well as a live follower count through this tool. Plus, you can stack competitors’ social profiles against each other for a larger overall analysis.
One of the most popular SEO tools online right now, SEMRush also offers several competitive analysis features. And it’s ideal for understanding your competition through an SEO-specific lens.
The tool, for example, allows you to pull your competitor’s backlinks and monitor shifts in their search engine ranking. You also can get a by-the-numbers view of who’s competing for particular keywords.
MozBar is a Chrome browser extension that offers a surface-level view of a website’s authority as perceived by Google. This tool assigns websites a domain authority score based on its likelihood to rank in search engines for a variety of factors.
Because it’s a browser extension, MozBar is very accessible, making it easy to see a competitor’s potential search performance at a glance. You’ll also see how competing sites compare in a Google search query.
Ahrefs is another popular competitive analysis tool as it relates to SEO. It enables you to check any URL’s top organic keywords, as well as provides you with a rough estimate of how much traffic a competitor gets from those keywords.
You also can see a competitor’s highest-performing content based on backlinks. This all helps prevent you from engaging in a guessing game when it comes to your competitors’ referral traffic.
Similarweb is actually a competitive analysis tool that addresses both content and SEO. It helps you dive deeper into your competitors’ content, as well as where their web traffic is coming from.
This tool can help you see what topics visitors search for and what other relevant sites they visit.
SimilarWeb is free, but you can upgrade to gain access to more competitive analysis tools.
Looking for top-performing content on relevant topics for your brand and your competitors? Consider Buzzsumo. This tool looks at both engagement on social media platforms and total shares across the web for each piece of content, giving you an idea of who’s successful in regards to strong industry content.
Of course, on the flip side, the pieces of content identified by Buzzsumo can help you with new ideas for content of your own.
A content aggregator, Feedly stores and organizes content as it’s published. So, you can see the topics covered by your competitors in one place.
This tool also features AI (artificial intelligence) that can be taught to prioritize the topics and trends that matter to you.
iSpionage helps you dig deeper into your competitors’ paid ads by analyzing multiple aspects of PPC (pay-per-click) campaigns. This includes how many keywords a competitor is targeting on Google AdWords and what their target keywords are.
You’ll also see who else is competing for PPC ads on a particular topic and how much they’re projected monthly budget is.
Need to analyze competitors’ emails? Mailcharts aggregates emails from competing campaigns. This tool grabs subject lines, pulls send frequency and compares everything to your brand’s campaigns to see how your emails compare.
In addition to comparing your emails to competitors’, Mailcharts compares your campaigns to its own library of marketing emails to ensure you’re in line with such best practices as timing, frequency, subject line length and so on.
You’ll also have access to email examples to help inspire your current and future campaigns.
Owler curates various business data points for your competitors. You can access exclusive information, including annual revenue, employee count, funding and top competitors.
This tool also allows you to filter a real-time feed of the latest news to uncover events that could move your business forward, including funding, layoffs and more.
Not to be confused with Owler, Owletter aggregates emails from competitors and organizes them into a simple dashboard.
This tool will spot changes in your competitors’ email frequency, as well as trends that can help you better determine when you should send your own emails.
SpyFu helps you research and download your competitors’ most profitable keywords in PPC ad campaigns. It reveals not only the paid keywords, but also the organic search keywords that can help you improve your own SEO performance.
In other words, this tool doesn’t just cover PPC competitive analysis, but SEO as well.
Once you find the perfect competitive analysis tool for your goals, consider leveling up your digital marketing with DailyStory. Features include automating various marketing tasks, dynamic audience segmentations and more. Schedule your free demo with us today.