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Analysing the competition

Posted on 27 October '15 by , under General News.

Many business owners spend too much time and energy worrying about what the competition is doing, instead of listening and responding to customers needs.

But focusing on customers does not mean that you can just ignore the competition. From time-to-time, a review of who is doing what in your market segment can be a worthwhile exercise.

Here are some easy ways to kick off your competitor analysis, all from the comfort of your computer. All you need to do is jump on the Internet.

Competitors’ websites
Don’t stop at the home page. Read the “About Us” section and review descriptions of their products or services. Here are some other things to pay attention to when reviewing your competitors’ websites:

  • descriptions of products/services

  • strategic alliances

  • pricing

  • customer lists or testimonials

  • recent contracts won

  • staff

  • how often the site is updated

Local competition
On the Google home page, search the names of your competitors and the generic description of your product/service category and location (if appropriate). Try alternative phrases as well. In other words, if you want to find out who’s competing with you in the catering industry in Sampletownnes, also try phrases like “catering” and Sampletown. Don’t limit the search to Google, try the other search engines like Yahoo as well.

Industry associations
If you target specific industries, review the websites of those industry associations. Information such as memberships and exhibitors lists at recent trade shows or conventions may reveal whether your competitors are actively marketing to the same industry.

Despite what information you gather, the fact you have competition should help you to constantly revise your strategy and improve your products and services.