Spying on your rivals online may sound like an immoral activity or something that will take up too much time.
If you want to go down this route, there are lots of useful tools to help you do it.
Online spying shouldn’t be used just to copy others, but it will give you ideas of how your competitors are handling their online marketing.
From social media to SEO and pay per click, find out how to soy on your rivals online by reading the rest of this article.
- Social media
Social media is awash with chatter every day, minute, hour and second of the week.
Monitoring what’s important to you such as what your competitors are saying can be done using online tools.
You never know what you might find, from someone bad-mouthing your business to identifying an opportunity you hadn’t previously thought of.
Tools to try: Social Mention, Hootsuite
- Online reputation
Online reputation management is an important area of doing business online. Who’s talking about you and your products/services? Is what they’re saying true?
Using tools to spy on your competitors may unearth something they’re saying about you, but more likely will let you discover what people are saying about them online.
Tools to try: Google Alerts and Me on the Web
- Pay per click
Pay per click (PPC) advertising is well known for being competitive. Your own campaign may be doing well but how are your competitors faring?
You can use online tools for things like spying on what keywords your rivals are bidding on, when they’ve changed their advert copy and what impact that had on performance.
Spying on PPC campaigns is a good way to establish if there are any keywords or phrases you’re missing out on.
Tools to try: SpyFu and SEMRush
- Link building
Have you ever wondered what one of your rivals is doing to stay ahead of you in the search results?
The answer may well lie in their link building strategy. Thankfully there are spy tools for this too which allow you to see the sites that are linking to your competitors’ websites as well as how many links they have.
Tools to try: Yahoo Site Explorer and Open Site Explorer
Don’t rely on guesswork for your online marketing. Put these tools to use and work smarter to stay ahead online.