Competitor analysis tools allow you to see exactly what your competitors are doing to get the top positions in the search results.
Competitor analysis is one way of developing an effective overall SEO strategy.
Why SEO Should Start With Competitor Analysis
There are two reasons why any SEO strategy should start with competitor analysis:
- SEO is inherently competitive, so you need to know what you’re up against
- Whatever your niche or industry, the hard work – such as finding what keywords bring the most targeted traffic – has already been done.
What Can You Discover with Competitor Analysis?
Here are some of the things that SEO competitor analysis will tell you:
Competitor Analysis and Keywords
The main focus of SEO competitor analysis is keywords.
You’ll see exactly what keywords your competitors are targeting, which keywords bring your competitors their most traffic, and which keywords bring them the highest ROI.
Competitor Analysis and Link Opportunities
But SEO competitor analysis will also reveal link opportunities that you can take advantage of, the internal linking tactics that your competitors are using, and the backlink strategies that are working best for your competitors.
SEO competitor analysis tools don’t all do the same thing. Here are some of the specific metrics different competitor analysis tools provide:
Here are some of the main SEO competitor analysis tools:
25 Best Competitor Analysis Tools for SEO
It’s also a powerful SEO competitor analysis tool. Here are some of the things you can do with SEMrush:
- Find out where your rivals concentrate most of their marketing efforts
- Discover their websites’ traffic, audiences and lead generation sources
- Analyse their regional presence
- Get a bird’s-eye view of your competitors' SEM strategies
- Dig into your competitors advertising strategies and tactics
- Evaluate their online performance
- Learn about your competitors’ most successful SEO practices
- See the domains you are competing with for the top positions in Google
- Identify competitors’ target keywords you’ve overlooked
- Conduct in-depth analysis of your competitors' backlinks
- Uncover link-building opportunities by watching your rivals’ lost links
- Find and evaluate the websites linking to your competitors but not to you
- Compare your backlink profile against your rivals’
- Get a list of domains to target in your link-building campaigns
Ahrefs is an SEO and content analysis tool which you can use to analyse competitor keywords, both organic and PPC, backlinks, and traffic metrics.
Discover which of your competitor’s pages are bringing in the most backlinks, social shares, and traffic. Ahrefs has a database of 192 billion pages, making it largest index of backlinks on the web.
Majestic is a link intelligence tool that has the “the planet's largest Link Index database”.
Majestic’s Compare Tool allows you to analyse your site against your competition by comparing your site with up to 10 different websites.
Discover which of your competitors has the highest Trust Flow, which has the most number of backlinks, which has the most governmental domains linking to them etc. You can also see which websites have been gaining the most number of links over a period of time.
Alexa is a global ranking system based on traffic data but can also be used a competitor analysis tool. The Alexa rank allows you to see how your site performs relative to other sites.
But you can also use Alexa for competitor analysis:
- Find sites that share a similar audience and perform audience overlap analysis to find new demographics.
- Benchmark your performance against competitors
- Get website traffic statistics for your competitors, such as popularity, engagement, unique visitors, and other metrics
- Discover what marketing channels are working for competitors
- Uncover new SEO tactics by understanding what strategies are working for other sites.
SpyFu is a suite of competitor analysis tools for organic keywords, AdWords and PPC.
Spy Fu allows you to search for any competitor and download their keywords. Helps to uncover your competitors' PPC & SEO strategies.
View your competitor's complete AdWords campaign history. Helps you keep track of every website in your SEO niche. Notice changes in rankings and content over time.
6. Mangools SERP Checker
Mangools is primarily known for its keyword research tool. But it’s actually a suite of tools, one of which is the Mangools SERP Checker.
The SERPChecker is a Google SERP competitor analysis tool that gives you over 45 different SEO metrics.
As with all Mangools tools the SERP Checker present its data in a highly user-friendly interface. You can see with one glance why your competitors are ranking on the highest positions.
The competitor analysis tool is included in the Mangools free version, though you’ll only be able to do three look-ups per 24 hours.
Ispionage is a competitive intelligence tool that does exactly what it says in the tag line: ‘Steal Your Competitors' Traffic & Uncover Their Conversion Strategy’. Ispionage leans towards PPC but also includes SEO metrics.
Here are some of the competitor insights it will give you:
- Find profitable keywords faster
- Get competitor SEO keyword lists
- Find out how much your competitors are spending per month on AdWords
- Identify your competitors’’ most profitable keywords
- Find out which ads get the most traffic
- Uncover your top competitors in Google, Yahoo, and Bing
DataForSEO is another of the top competitor analysis tools. It helps you find out more about the online presence of rival websites. Get the following metrics for competitor’s websites:
- Estimated traffic analysis by countries
- Traffic and its sources
- Bounce rate
- Average time on site
- Top keywords
DataForSEO is designed primarily for SEO companies.
9. Rank Signals
10. SE Ranking
SE Ranking is cloud based SEO software that focuses on keyword position tracking.
It allows you to identify your competitors’ keywords and ads for paid and organic search. Provides real-time positions of your keywords and your competitors' keywords in major search engines.
11. Monitor Backlinks
Monitor Backlinks is a competitive analysis backlink tool that lets you monitor your own backlinks as well as identify where your competitors are getting their best backlinks from. Now includes a keyword rank tracker tool that stores and tracks all your keywords in one place.
This is one of my favourite competitor analysis tools.
12. Moz Link Explorer
Moz Link Explorer is a tool from Moz that allows you to monitor backlinks, page and domain authority, anchor text, and linking domains for both your website and your competitors.
13. Link Research Tools
Link Research Tools provides tools for Link Audit and Google Recovery, Link Building, Backlink Analysis, and Competitor Analysis.
LRT’s competitor analysis metrics allow you to learn from and outperform your competition by leveraging insights around their link behaviour, their mistakes and their successes.
Here are some of the tactics available to you with Link Research Tools:
- Understand link ratios and risk levels for every niche.
- Find strong links which are used by competitors
- Evaluate competitors’ websites and links and learn how to outperform them
- Find out who is ranking well for the keywords in any specific sector and determine new SEO opportunities
- View comprehensive backlink profiles for competitive sites
- Find the strongest pages of any website and understand why they are performing so well
BrightEdge is aimed is an enterprise level SEO tool that handles comprehensive keyword management. The tool allows you to benchmark your competition and helps you to understand how to perform better against your competition at the keyword level.
You can measure and track share of voice and identify key topics that you are not ranking on but should create content for.
Conductor is an enterprise content marketing platform but includes SEO competitive analysis.
Conductor’s Domain Explorer gives you a high level look at how all the content on your domain is performing compared to your competitors. Conductor uses the following approach to competitor analysis:
- Identify known and unknown competitors
- Compare your rankings and content with competitors
- Discover content opportunities where you can outrank them
- Create content, or optimize existing content, based on your discoveries.
Serpstat describes itself as an all-in-one SEO platform: a growth hacking tool for SEO, PPC, and content marketing. It allows you to track your positions in the SERPS, conduct backlink analysis, do keyword research, and perform a site audit. One of the most affordable competitor analysis tools.
Searchmetrics gives you detailed reports on how your competitors rank for certain keywords and reveal their search strategy.
Searchmetrics enables you to make quick improvements and get a competitive advantage. Compare your website with your competitors, find out their strengths and weaknesses to optimize your online strategy.
SimilarWeb allows you to identify where your competitor’s traffic comes from and helps you understand your market, your competitors, and your customers.
SimilarWeb reveals your competition's analytics & online strategy. Similar Web processes over 5 billion events a day and analyses them using machine learning algorithms.
Siteliner is not primarily a competitor analysis tool – it is designed to analyse your own site and search for broken links, duplicate content and other factors that might be negatively affecting your SEO.
However, Siteliner will also provide you with a list of broken links on your competitors’ websites. And this allows you to perform broken link building, one of the most effective link building strategies ever invented.
For a complete guide to broken link building, see Chapter 6 of Brian Deans article Link Building for SEO: The Definitive Guide (2018 Update).
Jumpshot is a tool that analyses online human behaviour. Its focus is visitor behaviour on your website and understanding where your website is losing conversions.
However, it also performs advanced competitor analysis. You can use Jumpshot to:
- Find referring domains for any site and analyse keyword performance
- Identify the organic and paid search terms leading consumers to any website
- Quantify the value of those keywords across the web.
Unique amongst competitor analysis tools, Jumpshot helps you understand where, how and who you are losing sales to.
21. SEO Rambler
SEO Rambler is a tool for comparing your site against your top 10 competitors.
This tools tells you how optimized a page from your site is for a particular keyword. It also tells you how your SEO optimization compares to that of the top 10 from your niche. Here are some of the metrics that Rambler analyses:
- Readability ease
- Word count
- Images on the page
- External links
- Semantic relevance
- Page Authority and Domain Authority
- Google Pagespeed Insights score
The SEO Rambler will show you where you need to optimize more and where you have over-optimized.
22. Raven Tools
Raven Tools is a suite of search engine optimization tools for link building and SEO research and reporting. It’s designed primarily for SEO agencies rather than end users.
Raven uses data from Majestic, Moz, Google AdWords and OpenCalais to provide keyword and competitor intelligence and insights. These competitor analysis tools help you identify the best strategy to outrank your competitors in the SERPs.
23. Rank Ranger
Rank Ranger is a dedicated competition analysis tool. It’s designed to show how your site compares against your top competitors.
You’ll be able to compare your site with your competitors' sites in terms of metrics such as:
- Share of visibility
- Number of keywords in the top 20 Google results
- Share of total search volume
Here are some of the competitor analysis tools provided by Rank Ranger:
- Competitors who rank in the top 20 Google results for your keywords.
- Graphs show you which websites held the top 20 positions on Google for each of your keywords over the past 30 days
- Insights into your competitors’ attempts to increase their CTR.
- See all the changes they made to their page titles and meta descriptions over the past 30 days
- Competitor Rank Comparison report shows your website’s rank and that of your competitors’ side by side for all of your keywords.
- Website Rank Distribution report shows you how your and competitors’ keyword rankings are distributed across the various positions on the SERPs
SERPWoo is a tool that tracks, monitors, and analyses your rankings in the SERPs. It allows you to quickly spot new competitors, look up their stats and get an idea of what they are doing to get to the top.
SERPWoo allows you to quickly glance at all your niches/keywords, get intelligent alerts on what's moving, and be one step ahead of your competition. You can opt to get notifications as soon as a competitor increases one of their metrics significantly (e.g. when a website that was ranking #20 jumps to #7 or when a competitor’s backlinks increase by more than 10%).
In a nutshell, the purpose of SERPWoo’s various competitor analysis tools is to understand what your competitors are doing so that you can get ahead of them in the search results.
SEOBOOK provides a range of metrics on your competitors that allows you to understand their SEO strategy and emulate it and find gaps that your competitors have overlooked.
The metrics provided by SEOBOOK allow you to:
- Discover which keywords are most valuable in your niche
- Reveal strengths and weaknesses in your competitors' SEO strategies
- look up sites which have a similar ranking footprint as an existing competitor to uncover new areas & opportunities
- compare organic search results versus paid search ads
SEOBOOK’s metrics include:
- granular data across the global Bing & Google databases
- search volume & ad bid price estimates by keyword for over 120,000,000 words
- keyword data by site or by page across 74,000,000 domain names
Cocolyze is an SEO tool that keeps an eye on your Google ranking. It sends you a weekly update on he SEO activity of your pages. The dashboard allows you see at a glance key metrics for your various campaigns, such as average rank position and number of tracked keywords.
If you suddenly lose a position, this tool tells you exactly what happened and how to regain it.
You can also follow the Google ranking of your competitors and find out if they're ranking for the same keywords as you.
Competitor analysis tools are essential if you want to get ahead in the highly competitive SEO field.
By its nature SEO is competitive. So, it’s only natural that the starting point in designing an effective SEO strategy is competitor analysis.
SEO competitor analysis tools show you where your website stands within the SEO landscape of your niche.
Competitor analysis tools show you:
- Which organic keywords are bringing your competitors most of their traffic
- Which websites are providing your competitors with their most high-quality backlinks
- Which kinds of content are giving your competitors the most social shares
Your competitors' SEO strategies are the result of years of trial and error and thousands of dollars. With SEO competitor analysis you save yourself time and money and give yourself a huge head start.
This post was most recently updated on September 3rd, 2020