Competitive Analysis: Crucial for Online Reputation Management

Competitive Analysis for Crucial for Online Reputation Management

In the world of online reputation management, there are always exciting new SEO tips and tricks coming down the pipeline. These new techniques are all well and good, and staying up to speed on industry happenings is an absolute must. The danger is that sometimes the new stuff distracts us from the basics—like the competitive analysis.

For members of the online reputation management industry, however, it’s vital to never forget the fundamentals. When embarking on a new campaign, it’s of the essence to properly evaluate the sites you’re competing against (or seeking to suppress, as the case may be). But what are the most important things to consider when conducting competitive analysis?

Content is King

In the land of online reputation management, it’s almost a cliché to say that content is king. It’s become a cliché because it’s true, though, and content should be an integral part of your competitive analysis.

If the competitors’ sites you are looking at are solid in the content department, well, you’ll just have to see to it that you’re more solid. Look at things like the sheer volume of content they’re producing, as well as a social media presence. Also remember that, when it comes to content, it’s not always about the text, but also other media, images, and so forth.

Respecting Authority

For reputation management pros, the concept of authority is vital. Sure, your rivals and online foes may have a lot of content, but is it actually good content? If their content lacks authority, then you’ve got an ace in the hole.

Use a tool like Open Site Explorer to assess the domain authority and page authority of competing sites. Look at how often the content is shared via social media. See if there is an overemphasis on certain anchor text phrases. All of this information can prove helpful to you as you seek to determine what kind of content you’ll need to create, and how you need to push it out there.

Opportunity Knocks

A final step in the competitive analysis is to simply visit the site and assess it. Look at the structure of the site, and see what works. Note where there could be improvements made. Ultimately, look to see how you can ensure that your content blows it away (or at the very least stands on par with it).

Here there are several things to look for, and many questions to ask. Look at on-page keyword targeting within titles, the copy itself, headings, and internal link anchor text. Look at the overall hierarchy of the site, and determine whether it illustrates advantageous information architecture. See if the site used sitemaps to deliver content to search engines. All of these are important factors—not just for your competitors, but for you.

The Bottom Line for Online Reputation Management Companies

The moral of the story here is simply that SEO is ever-changing, and always in flux, but there are a few fundamentals that are never going to change. Conducing this kind of rigorous competitive analysis is always going to provide you with an edge in your campaigns.

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