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One great thing about the internet is that you can quickly gather heaps of data concerning your competition—not too shabby compared to those Yellow Pages days of yesteryear.

How to Quickly Analyze Your SEO Competition

A solid competitor will highlight their competitive advantages on their website to attract more

customers. With this in mind, researching your competition is far easier and faster than ever. Here’s how to go about this in 2022 and beyond:

  1. Keyword Research

SEMrush allows you to check competitive keywords for free. While you may be able to eyeball your competitor’s keywords at the small and local business level without it, if there’s any complexity in doing so, SEMrush will help add clarity—free of charge!

  1. On-Site Optimization

One major ranking factor is your competitor’s ability to optimize their website for their target keywords. Their primary keywords must appear in the page title (the big blue one that pops up when you do a Google search), in their meta description, and on the page itself (about 2-3 times or so).

Watch for an “unnatural” use of keywords, meaning those that sound “awkward” or “forced” when read out loud. Google does not like this kind of optimization. However, it still pulls ranking ability but not as much as keywords that sound “natural” (those you barely notice while reading the sentence out loud).

Overdoing or underdoing this represents an opportunity for you to gain an advantage.

  1. Internal Linking

Competitor site links that link to other pages on their site is called “internal links.” This is another vital ranking factor Google analyzes.

There are dozens of articles (and plenty of hot debate) about the best internal linking practices. Yet, generally, internal links should make it easy for users to navigate your site, link to more helpful information, and point most frequently to the most important pages on your site.

Check out this great in-depth blog post on internal linking from Neil Patel.

  1. Content Analysis

The uniqueness of content outshines all other content creation aspects when it comes to getting noticed by Google.

Long is good. But if it’s already been said 10,000 times elsewhere, it’s not as good as something brand new. Check your competition for frequency, rank, and freshness.

  1. Design

Your website doesn’t need to be beautiful or even eye-popping (although both are good). But it does need to reflect a modern look to show you’re still in business (not all SMBs understand that).

It must also feature easy-to-use functionality and quick speeds while making sense to visitors—these factors may suggest it’s time to seek a professional opinion.

If your competition has an older-looking design, it can allow you to trump them in search.

Wrapping Up

So yes, analyzing competition at the local level—featuring smaller websites—isn’t an overwhelming task. Moreover, you’ll frequently unearth accessible opportunities for nice gains in your search rankings.

 

 

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