Find out about your competitors to differentiate and win
It’s easy to understand your competitors’ products and services. However, it’s more challenging to know what makes them different from you. So, find out about your competitors to differentiate and win.
Competition comes from everywhere.
Direct competitors are easier to isolate because they offer the same product as you. There are your indirect competitors. Those competing in your market but with different products. These are usually a bit harder to separate. And competitors can come from any angle. Think grocery shops competing against new supermarkets and then suddenly competing against Amazon. The supermarket didn’t expect Amazon to move into their area (or did they?). What chance did Mr Arkwright in his corner shop stand?
Understanding competition is vital in business. The following offers some ways to get a handle on how your competitors and where you stand in relation to them. In other words, are you winning or losing the competitive business battle?
Here’s how to find out about them.
There are many ways to find out about your competitors. You can use Google search tools to see who else has been searching for similar terms. For instance, check your social media. Sites like Facebook and Twitter to see what people say about your competitors.
No matter what you offer, you will always face competition. Therefore understanding competitors and their ways is one of the keys to success. There are some excellent tools out there to assist in speeding up this search.
Look at their social media accounts.
You should also see what content they post on their social media pages. Are they posting about products or services? Do they share helpful tips or advice? What do they say about themselves? These are all excellent ways to learn more about your competitors.
Monitoring social media like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn offer insight. Insight like what customers and competitors tell the world. People tend to speak their minds online. Especially if they are unhappy with something. Review sites like Yelp, Glassdoor, Trip Advisor, Google and others offer independent reviews. And most of which are freely available.
Check their websites.
Look at other companies’ websites in detail. Look for things like pricing, contact info, and any special offers they might have. And keep an eye out for changes. Again there are some excellent tools to assist you. And some claim to detect minute and coding changes.
Read their reviews.
If you’re looking at buying something online, read customer reviews. They’ll give you an idea of how well the product works and whether or not it was worth the money. It’s important to know but not always easy to assess competitors to determine things like:
- How well their products perform
- Their distribution and delivery strategies
- How they market their business
- How they implement new technologies
- And how customers view their brand
Speak to Your Customers
Many businesses dont this enough. And they like what you do because they are still paying you. The combination of customers not liking you and/or not paying you, then there’s even more reason to talk to them. They will also offer you a clear picture of the competition. They should be the first to know about a competitor’s new product or service offering. Ask them why they made the switch to you in the first place. Also, speak to former customers and find out why they went elsewhere. You can’t make effective changes without gathering the right information. And from the right places at the right time. Win-loss is an excellent way to squeeze out all insight to improve success rates.
Speak to Your Suppliers
Suppliers know many insider things about every business they work with. Getting to know your suppliers and treating them well is a smart move. While they may not share detailed information, you can gain a general idea. Perhaps knowing what and why they are purchasing. And even how much your competitors are buying. It may provide you insight into new products or technology available. So you can be first to market with quality and cost improvements. All information is useful when looking at the competition.
Speak to Your Competitors
Using a suitable approach, you can learn many things about your competitors. Asking the right questions. They may not welcome you with open arms and tell you everything you need to know. But you will get an overview, and over time you will build a picture. Understand how they work, treat people and their products. And importantly, any potential new markets they are looking at.
Watch Who Competitors Recruit
It’s easy to see where they focus by looking at their recruitment plans. Everything is done for a reason.
- Why are they recruiting a new sales director? Is it a new role? What happened to the last one?
- Does the recruitment isolate a new location?
- Or are they hiring new skills that indicate changes?
Job listings are full of future-facing information about a company. And on sites like Indeed, Monster and others, you can find their job listings. Or search keywords and cities they have used in previous advertising. Why? If they use a recruitment agency, the agency will copy and paste details.
Go to Industry events
Whenever those in the industry meet at a convention, exhibition. or seminar, tons of valuable information is shared through formal and informal channels. Seeing them in action gives you valuable insight. You can compare yourselves with a number of competitors. Get a drink into them, and they will retell some lovely war stories.
All competitor research starts by searching on Google for their website. And then checking out each page in detail. However, there are services like SpyFu, Ubersuggest, and Ihref. These sites allow you to check up on the keywords and Adwords competitors buy. There are the analytics services such as Google Trends and Google Alerts.
Find out about your competitors to differentiate and win
In conclusion, knowing about your competitors is essential to differentiate you. By understanding what makes them different will improve your offerings. And allow you to stand out in the market. These ideas can help you gain more detailed insights into what the competition is doing. Use them to improve your position. Make sure to keep up with the latest industry news and changes to stay ahead of the competition. In your competitive world, you’ll need every advantage you can get.
Art by Guilherme Stecanella