It’s always good to know your enemies, especially in digital marketing. That’s why competitive intelligence is so important in today’s information age. Understanding how your rivals attract traffic, which channels they use and what type of content they produce gives you invaluable information. You can use these insights to adjust your marketing strategy, launch new campaigns or simply develop new ideas by stealing best practices. The same applies to SEO and keyword strategy. Companies that know how to find competitors’ keywords, evaluate them and incorporate this information into their strategy will have a major advantage over rivals.

Methods To Help You Find Competitors’ Keywords

Manually

Make no mistake, identifying the keywords of your competitors can be done manually, but it takes a lot of time and won’t be very accurate. To do this, you’d need to study the source code of your competitor’s website. Simply go to their homepage and press “Ctrl + U” on your keyboard. This opens the source code of the website and allows you to analyze it for keywords. Check the words used in the meta tag, titles, images alt texts and those that are marked in bold. Since, these days, most companies optimize their content and layout for search engines, you should be able to identify their main keywords using this process.

However, to get the complete picture, you would then have to repeat the same process for all subpages on the domain and even then, you might not obtain a 100% accurate overview. This is because some webmasters don’t add meta tags to all their sites. Additionally, you’d get minimal information on keywords used in Adwords and other SEM campaigns. Due to the low accuracy and comprehensiveness of this manual process and the long time required to complete it, most marketers therefore turn to competitor analysis tools to identify their rivals’ keywords.

Technology

Using digital tools to find competitors’ keywords will not only save time, but it can often prove the most accurate method too. Tools can provide the required data within seconds, in addition to delivering further information on keyword competitiveness, search volume, the firms’ SERP and more. All this helps you gain a full picture of your competitors’ keywords, and which one of those keywords might be best suited for your own digital marketing campaigns.

Moreover, you’ll also get insights into your rivals’ SEM keywords, messages and investment. This can reveal their paid ad strategy on search engines which enables you to kick-start your own SEM campaign or optimize it by stealing your competitors’ best practices.

Another advantage of competitor analysis tools is that they can bring you competitor keyword information in real-time. This means that if your rivals make changes to one of their campaigns, such as lowering their price, announcing a new feature or removing a service, you’ll be ready to react and adjust your strategy immediately.

Conclusion

The secret to identifying your competitors’ keywords successfully lies in the method you choose. If you’re an early-stage startup with next to no budget, the manual method, while less accurate and powerful, might make sense because it comes at no additional cost. However, if you want to get serious about SEO and growth-hacking, taking advantage of competitor analysis tools is an absolute must. They’ll save you a lot of time, give you much more valuable and precise information and you’ll even be able to receive alerts in order to monitor your competitors 24/7. Obviously, these tools might affect your marketing budget, but they’re well worth it for your business.