When starting out with any SEO (search engine optimization) campaign, it’s critical to do a thorough competitor analysis on your competitors to see how your website will do against your competition. You need to understand which SEO methods will yield the greatest ROI on your efforts.

If you have done some keyword research before, take a couple of your main keywords and type them into Google. Which websites are turning up repeatedly for those keywords? Those will be your foremost competitors as they are targeteding the same keywords that you are targeting. List these competitors in an excel sheet where you can start analysing them even further.

There are many factors you can use to measure each competitor, but find below a couple of ones that you can start using immediately to measure what you are up against.

SEO competitor analysis methods

  • Domain age: How long has the domain been active and indexed by Google? It’s a fact that newer domains takes a long time before they are fully indexed.
  • Alexa score: Alexa.com will give you a good indication of the amount of traffic the website is generating.
  • Number of pages indexed: Bigger websites tends to rank higher in Google because of the amount of content on these websites. Do a simple site: www.domain.com search on Google to find the amount of pages the competitor has indexed.
  • Backlinks: Links are still the driving force of SEO. View how many links the competitor has. Use tools such as opensiteexplorer.org to find this information.
  • Linking domains: Check how many different domains are linking to them. This will give you a good indication of the reach of their links.
  • Domain authority:¬†This is another metric that can be obtained from opensiteexplorer.org. The higher the domain authority, the better.
  • Rankings: Check which keyword phrases they are currently targeting and how you can use the same keywords to rank.