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5 Competitor Analysis Tools That Will Help You Gain Deep Insight

Updated: Jan 27, 2021

Competitor Analysis can be a fascinating and necessary exercise to creating a strategy that wins you business, however many of us have a hard time working out where to start. I've used many a tool over the years and have seen many improve and some die a death. These are the best of the bunch for Competitor Analysis.


Quick Reference: Top 5 Competitor Analysis Tools

  1. SEMRush - Website, Social and PPC Analysis

  2. Sprout Social - Powerful Social Media Analysis

  3. SimilarWeb - Powerful Website Analysis

  4. Mailcharts - Email Marketing Analysis

  5. SpyFu - Pay-Per-Click Analysis

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SEMRush


Free Trial? Yes, usage based.

Priced at: Starting At Around £90 A Month.

Area Of Focus: Jack-Of-All


SEMRush is one of my favourite tools on the market. It's quick analysis allows me to analyse my top organic search competitors and to get pretty deep insight into their organic search presence. It gives suggestions on what to try to rank for...


...and it also gives you a really useful positioning map for finding out how your company stacks up in the market.

It's got a really great selection of different kinds of tools, some paid, some free. But be careful, it's usage based so if you need to do large volumes of searches, you're going to need to purchase a lisence.


It's a great all rounder and if you're throwing together a general analysis, it will definitely get the job done. The fact that it's web based allows SEMRush to build lists of competitors for you so you don't even have to do any hard work establishing who your competitors are as long as your website accurately represents what you do.


SproutSocial


Free Trial? Yes, 30 days.

Priced at: Starting At Around £75 A Month.

Area Of Focus: Social Media (it's in the name...)


Sprout to us is the king of social media tools - it's pricey, but in our opinion is worth every penny if you can justify the cost. It's bloody powerful and packs a great set of analysis tools. We've tried everything from Buffer to Hootsuite and everything in-between but there isn't a single tool that even comes close to stacking upto the power of Sprout.


Admittedly, most of the alternative tools are significantly cheaper - but you really get what you pay for with Sprout. Especially if you're doing a competitor analysis, just be warned - you'll need a license to do comp-analysis (yep... sorry - if you need a totally free social media competitor analysis tool you can try Social Blade).



For all intents and purposes, Sprout will get pretty much everything you need done for no cost at all unless you do competitor analysis but if you need to do more complex analysis like cross referencing audience psychographic models you'll either need to ask us, or build something yourself.


SimilarWeb


Free Trial? Yes, 7 days.

Priced at: Starting At Around £90 A Month.

Area Of Focus: Search Engine Optimisation


Okay, I know.... SimilarWeb is really similar to SEMRush, but hear me out here. SEMRush is a great jack-of-all, but SimilarWeb is a website powerhouse. It really delivers everything you need when it comes to web analysis. Its in-depth reporting offers a multitude of ways you can dive into your competitors web analytics.

One really useful feature I've found is the Organic/Paid competitor comparison tables as seen below. This is not only a great way of finding your web competitors, it's also a great method to check how you stack up in your channel performance.

By comparing the two tables, you can also determine the main strategies of your competitors and you can plot all the information on a strategy canvas to determine your gaps in the strategic market. This is a really important point. If you can find the parts of the market that are low competition and relatively easy to enter, you can capture this low hanging fruit and move to take market share a lot faster.


Mailcharts


Free Trial? Yes, there is a free tier.

Priced at: Starting At Around £75 A Month.

Area Of Focus: Email


Mailcharts is a bit of a misnomer for us. It's saved us countless hours of subscribing to competitor mail lists, adjusting our site behaviour to categorise ourselves into different buckets and then actually dissecting the emails that we receive. Seriously, that's pretty time consuming stuff and Mailcharts does it all for us automatically.

I have no idea how they have managed to accomplish this, but my god... I'm so glad they have. If you get a chance, just check it out. It's really cool.


One feature we love here is the "most popular terms" tool. It summarises the most successful terms your competitors are using and it allows you to instantly see what kind of language is working for your competitors...


Have you got any idea how much hard work and money this has saved us on expert copywriting analysis fees? Let me tell you. It's a lot.


No longer do you have to spend hours testing different subject lines, you can just hop onto Mailcharts and instantly see what is going to generate clicks in your market.



SpyFu


Free Trial? Yes, very good free usage.

Priced at: Starting At: Starting at around £25 A Month.

Area Of Focus: Pay-Per-Click


SpyFu could be considered another Jack-Of-All, but I disagree. It's all rounder tools don't stack up against the competition and I'm not sure why they've decided to include this stuff. What this platform is really good for is PPC Analysis. It's paid media competitor analysis tools are awesome and they allow for some really interesting data.

What's great is the instant strategy canvasing tool they provide which allows you to analyse SEM keywords instantly. It has a lot of really in-depth SEM reporting, however it does fall short with other advertising networks. If you're going with a SEM focused approach to your analysis, SpyFu is going to give you the tools you need.


I also like how it includes historical ad data. You can look back over time at what has worked in the past, so if you know the holiday season is coming up - you can find out what worked for your competitors last year and factor this into your plan.


I hope you've found this summary of tools helpful. If at any point you're struggling with your competitor analysis, feel free to sign up for a 100% free consultation with one of our experts by clicking this link. We'll be happy to walk you through some of our insights and help you get over any hurdles you might be encountering.


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