When you are first starting to try to improve where your website lands on the SERP (Search Engine Results Page), it can be hard to narrow down what you should do first. Organic growth of your website can be overwhelming at times but as the saying goes, “Everyone has to start somewhere”. One of the best places you can start is by knowing where you stand in comparison to your competition.
If you want to compete with companies in your local area, region, country, or even the world then you need to know what you are up against. Search for what you offer like products and services and see what results come up. What companies do you see first and why are they at the top of the list? This is what evaluating your competition is all about.
You can use tools like google analytics or other paid services to check out some of these statistics for you or you can look for yourself. There are some key factors that search engines look for when rating where a website should land on the ranking. So what kind of things are they looking for and why?
The first step in search engine optimization (SEO) is Keywords. These are highly searched words that people are looking for on the web. If you wanted to look for fresh produce then you would type that phrase in the search bar. The first website that comes up will most likely have those keywords in their content, or their blogs and information. They may use other keywords or phrases like “locally grown produce”, “fresh organic produce”, or “best selection of fruits and vegetables”. You’ll want to pay attention to the words they use and try to incorporate those keywords and phrases, or something similar, into your own content. Doing a search query for keyword suggestions or ideas is also helpful. You’ll also want to make sure you have unique content for each web page you have as repeating content may hurt your rank.
You’ll also want to look at a few other things. One thing in particular is the amount of words you use in your content. A one paragraph blurb about what you offer may be straight and to the point but it’s not very comprehensive. When search engines rate your website they would consider this as lacking or “thin” content. This may be a big reason that your competition is getting more traffic than you. Make sure to include a thorough explanation of your services, products, and company using your list of keywords in all the content you post to your website as this makes for a great user experience.
You may also want to consider writing or hiring someone to start blogging on a fairly regular basis. You can do monthly or weekly blog posts, whatever seems appropriate for your time and business. The articles should be focused on subject matter that positions you as an expert in your field. This adds value and education for your customers and can also drive more traffic to your site if you link it to social media sites like, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Chances are high that your competitor is getting their name out there with high quality content.
There are a number of factors that go into what gets your website ranked high on SERP. These few things that you can gain by checking out your competition will give you a good idea of what you are up against and where to start. Focus on what your core services and products are to begin with and make sure those are your best pieces of content. Strengthening your content can take a while, but in the long run it is well worth your time and you will see increases in your ranking.
So here’s a list of where to get started in evaluating your competition.
- Length of Content
- Quality of Content
- Link to social media