By: Glenn Judah
Websites are constantly fighting it out for SEO supremacy. Just because you rank No. 1 right now does not guarantee you will be in the top spot in a week, month or year down the road.
The ability to identify and track your keyword competition will help you do battle in this endless war for search engine ranking position.
How many competitors could I be up against?
Your website could have hundreds of different competitors. It depends on the number keywords a website identifies as valuable. Each individual keyword could have a completely different set of competitors.
If there are 10 ranking positions on each page of search results and you have 20 different keywords, you could be facing 200 hundred different competitors. And that’s just the competition trying to rank on the first page of results.
What are some tools to track my SEO competition?
Luckily, there are free and paid tools to help identify keyword competition and where they rank.
- SpyFu’s free version provides a breakdown your competitors’ SEO rankings, AdWords history and shared keywords. SpyFu does offer subscription plans to dive deeper into its data. There are similar services provided by SearchMetrics and Sistrix.
The SpyFu dashboard will provide stats like this:
- SEMRush is a paid tool that offers keyword competition tracking data including keyword value, search volume and local search rankings.
- Moz has a tool that can track how difficult it could be to rank for a keyword. This tool uses search volume and competition rankings to create an overall score. This paid tool can help identify your keyword weaknesses.
Will it help if I go incognito?
Beyond online tools to track your SEO competition, you can perform localized searches using Google Chrome’s incognito browsing feature.
- Open a new incognito browsing window. This can be found under settings in Google Chrome.
- Go to google.com and change your location settings to your city.
- Perform searches for your keywords to see where your competition ranks.
How can I learn from my competition?
After you have identified your top SEO competitors it’s now time to learn from their websites. Questions you should answer:
- How and where are they are using keywords?
- How similar or different is their website content from mine?
- What sites are they linking out to?
Answering these questions can provide competitive analysis and lead to new strategies to out rank your competition.