How to Leverage Your Competition to Help Grow Your Business


Competition may not be something everyone hopes for, but it doesn’t always have to hinder business growth. Not having competition can cause your business to become stagnant and reluctant to innovate. If the goal is to make clients happy, taking some pointers from your competition can help you optimize your business and help to keep things fresh so you can continue to thrive in your industry.

Here are some tips on how to use your competition to your advantage: 

1. Run a search on your competitors

If you’re just starting out or just trying to boost your online presence, start by looking into your competitors’ online activity. This is a great way to evaluate what you need to improve on and how you can implement new strategies into your game plan. Look into analysis tools such as Spyfu and SEMrush to view competitor information such as keyword rankings, organic search activity, paid ad usage, and much more.

2. Check out your competition’s social networks

Social media platforms provide one of the easiest and cheapest ways to analyze your competition, especially if they are actively posting. Pay attention to what posts are getting the most likes and what people are saying in the comments. This will help you get to know your audiences’ preferences and help you to appeal to them through your own social media profiles. This is especially helpful for designers who would like to expand their network, as they can see the types of images that get the most attention from viewers.

3. Ask your customers

Another way to find out about your competition is to ask your customers about their previous experiences. If you’re a designer, you ask customers who they’ve used in the past and what they liked and didn’t like. This will not only help you learn more about your clients’ tastes, but also about other designers. If you represent a brand, you can inquire about the products they have purchased in the past and how those brands measured up.

4. Conduct a survey

If you want to gather statistical data relating about your direct competition, consider conducting a survey. Questions with multiple choices are more likely to get filled out rather than open-ended responses. Providing an “other” option with a space to write-in can also be extremely helpful in uncovering new competitors. You may also want to have your respondents identify their role in the industry early on, and have the questions built around each type of person. If you’re having trouble getting people to participate, you may want to offer an incentive such as gift cards, product giveaways, or even a cash prize. When thinking of the questions to ask, think about what you want to learn and how you can use the information to your benefit. 

Erin Gilbert