Knowing your competitors well is crucial to running a successful business. Learning about their weaknesses and strengths will allow you to stand out amongst them and increase your company’s market share in a major way.
However, conducting these types of analyses can be quite difficult, especially if you’re a new business owner who’s only recently started learning about the market surrounding your products or services.
Here, we’ll discuss this topic in detail to help you improve your business plan and reach all of your short-term goals in no time whatsoever.
So, without any further ado, let’s get right to the bottom of it!
Identify your competitors
The first step to truly meeting your competitors is learning how to identify them. Keep a lookout for companies offering similar products or services to the same clientele in your specific area. These are what’s called your direct competition. They are also what first comes to mind when someone mentions your competitors. Make sure you’re always keeping track of their activities, especially if they seem to be having a competitive advantage over you at the given moment.
Another important category is future/potential competitors. They are those companies that provide the same services or products like you do but to a different market segment. Future competitors are likely to enter your market in the near future, so keeping an eye on them is of the utmost importance.
Of course, there are many other types of competitors you should be aware of, so we advise you to do some research on the subject after you’re done reading our article. You can find many in-depth guides on competition identification online, so don’t forget to spend some time researching the topic in question.
Social media is your best friend
You wouldn’t believe how much you’re able to learn about a company by simply scrolling through their social media pages. They won’t only show glimpses into their business plans and marketing strategies – you’ll learn the customers’ perspectives as well. Read up on all comments, reviews, and ratings you can find. It’s the best way to learn your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses without too much effort.
Now, just because your competitor has gotten a couple of nasty comments on their Instagram, it doesn’t mean you can classify those as their weaknesses immediately. We’ve all dealt with difficult customers, so make sure this wasn’t a one-time occurrence. It should rather be something that many customers seem to agree on.
The same goes for your competitors’ strengths. Once you’ve successfully identified them, it’s time to make some comparisons! What can you do better than they do? Similarly, are there some things you can learn from them as well? The answers to these questions are the key to understanding your competitors’ weaknesses and strengths.
Talk to your customers
If one of your customers has switched from your competitor’s products to your own, you’ll need to know why. It’s an excellent way to learn more about your competition’s strengths and weaknesses, especially when their products or services are compared to what your business has to offer. You can find more details about comparative analysis at websites such as cadenceseo.com, if you’re interested.
Similarly, no matter how hard it is, we recommend you reach out to your unsatisfied customers to find out what your competitors are doing better than you in the eyes of your clientele.
Either way, speaking to your customers and learning about their opinions and preferences is an excellent way to learn more about your competitors. We recommend you do this as often as you can, as it’s a valuable source of information that will help you craft a profitable development plan for your business.
Do not forget about industry seminars!
Industry seminars and conventions are an excellent way to see your competitors in action. These events are one of the best places for conducting market research as they allow you to compare different competitors right off the bat!
Investing your time in a couple of expos can go a long way, so no matter how „pointless“ it may seem, it’s one of the quickest paths to success.
Make sure you choose the industry events as carefully as you can since you cannot attend them all. The general rule is this: if your biggest competitors are participating, you should be there too!
Hire professional market researchers to do the job for you
As you can already see, learning your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses is not an easy task. It takes loads of work, dedication, and knowledge. It’s not something that should be left to amateurs, especially when it’s supposed to be an important part of your future business plan.
We advise you to outsource a couple of industry professionals to help you do this more efficiently and more quickly. It’s certainly an investment worth making – you’ll quickly see some growth in your company once you’re able to take advantage of this info.
Don’t forget to keep an eye on all newcomers to the market.
Lastly, the market and all of its participants aren’t something set in stone. Circumstances change incredibly quickly nowadays, so you’ll always need to make new competitor analyses to compensate for the speed at which the market grows.
Again, identifying and then meeting your competitors is a crucial factor to your business plan as a whole, so you’ll always need to be up to date with the newest events happening on the market. Don’t be afraid to seek help from professionals if you ever feel overwhelmed with the amount of data you acquire during your research.
The bottom line
The companies you’re competing with have their own strengths and weaknesses. Learning and analyzing these is of the utmost importance for your company’s profits. It’s not always an easy task to handle, but it’s something that needs to be done one way or the other.
We hope our article brought some light to the subject and we wish you the best of luck in all of your future endeavors.