What can I do to make my brand stand out?
How can I impact consumer decisions without being too different?
If you're a marketer and you're pondering upon these challenges, the solution is well-executed competition analysis. It would equip you with the information you need to make strategic marketing decisions.
Let's have a look at how.
Step 1- Identifying Your Brand's Competitors
You must analyze two types of competitors.
• Direct competition
Identifying companies who sell similar items or services to the same clients through the same distribution channels as you is the first key step. You must analyze your brand for estimating entry barriers and evaluating product viability.
• Indirect competition
The next step is to identify online sellers that offer differentiated products but can also satisfy the same customer demand. Keep these brands in your competitive analysis for they can cross over into the direct competitor zone any time.
Step 2- Performing a SWOT Analysis of Competitors
After identifying your competitors, analyzing their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats is important. This is called a SWOT analysis. Furthermore, contrast their weaknesses with your strengths. This can be a good way to capitalize on the opportunities they are missing out on.
Swot Analysis: Factors To Look Out For:
Strength: One of the primary strengths of eCommerce businesses is their extensive accessibility.
Weakness: Being industry specific is one main weakness of eCommerce businesses.
Opportunity: The market for eCommerce businesses is ever growing and immensely dynamic.
Threats: Since the barriers to entry in the eCommerce industry are low, the biggest threat it poses is competition.
Step 3- Determining Market Positioning of Competitors Determining the market position of competitors can help in differentiating your offers and create value for your market. To do just that you should:
• Identify the primary group of customer needs.
• Choose a geographic region to study.
• Decide whether you would keep tabs on the entire market for a product or only a specific segment.
• Select a price range for analyzing and identifying the primary benefits to the customer at different price points.
Step 4- Researching Competitors' Sales Tactics
Know about your competitors' sales process, their sales channels, their total sales volume, annual revenue, regularity in discounts, offers, etc. This will provide you with an idea about how competitive their sales process is. With this, you will also come to know about how you need to prepare your sales representatives to compete at the final stage of buying.
Step 5- Looking At Competitors' Pricing Strategy
For correctly pricing your product, it is pertinent for you to understand the pricing of your competitors. Perceptual mapping will help you identify how different competitors price their products and where you could fit in. Apart from analyzing pricing, also focus on offers or discounts that they offer and identify how you might match those perks to compete.
Step 6- Ensure Meeting Competitive Shipping Costs
Take a look at your competitors' shipping costs and ensure you're meeting, if not exceeding, those prices. In case free shipping isn't a practical option, consider differentiating in other ways through discounts, giveaways, etc.
Step 7- Reviewing Competitors’ Social Media Performance
Evaluate your competitor's social media presence and engagement rates. Identify their content kind, tone, and focus. Also, take a look at their mode and frequency of customer interaction. Finally, use a similar grading scale, compare all your competitors, and identify opportunities on social media that your brand can leverage.
Conducting an effective competitive analysis requires a perfect blend of personal expertise, market knowledge, domain expertise, marketing, and branding skills. Thus, make sure to count on them when comparing yourself against the competition. Should your brand need any help, Socially India has already kept its virtual and physical doors open!