A competitive analysis is the process of researching your competitors to learn more about their strengths, weaknesses, products, and marketing strategies. Done properly, a competitive analysis can provide data that informs your strategy and business decisions.
Here are the steps on how to do a competitive analysis:
- Define your goals. What do you hope to achieve? Do you want to identify new market opportunities? Do you want to learn from your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses? Once you know your goals, you can tailor your analysis accordingly.
- Determine what data you need to collect. What information do you need to know about your competitors? This could include their products, pricing, marketing strategies, customer base, and financial performance. Once you know what data you need, you can start collecting it.
- Identify your competitors. Who are your direct and indirect competitors? Direct competitors are businesses that sell the same products or services as you do. Indirect competitors are businesses that sell different products or services, but that compete for the same customers. Once you know who your competitors are, you can start researching them.
- Collect your data. There are a number of ways to collect data about your competitors. You can conduct online research, read industry publications, attend trade shows, and talk to customers. The more data you collect, the better informed your analysis will be.
- Analyze your data. Once you have collected your data, you need to analyze it. This involves identifying your competitors’ strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. You can use a SWOT (strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis to help you with this.
- Use your findings to improve your business. Once you have analyzed your data, you can use your findings to improve your business. This could involve changing your products, pricing, marketing strategies, or customer service. The goal of a competitive analysis is to help you make better business decisions.
Here are some additional tips for doing a competitive analysis:
- Be objective. It is important to be objective when conducting a competitive analysis. Don’t let your personal biases influence your findings.
- Be thorough. The more thorough your analysis is, the more accurate it will be. Make sure to collect data from a variety of sources.
- Be timely. The competitive landscape is constantly changing. Make sure to update your analysis on a regular basis.
A competitive analysis can be a valuable tool for businesses of all sizes. By following these steps, you can conduct a thorough and objective analysis that will help you improve your business.