binoculars

10 best competitor
benchmarking tools in 2019

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Veena Ramakrishnan
September 13, 2019 • 8 min read

How do you find out what your competitors are up to? Things you might need: the coolest pair of shades, a trenchcoat, and binoculars. These are essential if you are a spy from the cold war. If, however, you’re a modern-day marketer, you can put away the fake nose and mustache because all you need is a computer and an internet connection.

Oh, and some tools to do the job.

Choosing a competitor benchmarking tool

Competition is inevitable. It’s also not so fun to analyze, but ultimately it is crucial to have competitive intelligence as part of your marketing strategy. Luckily there are several competitor benchmarking tools that will do the work and keep an eye on your competitors for you. We’ve curated a comprehensive list of competitor benchmarking tools to help you keep tabs on what your competitors are up to:

  • Competitor benchmarking tools for social media
  • Competitor benchmarking tools for SEO
  • Competitor benchmarking tools for content

Competitor benchmarking tools for social media

In the ever-changing social media landscape, the one constant is your competition. Your content quality and campaign performance shouldn’t just be measured with engagement rates but also compared on how they stack up against your peers and your industry.

What to look for in a competitor benchmarking tool for social media?

Here’s what you should look for when evaluating a competitor benchmarking tool for social media:

  • Fan growth is an indicator of the followers you have gained over a set period of time. It is important to not just measure the new followers you have gained but also to compare and measure your competitors’ to see how you fare against them.
  • Content frequency gives you insights on how often your competitors post on social media, the volume of content they have published, the ratio between videos, images, links, and so on. These insights will go a long way in helping you fine-tune your content strategy.
  • Content engagement is an indicator of the impact your content is having. Insights into the engagement metrics of your competitors’ will help you understand which type of content gets them more engagement from their audience.
  • Customer service (response rate & response times) helps you answer questions on how many user posts your competitors responded to and how long it took for them to respond, how well are they replying to their fans, are they replying to every fan post and so on.
  • Industry benchmarks give you a comprehensive look at the position of your brand in your industry and how you stack up against them.
  • Competitive-set benchmarks give you a definitive look into the position of your brand against your direct competitors whom you compete within your industry.
  • Regional benchmarks help you identify the position and performance of your brand against your direct competitors within a specific region.
  • Share of voice gives you a definitive look at how much your brand dominates on a social network in comparison with your competitors. This will help you compare the volume of posts and engagement your competitors had received in a given period.
  • Campaign Intelligence helps you evaluate past campaign performances to make strategic decisions on your upcoming brand initiatives. By looking at your competitor’s campaign performance you get insights on engagement metrics, impressions, reactions, and so on to tweak your campaigns for better performance.
  • Promoted post-detection: Paid social efforts help brands get more visibility than organic reach does. Knowing which posts your competitors are putting their money behind can help you build your social strategy and also help you find the type of content your competitors prefer to use.
  • Sentiment analysis helps you identify how a certain brand or post is perceived by people. By applying sentiment analysis on your competitor’s profile you can, to a certain degree, get an idea of how people had reacted to a competitor’s campaign and in turn borrow ideas from them to tweak yours. This also applies to solve consumer queries that your competitors haven’t by filtering posts based on negative sentiment they had received.

1. Unmetric

We might be biased here, but it’s our blog so we’ll put Unmetric at the top. 🙂

Unmetric is an AI-powered, brand-focused social media intelligence platform that helps companies gather reliable social media data to perform better on social.

This means creating more engaging content, getting more certainty around your social strategy, and automating tedious tasks like reporting.

It provides a host of features that will help you analyze your brand’s social media performance and make better marketing decisions.

  • You can dissect which type of your posts garner more engagement and at what time.
  • Using the tool’s hashtag tracker, you can discover the most engaging hashtags used by your brand.
  • You can also benchmark your social media performance against competitors from your industry.

Unmetric provides in-depth visual intelligence and analytics to help marketers decide which images engage best for their brand. The color and object analysis will help you discover content ideas by searching for branded social content based on dominant colors and/or objects used within images and analyze their performance. You can filter the results further based on industry and geography.

Unmetric

But here’s my personal favorite functionality:

Unmetric’s latest feature is the outliers detection functionality that helps reduce time to insight and find the insight needles in the data haystack. You can detect posts that garnered the most number of likes, comments, shares, retweets, replies, and much more to help you discover the kind of posts/tweets that work in your industry. Now, how cool is that?

Here’s an interesting use case video on how the Red Socks Company created a hit campaign by researching what other brands did around Lost Sock Day using Unmetric.

Pricing: Starting from $1000 per month
G2Crowd Rating: 4.2

2. Phlanx

Phlanx is an Instagram engagement calculator that offers an array of features to help you keep an eye on your competitors. For starters, you get stats on the engagement rate, follower growth, audience demographics, brand mentions, and so on to help you track your competitors’ progress on Instagram. The tool also has an Influencer Auditor feature that churns out reports of an influencer’s profile with their engagement rate, follower count, and more.

Phlanx

Pricing: Starting from $25 per month
G2Crowd Rating: N/A

Competitor benchmarking tools for SEO

Tracking your competitors is just as important as monitoring your search engine optimization. You need to know which keyword they rank for, which pages bring the most search engine traffic for them, what their top landing pages are, and so on to get ahead.

3. Ahrefs

Ahrefs is a powerful SEO tool that offers an array of features. The tool’s Site Explorer helps you find what keywords your competitors are ranking for and which pages bring the most search engine traffic for them. You can also see how much traffic each keyword brings them. This tool also helps you to assess the quality of your competitors’ backlink profiles.

Ahrefs

Pricing: Starting from $99 per month
G2Crowd Rating: 4.5

4. SEMrush

SEMrush is yet another comprehensive SEO tool to help you keep an eye on your competitors. This tool helps you discover your competitors’ traffic volume, traffic source, mobile vs desktop traffic, top landing pages, subdomains, and much more. In addition to that, you can also monitor your competitors’ marketing activities and strategies by looking for an audience overlap, identifying your competitors’ business connections, traffic sources, and so on. These features will not only uncover your competitors’ strategies but also help you fine-tune your content strategy.

SEMrush

Pricing: Starting from $99 per month
G2Crowd Rating: 4.5

5. Alexa

Amazon’s Alexa is an excellent SEO tool for competitive website analysis. This tool allows you to compare competitors’ website traffic, share of voice, keywords, backlinks, and much more. Alexa helps you discover which other sites share your audience to help you uncover new competitors and understand how they reach their audience more effectively. In addition to that, Alexa helps you capture a larger share of voice among your audience by refining your SEM, SEO, and content strategy and pinpointing your competitors’ success tactics.

Alexa

Pricing: Starting from $149 per month
G2Crowd Rating: 4.2

6. BuiltWith

BuiltWith is the tool to use to help you find what websites are built with. The best way to see how you fare against your competitors is to dissect how they have built their websites, what are the technologies they have used, and so on.

This tool allows you to get lists on websites that use a specific keyword and then further break it down by technology, location, spend, ranking, and more. You can also track the rise and fall of a specific technology and it’s usage across the web over the last 12+ years. Furthermore, you can view the usage trends for a particular sector or group of technologies to get a snapshot of who the players are in each category and the market share held by each competing technology.

BuiltWith

Pricing: Starting from $295 per month
G2Crowd Rating: 4.2

7. Hitwise

Hitwise offers you all the intel you need to get ahead of the competition. For starters, you can benchmark your online performance and find out how you rank against your competitors in terms of engagement and volume metrics. You can also analyze the purchasing journey of your consumers and find how they search, consider, and purchase within your industry to help you identify your position across each stage of a consumer’s purchasing journey online. Not just that, the tool also projects the daily movements in searches, product trends, and categories on competitor sites and online marketplaces.

Hitwise

Pricing: N/A
G2Crowd Rating: N/A

8. Crayon

Crayon is a market and competitive intelligence platform that helps you track a company’s entire digital footprint. Using Crayon you can keep tabs on every move of your competitors, right from a pricing change, customer reviews to marketing campaigns, and more. The tool’s competitive analysis platform helps you filter all the noise to analyze and identify market trends.

Crayon

Pricing: N/A
G2Crowd Rating: 4.3

Competitor benchmarking tools for content

As far as defining your brand’s content marketing strategy goes, it is considered incomplete without having intel on your competitors’ content marketing. Knowing a competitor’s best performing content, most engaging content, content tactics and so on are valuable to fine-tune your content strategy.

9. Buzzsumo

BuzzSumo is a great tool to get content insights that best resonates with your audience. Their brand monitoring solution helps you to stay ahead of topics that are engaging with your audience. It also helps you create compelling content and keep a tab on what your competitors are up to.

Using Buzzsumo you can analyze what content performs best for any topic or competitor. Buzzsumo’s competitor research gives you insights into what content is getting traction for your competitors, what networks are they having success in, who is sharing their content, and much more. This is a comprehensive tool that offers an array of solutions to track your social and SEO footprint.

Buzzsumo

Pricing: Starting from $99 per month
G2Crowd Rating: 4.5

10. Similarweb

Similarweb helps you get visibility on the best performing content of any site to help you understand how to drive more engagement from your audience. This tool also reveals your competitors’ paid and organic keywords along with their traffic share ranks and landing pages. Similarweb also masquerades as the Google Analytics of your competitors’ websites by revealing their website traffic, referral traffic, and much more. In addition to that, you also get intel on your competitors’ PPC and display advertising.

Similarweb

Pricing: N/A
G2Crowd Rating: 4.2

Conclusion

To rise above the cut-throat competition, you need all the ninja-class tools possible to keep tabs on your competitors’ every move and always stay one step ahead. The above-mentioned tools can help you with all of that and more. Based on your needs and what fits your budget best, you can take a call on which one of these tools will boost your performance.

If we missed your favorite tool, send us a tweet @unmetric and we’ll add it to the list!

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