Conducting competitor link analysis for new targets





Blog Date

June 2, 2024


UK, Manchester

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Conducting competitor link analysis for new targets

Conducting Competitor Link Analysis for New Targets

Uncovering the Secret Weapons of Your Competition

As an SEO consultant at MCR SEO, I’m often asked by clients to help them gain a competitive edge in their industry. One of the most powerful strategies I’ve found is conducting a thorough competitor link analysis. It’s like being a spy and discovering your rival’s hidden arsenal – except instead of missiles, we’re talking about backlinks.

You see, in the world of search engine optimization, backlinks are the currency that can make or break your online presence. The more high-quality links you have pointing to your site, the more Google and other search engines will sit up and take notice. But what if your competitors are already hoarding all the good links? That’s where a little detective work comes in handy.

Uncovering Your Competitors’ Link Profiles

The first step in conducting a competitor link analysis is to identify who your main rivals are. This isn’t always as straightforward as it seems. As the SBA explains, you need to consider both direct competitors (those offering the same products or services to the same audience) and indirect competitors (those serving a different audience but with similar offerings).

Once you’ve got your list of competitors, it’s time to dive into the data. Tools like SEMrush and Ahrefs can give you a detailed breakdown of each company’s backlink profile. You’ll be able to see where their links are coming from, how strong those links are, and even uncover any shady tactics they might be using (which you definitely don’t want to emulate).

Here’s an example of what this could look like in a table:

Competitor Total Backlinks Referring Domains Top Backlink Sources
Acme SEO 2,854 482 Blog guest posts, directory listings, press releases
Widget Inc. 1,742 298 Industry forums, partner sites, social media profiles
Mega Marketing 3,612 654 Infographics, video content, influencer outreach

By analyzing this data, you can start to get a sense of where your competitors are focusing their link-building efforts. Are they prioritizing content marketing? Leveraging partnerships and collaborations? Diving into the world of influencer outreach?

Identifying Link Opportunities

Once you know what your competitors are up to, it’s time to get creative and find your own untapped link opportunities. HubSpot’s blog suggests looking for gaps in the market, like industry publications or directories that your rivals haven’t tapped into yet.

You can also take a closer look at the specific backlink sources they’re using and see if you can replicate or even improve upon those tactics. For example, if they’re killing it with guest posts, maybe you can reach out to the same blogs and pitch your own expert content. Or if they’re dominating the industry forums, it’s time for you to get active and start building relationships.

And don’t forget to keep an eye on any new links your competitors acquire over time. As the WSU library guide explains, market research is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. Staying on top of your competition’s link-building efforts will help you identify opportunities before they do.

Turning Insights into Action

Armed with your competitor link analysis, you’re now ready to put that knowledge into practice. Start by evaluating your own backlink profile and identifying any weak spots or areas for improvement. Maybe you’re relying too heavily on a single source, or perhaps there are entire channels you’ve been neglecting.

From there, you can start to build out a comprehensive link-building strategy that leverages the insights you’ve uncovered. Reach out to the same publications, directories, and influencers your competitors are targeting. Experiment with new content formats and outreach tactics. And always keep an eye on the metrics to see what’s working and what needs to be adjusted.

Remember, the key to winning the link-building game is to stay agile and adaptable. Your competitors are always going to be trying new things, so you need to be ready to pivot and seize any new opportunities that arise. With a little bit of creativity and a whole lot of determination, you can turn your link analysis into a serious competitive advantage.

So what are you waiting for? It’s time to put on your detective hat and start uncovering the secrets of your industry. Your next big backlink breakthrough could be just around the corner.

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