If your competitors are ranking number one on search engine results, they have an advantage
over you. By analyzing the top web pages of your competitors, you can see what type of
content is helping them rank first and can use this information to create your own great
This tutorial will show you how to find your competitors’ top pages and repurpose the
information to help your company rank number one for your industry.
STEP 1. SEARCH FOR KEYWORDS
Type an industry keyword into Google to begin your search for competitor information to
analyze. Our example is “lawyer denver.”
STEP 2. USE OPEN SITE EXPLORER (OSE)
From your search results, choose a site URL and copy it into Open Site Explorer (OSE). When the
OSE search results appear, click on the tab “Top Pages” to see a list of the most popular pages
on your competitor’s URL site.
You can determine a page’s popularity by looking at how many people linked to it, shared it on
Facebook or Tweeted about it. For our example, 1800 people linked to one page on the website
while 992 linked to another, showing that both these pages are very popular.
You might discover that your competition has a site full of very popular pages, which can be a
great source of content ideas.
STEP 3. ANALYZE YOUR INFORMATION
You can click on any page for more information, but let’s look at the one with 992 links. What is
it about this page that made 992 want to click on it/link to it/know more about it?
It turns out that this page is a fantastic resource for information on legal cases and codes.
There’s a lot of information on just this one page, making it a valuable resource for someone in
the legal arena.
Although the information on this page is broad, you can still use it to develop your own specific
content ideas. Perhaps you’re a lawyer in a different area of the country or practice in a specific
niche such as real estate law. You could build a page on cases and codes for California or cases
and codes for real estate law. While you might not get 992 links, it would still be popular
content to the people in your specific area or niche.
Another site might show you a popular blog page that you can use to create content ideas.
Creativity is the key.
To dig even deeper for information, click on the tab in OSE titled “Linking Root Domains.” You
see the names and URL of the actual sites that linked to your competitor’s page. So in our
example, there would be about 992 pages. Click on a URL to see the linking site and perhaps
uncover why they clicked on your competitor’s page.
If your competition’s site is about free holiday cab rides, maybe you, too, could create a
promotion or guide on some topic in your niche that will get other sites to link to you.
Remember, you don’t always need to hit a home run with your content. Publishing consistent,
relevant content will generate interest in your site. Sometimes getting ten people to link to you
can be worthwhile–and it may then mushroom into more. You can repeat these steps over and
over again for any of the sites that ranked number one in your Google search.
TIP #1: STAY ORGANIZED
There are two excellent documents that can help you organize your content ideas: a Content
Inventory Document and an Online PR Template. Our website has full tutorials on how to most
effectively use these documents, but we’ll discuss them briefly here.
- A site like the free holiday cab ride might be a great example to refer to when you’re ready to create a similar kind of promotion. You would add this site URL to your Content Inventory Document so it’s readily available for you or your content writer.
- The Online PR Template helps you keep track of PR content you find that sparks subject ideas. Using the holiday cab ride example, place the URLs of sites linking to that promotion into our Online PR Template as an example of who might be interested in your promotion when you actually create it.
With this information saved, you can reach out to the same people who linked to your
competitor’s promotion. So as well as finding the top pages, you’re setting yourself up to have
the same success as your competition by using the same approach.
The tips below offer additional information on recreating your competitors’ sites and reaching
out to anyone who liked to those sites to tell them about your newly created content. See our
website for tutorials that offer in-depth information on this process.
TIP #2: HOW EASY IS IT TO DUPLICATE?
Before doing all the work, determine if your competitor’s site is actually worth duplicating.
TIP #3: PLAN TO BUILD IT
Once you decide to rebuild the page, add it to your Convent Inventory Document in the
TIP #4: WHAT IS THE ESTIMATED VALUE
How valuable would it be if websites that linked to your competition also linked to your new
TIP #5: REACH OUT TO WEBSITES
Here’s an example of how to reach out to the websites that linked to your competitor’s page
and ask if they will now link to you.
To successfully develop winning content ideas from your competitors’ top web pages, follow
- Find your competitors’ websites by performing a Google search on a keyword within your industry.
- Use Open Site Explorer (OSE) to find the most popular pages within each website.
- Analyze those pages to determine why they are popular, and then build similar pages.
- Reach out to the websites that linked to your competitors’ content and ask them to now link to yours.
Today, there’s fierce competition in every business market. Analyzing the success of your
competitions’ websites to build your own popular content can move you ahead of your rivals
and consistently land you at the top of your industry’s rankings.