Benchmark Against Your Competitors

An important part of a successful digital strategy is competitive benchmarking. Benchmarking can help you uncover blindspots and discover opportunities , and gives visibility into how your overall strategy is performing.

What is benchmarking and why does it matter?

Benchmarking is the process of measuring key metrics by comparing them to a point of reference - such as an industry average, an immediate competitor set, or best-in-class competitors. Who and what you benchmark against varies based on your business objectives.

Do you want to gauge your website's traffic and reach against bet-in-class competitors? Find how your site ranks in specific geographic regions or industry markets? Or, measure search and channel traffic against your immediate competior set?

Whatever it is, Similarweb has the benchmarking tools you need to understand your position, and discover growth opportunities.

In this article, you'll learn the fundamentals of digital benchmarking.

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View website ranking at a glance

A good place to start benchmarking is to get a sense of how your site ranks against the competition.

Similarweb calculates website rankings based on criteria -- including monthly unique visits and page views -- that captures a site's position among engaged audiences. In other words, ranking is based on quality traffic not just quantity.

Want to know how your website ranks globally, by country, and by category? Let's see.

  1. In the Competitive Analysis module, enter your website domain in the search bar.

  2. On the Website Performance page click +Compare to add up to four competitor sites. Use the TimeGeography , and Traffic Type (desktop or mobile) filters to refine your analysis.

The Website Performance page provides birds-eye-view of the performance of the analyzed sites. The Global, Country and Industry Rankings iare key insights used for benchmarking.

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How does the primary website stack up against the competition? How does online traffic and engagement rank within one country compared to the worldwide rank?

Key Insights: Look at the website's overall rank and rank position among the competitive set. Hover your cursor over a domain to see a description of the company and their total visits from last month.

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Tip: Sometimes industry categories are broader than you need, or do not include a company you want to include in your competitive set. To create your own custom category, use the Web Industry Analysis toolkit within the Digital Research Solution.

Give it a try! See how your site ranks and get started with benchmarking .

Compare traffic trends and channel distribution

Now, let's take a look at the distribution of traffic by marketing channel.

What marketing channel is driving the most traffic across the competitive landscape? How does my channel traffic compare to the competition?

  1. In the Competitive Analysis module, enter your website domain in the search bar.

    Click +Compare to add up to four competitor sites. Use the TimeGeography , and Traffic Type (desktop or mobile) filters to refine your analysis.

  2. Navigate to the Marketing Channels page.

The Channel overview provides insights on the traffic distribution by channel. Use the Benchmark filter to compare the analyzed websites against any industry's average channel traffic

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Key Insights: Compare how the competitive group stacks up against each other by channel and hover your cursor over the bar graphs to view the percentage (or number) breakdown of online traffic for each site

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Tip: For analyses with a timeframe under three months, take a look at Marketing Channel Trends. These automated insight cards highlight new channels, traffic jumps, and traffic drops for you.

Get a baseline for online engagement

Next up is traffic quality. Traffic quality can be measured by looking at how engaged visitors are on your website. Uncover engagement insights across your competitive set and identify areas of opportunity for your business.

  1. In the Competitive Analysis module, navigate tot he Website Performance page.

  2. Click +Compare to add up to four competitor sites, and use the TimeGeography , and Traffic Type (desktop or mobile) filters to refine your analysis.

Engagement metrics to get an understanding of traffic quality. Engagement insights are a key indicators of how well a site will performing beyond sheer traffic volume.

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Are your visitors returning to your site, are they spending time and visiting multiple pages, or are they bouncing after just one visit?

Key Insights: When analyzing this data, think through points of correlation. Compare Visit Duration to Pages per Visit to Bounce Rate. Consider the drivers of engagement and how your company can improve based on the benchmark averages of the competitive

Now that you know your benchmarks, want to increase engagement? For more on how to build a content marketing strategy that converts more customers, check out this article on the Similarweb blog.

Give it a try! How engaged are your customers? How does you're traffic engagement compare to the competitive set?

Gauge keyword performance

Let's take a look at search traffic. Search traffic is the traffic that gets to your site through a search engine. Benchmarking search traffic can help you uncover unique opportunities that you may be missing out on.

What is the share of organic vs. paid search traffic across your competitive set? How are your keywords performing relative to competitors?

Let's find out.

  1. Benchmark your search traffic share

    In the Competitive Analysis module, navigate to the Search > Overview page. Click +Compare to add up to four competitor sites.

    See the share of search traffic among the competitive set, and the distribution of the organic vs. paid search. And pay attention to the % of Branded traffic as it could be an indicator of brand recognition.

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    Which company has the largest share of traffic? How does that relate to the share of paid traffic and/or branded traffic?

  2. Discover traffic drivers

    Once you have a sense of search traffic share, take a look at the drivers of that traffic: keywords.

    1. Scroll down the Overview page, to Find New Keywords.

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      Key Insights:

      • Read the populated Insight Cards on competitive keywords, branding keywords, and high-traffic keywords. How many keywords you are missing compared to your competitors.

      • View Highly Competitive Keywords. Which keywords is the competitive set are competing for?

    2. Click FInd Keywords to access the Keyword Gap tool. Here you can explore information on All Keywords, Core Keywords Keyword Winds, and keyword Recommendations.

    3. Under Recommendations, select Opportunities to view a list of keywords sending traffic to competitors but not to your website.

      Analyze the data that corresponds with the Search Terms. Ask yourself questions like: Which keywords are driving the most traffic? Where are they leading to? What do they say about user interests?

    Give it a try! Benchmark your keyword performance and discover new opportunities!

To learn more about benchmarking your performance against competitors, check out our blog The Why and How of Competitive Benchmarking .

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