Magic Online Business Tool to Give You the Competitive Edge

Every successful online business owner knows who her competition is and what he or she is up to. She implements their strategy and safeguards herself from making the same mistakes they do. That’s why it’s so important for you to know exactly what your competition is doing and how they are obtaining clients – particularly if they have the bulk of the market share.

The Internet offers you a range of excellent online business tools to keep abreast of your competition – so there’s no excuse to not monitor your competitors.

I can hear you exclaim as you read this… “What? Why would I want to spy on my competition?”

Bear with me for just a moment while I explain…

Knowing exactly what makes your competition ticks, how they operate and why they do it not only shows you what works for them, but also what doesn’t work in your industry. It might even give you a few great ideas on ways to improve your own business.

online business

Today I’m going to give you the 5 easiest ways to spy on the competition:

online businessSocial media is a great place to get to know people. The good news is that they won’t think you’re weird if you request them as friends on Facebook, because they too want to see what you’re up to. Use social media platforms and their personal blogs to learn what they are like as people, what makes them tick and who they are – their hobbies, their families. (No, I’m not saying you should stalk them! Just respectfully observe and research – you know? – from a distance.)

 

online businessThe internet is huge and a lot of people say a lot of things every minute of every day. Tools like TweetBeep or TweetDeck will notify you if someone mentions you or your competition. Use these online business tools to fine-tune your efforts or to take advantage of news about your competition.

You can also use Google Alerts to let you know whenever your competition is mentioned online. Find out about the events they are attending and what their customers love about them.

online businessBy looking through the photos your competition and their employees post on social media, you can learn about their goals, company culture, and so much more.

What are the events they go to? How do they treat their customers and what kind of customer experience do they create? What do their products and services look like?

 

I know what you are thinking – that I have finally lost it completely. Why would you support the competition?online business

Here’s why. Many companies test new developments, features and product launches on their sites before they launch it to the public and the press.

If you have an account set up on your competitors’ sites, you have a front row seat to their future plans, which can help you shape your own strategies to stay on the cutting-edge.

online businessThere’s an old adage that goes something like “Do what the successful people do”, but that’s not all I meant when I said you should follow your competition. I meant that you should follow their blogs and sign up for their newsletters. You need to be the first person to read it.

Online businesses usually blog about hires, launches, partnerships and other important things that can help you fine-tune your own business. Seeing the reactions of their followers will also give you an idea of how you can gain the competitive edge as far as customer satisfaction and care are concerned.

Now remember that monitoring your competition alone is not the objective. You need to act on what you learn and implement it in your own business – otherwise you’re just a cyber-stalker and we don’t want that, do we?

This may seem quite unconventional advise, but one thing to consider is the complementary areas between you and competitors. For example, with my business, I was passionate about launching a fund to help women grow their online business and instead of doing it by myself. I realized the co-founder of Secret {W} Business, Agent Grace was passionate about the same thing and we are now launching Women 4 Women which is a collaboration from both organizations.

Do you have any other great ideas on how we can analyze the competition? Please share your online business tips in comments below.

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