how-to-spy-on-your-competitors-pay-per-click-campaignYour mission – should you choose to accept it – is to outperfom your competitors.

Whether you choose to call it a “marketplace analysis” or good old fashioned spying, the fact is that your competitors are a valuable source of actionable intelligence that your business can use to define and refine your Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaigns.

Of course, the kind of spying we’re talking about here isn’t exactly the James Bond variety – so there’s nothing clandestine or secretive about it. In fact, as we’ll highlight in a moment, there are software solutions – like SpuFu, SEMRush, WordStream and others — that are designed specifically to help businesses peek behind the curtain and see what their competitors are up to.

But first, let’s highlight what you’ll want to discover and determine as part of your spying operations:

Your Top Competitors

Many businesses are surprised to discover that the foes they’ve been battling (and cursing!) for years aren’t, in fact, their top competitors. Rather, another organization – possibly one in another city, state, or even country – is their biggest threat to stealing their current and future customers.

Spying on your competitors’ PPC campaigns starts with, basically, identifying who and where they are. Otherwise, you may be aiming for the wrong targets; and leaving your business exposed to a sneak attack.

Your Competitors’ PPC Effectiveness & Readiness

Consider these two eye-opening revelations:

1. Google makes well over $100 million in revenue per day from its PPC offering known as Google AdWords.

2. The vast majority of businesses using AdWords – including many big ones – are doing a really lousy job with their ads, landing pages, keyword selections, and so on.

The insight here is that you shouldn’t assume that just because your top competitors are using PPC (e.g. AdWords, though possibly Bing and Yahoo as well), that they’re doing a good job – because they probably aren’t. And that means you have a golden opportunity to run tighter, better and more focused campaigns that achieve better results at lower costs. 

Your Competitors’ Value Propositions and Buyer Personas

Who are your competitors selling to and how are they getting their message across? Even if they’re doing a bad job, it’s often very insightful to analyze the mechanics of their PPC campaigns.

For example, by spying on your competitors’ PPC campaigns, you may discover that they’re targeting a certain segment (i.e. buyer persona) that you also covet but haven’t built a specific campaign to attract and engage. Or, your competition may be highlighting a pain point that you know is important, but is not clearly highlighted in your ads, as well as your other marketing and sales content.

Tools to Help Spy on Your Competitors’ Pay Per Click Campaigns

As noted above, there are several tools that are designed to help you spy on your competitors’ Pay Per Click campaign, as well as other aspects of their business (SEO, traffic sources, meta tags, etc.)

Some popular tools include:

  • SpyFu  
  • SEMRush  
  • Wordstream
  • Keyword Spy  
  • comScore
  • Wordtracker
  • Google Adwords Keyword Tool*
  • Microsoft Desktop Tool*
  • Rapid Keyword
  • Keyword Competitor  
  • iSpionage
  • AdGooroo  
  • Hitwise  

Note that the tools marked with a * are free, while the rest are fee-based.  

The Bottom Line

Spying on your competitors’ Pay Per Click campaigns is a shrewd and smart way to adopt what they’re doing right and exploit what they’re doing wrong – and trust us – they’re probably doing a lot wrong!

To learn more, contact Leap Clixx today. We’ll conduct a comprehensive analysis of your competition and provide you with a customized game plan that’s designed to put you on top – and keep you there!

Also, you can learn more about SEO for your inbound marketing in our free eBook!