Competitive analysis is an important part of a startup marketing plan. Whether you are a small business owner or launching a startup business, you must do a competitive analysis to keep an eye on your business rivals.
With this analysis, you can make your products & services unique in the market. You can also get an idea of how your competitors are running their business operations or what type of marketing strategies they are using to target the customers.
Through the detailed competitor analysis, you can also save your business future by developing innovative and unique strategies to target the market effectively.
There are some important points that should be remembered while writing a competitive analysis report. You must,
- Be objective
- Conduct detailed research and do analysis
- Write a report in a proper format
Without further ado, let’s talk about on How to write a perfect competitive analysis report?
Well, there are five key topics that must be covered in the competitive analysis report. These topics are as follow:
- List of business rivals / competitors
- Competitors’ product details
- Weakness and Strengths of Competitors
- Identification of strategies used by the competitors
- The overall market situation
Okay, so let’s discuss these key topics in detail.
5 Steps to Writing a Competitive Analysis Report
1. List of Business Rivals / Competitors
The analysis starts with building a list of business competitors. You will need to visit the market where you’re planning to a business.
Search and identify the companies which are dealing in the same commodities. Write down the competitors’ information including their names, products and services, and also business locations.
When you are done with it, now the next step is to highlight the major business competitors that may be challenging for your upcoming startup.
Related: How to Select a Good Business Location?
2. Competitors’ product details
In this section, you’ll need to explore the details of competitors’ commodities regarding quality, features, targets and values. In this step, you’ll have to answer the following questions such as
- How your competitors are selling their commodities?
- How do they market them?
- What type of strategies they are using to target customers?
- How many types of distribution and advertisement channels they are using?
- What is the level of product quality they are offering?
After that, you should conduct a market survey (questionnaire) to get an idea about customers’ satisfaction level, their needs and demands.
You should also ask your sales staff about the current market situation and get the latest information about competitors’ customers.
3. Weaknesses and Strengths of Competitors
Exploring and identifying competitors’ strengths weaknesses could be highly beneficial for your business. Identify those products which have high demand in the market.
Try to find the reasons that make them unique for customers. Apart from strengths, you also need to highlight the competitors’ weaknesses.
Once you find the competitors’ weaknesses, you really need to fill the niche. Introduce your products and services today and get an edge over market competitors.
If you are concerned about how to get competitors’ information related to strengths and weakness, then don’t worry. You can get this information in variety of ways such as
- Access competitors’ website
- Access Trade Press
- Contact consultants and journalists
- Visit market and try to interact with competitors’ employees and customers
4. Identification of strategies used by the competitors
Monitor and observe the competitors that how they are selling their products and services in the market. How they are marketing themselves.
Check what type of channels they are using such as advertisements or press releases. Grab competitors’ quarterly, semi-annually and annual reports to get a bunch of valuable information.
It is not easy to highlight and identify the competitors’ strategies. You really need to do hard work to nail your potential competitors down. You need to talk with journalists and interview with relevant stakeholders. Use different sources to get a complete picture of competitors’ business structure.
Once you get competitors’ objectives and strategies, then you need to compare with your objectives and strategies. If you find any flaw, then try to improve it.
5. The overall situation of market
It is the last and final step of competitors’ analysis. In this section, you need to answer the question such as
- Which market is best for your products and services?
- Is it growing?
- Is the market is flat?
- What is the level of competition for customers?
- Is the market splintering?
This section may look like a set of future predictions but it will be helpful for you and tell you about current and future market trends. After getting plenty of information, you will be in a position to decide about the overall market situation and what the market outlook really is.
Crafting a competitive analysis report can be a challenging, time-consuming and interesting piece of work, but it will give you lots of competitors’ information and also helpful for you to develop effective marketing strategies to grow your startup business.