Below are some useful tips for how you can spy on your competitors so you always know what they’re up to. Let’s be honest, everyone in ecommerce has at least one or two competitors that always seem to get on your nerves. These tips won’t take you more than 10 minutes so you’ve no excuse.
Sign up for this simple service which is free. Set up an alert using your competitor’s names and this will save you having to run manual searches to see if anything has been written about them. It also ensures you don’t miss a thing.
Social social social! Yes we know, everyone is on the social media bandwagon now, but that means its something you have to be a part of. It also means you can learn a lot about your competitors. If nothing else, follow their Twitter account and ‘like’ their Facebook page so that their updates show up in your feed. That way you will find out what they are promoting, what events they are attending, or even some Twitter specific offers they might be running.
You can also see how they interact with their customers, or simply gauge how much engagement they are receiving for their social media efforts.
And remember, if you see a lot of negative comments about a particular product or service that you offer yourself, you can capitalise on that.
Go to their site and add your email to their list (just remember not to use your company email address!!). You will receive their newsletters and any promotional email they might send out. This is a great way to see what marketing tactics they use, and to understand how they interact with their customers.
You didn’t think we’d write a blog post without a bit of self promotion at the end did you?
Our parent company IntelligentEye is working on an exciting new product called Brand Picture. Due for launch in October 2011, Brand Picture will allow you to easily monitor your competitors websites and get alerted when they change something. This might be them announcing some senior management changes, redesigning their website, publishing some interesting company news or even removing a whole product category from their website!
Although not launched yet, you can add yourself to the interest list by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and simply quoting ‘Brand Picture’.