How does it feel to see your competitors’ websites ranked higher than yours in Google search results?
Not so great, right?
All businesses want to attract more customers. To do so, we frequently compare ourselves with our competitors, who can seem like they’re everywhere in Google Search.
Can you do something about your competitors’ higher rankings — or will you always be #2?
Google rewards websites that users find relevant and authoritative. So you need to improve your website’s relevancy and authority to outrank your competitors in Google Search.
The best way to defeat your competitors is to look at their work and learn from them. However, it can be challenging to see what they’re doing. How do you start your search? Does it work for both old and new sites? How can you do a competitor analysis most efficiently?
How you can outrank your competitors on Google, regardless of their size and bank account
These 5 actionable and repeatable tactics will help you outrank your competitors by using their strategies against them:
1. Analyze keywords from competitors
Google has already shown other companies ranking for products or services similar to yours. So why not take a look at what keywords they rank for?
A third-party keyword analysis tool can help you to plan your keywords. For example, you can use SEMRush or Ahrefs to discover the keywords that your competitors are using. With their assistance, you can refine your keyword research.
- In a spreadsheet, make a list of all your competitors. Include their homepages and main websites.
- Then view their source code and look at the title, metadata, and headings. Doing so enables you to quickly identify your largest rivals’ keywords to drive traffic to their landing pages and websites.
- Add them to your spreadsheet.
Your marketing and on-page SEO team can now customize your pages and content around these keywords with this info in hand.
2. Write informative, high-quality content
One of the most important things you can do to outrank your competitors on Google is to create fantastic content that your customers and future customers will love to read.
To better understand people’s needs, look at what is ranking highly on Google and other social media. Then, focus on creating content that fulfills users’ search intention — content that helps users achieve what they were looking for when they entered the query into Google search.
Make sure you provide helpful information in your content and answer all questions. You can easily find topics you’d like to talk about using Google’s “People Also Ask” boxes or related keywords.
3. Master on-page SEO
Another important aspect of ranking on Google is on-page SEO — optimizing the elements on your website that impact search engine results:
- Title tags must identify the page’s topic and include keywords.
- Each page’s meta description should describe what it is about. Search engine result pages (SERPs) include meta descriptions, so they are vital to ranking higher. Write them yourself unless you want Google to write them for you.
- Headings divide your content into sections and include keywords that help Google understand what’s on your page.
- URLs must be easy to read and concise. If possible, they should contain your keywords.
- Include alt tags that identify your images’ contents in a few words — Google uses this info when it generates SERPs (search engine results pages).
- Page loading speed is a central factor Google considers when ranking websites and users expect pages to load quickly as well.
- Internal linking between pages on your website provides users with a direct route to the information they require. Be mindful of broken links and redirect them as necessary.
You can only improve your organic rankings only so far by using an on-page SEO approach.
Backlinking goes a step further and is one of the best strategies to help you rank higher than your competitors on Google.
Use a tool like the Ahrefs Backlink Checker to see how many backlinks your competitors have to the page that is ranking higher than yours, and you will get an idea of how many backlinks you will need.
It is not easy to build backlinks. However, Google will reward backlinks from websites with high domain authority. Therefore, prioritizing quality over quantity is essential.
To help acquire and retain quality connections, you should create excellent inbound marketing materials such as infographics, blog posts, videos and use content marketing initiatives to obtain the highest number of backlinks.
Keep an eye out for opportunities to create links on other websites. There are many software tools and CRMs that can help you with SEO and SEM.
5. Speed up your website
Your SEO rankings are affected by page speed in the same manner as your PPC campaigns.
Do your competitors outrank you in search terms for keywords for which you have the same amount of backlinks and domain authority? If this is the case, you should look at how fast your desktop and mobile pages load.
Your slower loading speed could be due to text compression, server response time, uncompressed images, and many other causes.
Use Google PageSpeed Insights to check your website’s speed and determine what is slowing it down. In addition, GTMetrix can test and monitor your page’s performance and offer actionable recommendations on how to optimize it.