Typically, spying isn’t seen as good thing…
However, when it comes to your competition, it’s worth it to scope out what moves they are making in their digital marketing campaigns.
Whether you are doing your own digital marketing or have hired an agency to run your campaigns for you, growing your building material manufacturing business involves using the latest in marketing tactics, tools, and data-driven strategies. It takes a thorough understanding of your audience, the platforms you are using, and how best to rise above your competition.
How do you do that?
While sneaking into your competitor’s office and raiding the file cabinets may come to mind, there are much more effective (and less risky) methods you can use to discover all of their digital marketing campaign secrets.
By knowing what strategies they are using, how their campaigns are performing, and what results they are bringing in, you can better level up your own digital marketing campaigns. Good news for you, bad news for the other guy.
In this post we will be covering the 7 best tools for “spying” on your competitors and how to use that data to attract even more leads to your building material manufacturing business.
7 Tools for Building Material Manufacturers to Scope Out Their Competition
It’s time to get sneaky.
If you’re a building material manufacturer and are looking to grow your business, now is the time to give your competitors a once-over.
To help you out, we have compiled a list of the best online tools you can use to spy on your competitor’s digital marketing campaigns – and make yours even better.
We have included a wide range of tools to assess everything from SEO strategy to paid ads to content marketing in order for you to be able to breakdown your competitor’s approach and improve upon your own campaigns.
Funny name, but this tool means business.
WhatRunsWhere provides business owners and advertisers with data to improve upon their online media buying.
Users of this tool are able to keep an eye on their competitors’ campaign sets, discover new traffic sources, and maximize ROI through improved advertising strategies.
WhatRunsWhere is one of the few fully comprehensive competitor intelligence platforms on the market. Their data includes that of over 120,000 publishers and advertisers, allowing an in-depth look into the most successful ad campaigns.
That is, it shows you what’s working, what’s not, and what tactics you may want to use in your own campaigns.
WhatRunsWhere prides itself on “unparalleled” comprehensive ad intelligence. That includes a focus on these primary features: Ad Analysis and Advanced Campaign Strategies.
Top Brand and Ad Analysis
Find out who’s killing it in your niche and how.
WhatRunsWhere grants you the ability to see the best ads across the web according to your niche or focus keyword. You can even organize the data by ad type, location, time frame, and more.
Use this feature to find your competition, spy on their ads, and break down what tactics they are using. You can analyze ad performance, ad copy, traffic sources, ad formats, and essentially everything you need to size up your competition.
Advanced Campaign Strategies
This tool will give you a glimpse into what’s working in your competitors’ campaigns and across the advertising landscape as a whole. From the networks used to the landing pages on site, you’ll come away with advanced strategies on how to improve your digital marketing campaigns and drive more conversions for your building material manufacturing business.
Bonus: The platform is updated daily to ensure the most up-to-date information – something few tools are able to offer.
Visit their pricing page for options.
Basic: $299 / month
Full Coverage: $399 / month
Enterprise: Contact WhatRunsWhere for custom pricing
SEMrush is a favorite of SEO pros and business owners alike. With in-depth analytics on organic traffic, backlink profile, PPC ad analysis, and more, this is one tool you don’t want to overlook.
While many users turn to SEMrush to track the data of their own sites, it is quite a robust tool when it comes to spying on the competition as well. If you a looking for that “all of the above” tool, SEMrush is a comprehensive, yet affordable option.
Using SEMrush to Spy on Your Competitors
SEMrush allows you to test out the tool for a few searches, but the data is limited unless you opt for a subscription. That being said, it’s worth giving it a trial run to get a taste of what SEMrush is all about.
If you do opt for a monthly or annual subscription, you can look forward to the full range of features that the tool has to offer.
With SEMrush, you can look at your competitors’:
- Traffic sources and analytics
- Keywords and related keywords
- Social media results
- Backlink profile
- Ad copy and strategies
- Ad budget and performance
- Rivals and competing sites
These features are just the tip of the iceberg. You can also generate robust reports, find other keyword opportunities, conduct SEO audits, and manage your own PPC ad campaigns. Further customized options allow you to track your competition and the performance of their digital marketing efforts.
Access to this data presents new opportunities for your digital marketing campaigns. Whether it’s a new content marketing project or a paid ad campaign, you will be able to tap into the strategies your competitors are using – and even better, rise above them.
For more details about pricing, visit their Prices page.
Pro: $99.95 / month
Guru: $199.95 / month
Business: $399.95 / month
Enterprise: Contact SEMrush for custom pricing
Ahrefs is neck and neck with SEMrush when it comes to SEO tools, which can be a hot topic of debate amongst SEO pros. Some experts opt for one or the other, some experts opt for both. We encourage you to try each of them out and determine which one works best for you, particularly if you are on a limited budget.
Ahrefs provides much of the same information as SEMrush, with an arguably stronger emphasis on backlinks and organic search traffic data. Ahrefs fans herald the tool as being more accurate than most other SEO tools, making it one of the most well-respected and popular tools out there.
Their slogan gets right to the point: “Helping you to learn why your competitors are ranking so high and what you need to do to outrank them” – which is exactly what you want to do.
Competition Analysis Features
Compare your site to your competitors to see how your SEO tactics are measuring up. You can see their backlink profile, search traffic, and more. These metrics can help you determine where you may need to step up your own efforts.
Site Explorer is a 3-in-1 interface that gives you insight to competitor search traffic, backlink profile, and paid traffic.
You can see what keywords they are targeting, how much traffic they are getting, where they are funneling their paid traffic, what keywords they are bidding on and more.
Content Gap Analysis
The Content Gap feature takes all of the keywords your competitors are ranking for and compares them to the keywords that your own site is ranking for. The “gaps” then show you what keywords you should be targeting.
You can even compare several sites at the same time, and generate a long list of keywords, ie new opportunities for website content or advertising.
Check out their site for more information about pricing and 7-day free trial.
Lite: $99 / month
Standard: $179 / month
Advanced: $399 / month
Agency: $999 / month
iSpionage, whose very name alludes to spying on the competition, is an easy-to-use tool that allows you to do just that.
The primary features of iSpionage is that you can see your competitors’ most profitable keywords, ad copy, and landing pages.
‘Spi’ on Your Competition
iSpionage gives you over 7 years of PPC and SEO data from Google, Bing, and Yahoo – the top 3 search engines. Their database includes over 92 million keywords and even more ad copy variations, granting you a wealth of data to conduct your competitor research.
With iSpionage you can:
- Find the top domains in your niche
- See how your competitors groups their keywords, PPC ads, and landing pages
- Uncover your rivals’ most profitable search terms – and how they are using them
- Examine your competition’s ad budget and entire PPC strategy
- Find new keyword opportunities
- Learn strategies to improve CTR and lower CPC for your own ads
Find New Opportunities, Write Better Ads
One of the greatest benefits of using this tools is that you will pick up on strategies for how to improve your own digital marketing campaigns.
Their Ad Effectiveness Index (AEI) algorithm breaks down the most effective ad copy in your niche. You will see which key terms your competitors are using and bidding on, and which landing pages are converting the best. You will also learn how to write better ads to get that higher click through rate and lower your costs.
See pricing at iSpionage. Monthly, annual, and custom Enterprise options available.
Starter: $59 / month
Professional: $99 / month
Advanced: $299 / month
SpyFu is a crowd favorite, especially for how affordable it is.
Though not quite as robust as SEMrush or Ahrefs, SpyFu is a pretty solid option. Their free search function is a good place to start to dip your toes into competitor analysis.
SpyFu on the Prowl
Use SpyFu to search any of your competitors’ domains and jump into their digital marketing strategy. You’ll see every place they are showing up in Google, every keyword they have bid on through Adwords, their rankings, and every ad they have ran in the past 12 years!
You can also see some of the online leads methods they are using — from social media to direct marketing. This can help you determine new channels for your own digital marketing campaigns – ones you may have never thought of before.
Their PPC Competitor Research tools allows you to download your rivals’ PPC keywords, keep track of every domain bidding on those terms, and find keywords that you may be missing out on. SpyFu is a great tool for finding those gaps and measuring the performance of your competitors’ ads.
With SpyFu, you can discover new keywords to target and how to generate more leads for your building material manufacturing business – without housing a “breaking and entering” scenario.
See SpyFu for pricing details. Discounts available for annual plans.
Basic: $39 / month
Professional: $78 / month
Team: $299 / month
Find out what all the buzz is about when it comes to your competitor’s content.
Buzzsumo is quite different from the SEO tools above, as it exclusively looks at content and how it is performing online.
You can search any topic, competitor, or domain to see their top-performing content, how many social shares they are getting, the strategies they are using, and more. Buzzsumo also has a range of tools related to competitor research and content planning and curation.
Level Up Your Social Media Marketing Campaigns
The Buzzsumo Content Discovery tool makes it easy to find what content is trending on the web – and which campaigns are performing the best. Through this dashboard, you can find new topic ideas, content structuring strategies, and ways to improve the CTR on your social media content.
Gain insight into what topics resonate most with your audience and what they engage with most. Those likes, comments, and shares could turn into paying customers!
You can search content by type, platform, domain, and time period. This allows you to see what content is currently killing it and which topics are on the rise. This positions you to get ahead of the curve when creating content for your own site or social media pages.
See pricing plans at Buzzsumo.
Pro: $99 / month
Plus: $179 / month
Large: $299 / month
Enterprise: $499+ / month
7. Social Blade
Coming in at lucky number 7, Social Blade is another social stats tool for spying on the effectiveness of your competitors’ social media campaigns.
Simply enter their YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, or other social media profile username and watch the magic happen. You’ll gain insight into current trends and user engagement which can be used to improve upon your own campaigns.
Grow Your Social Media Presence
Does your building materials manufacturing business have a presence on social media? If so, you will want to create and share content that encourages your fans to engage, click, and buy.
Dig into competitor data to see what’s working for their social media accounts. You’ll find strategies on how to grow your accounts, boost engagements, and improve click through on your posts and ads.
Bonus: Interested in influencer marketing? With Social Blade you can even find influencers to connect with who will promote your products and services.
Free, with Premium options available. Click here to register.