3 minute read

Finding competitor keywords is a clever way to take your keyword research, and your site’s traffic, to new heights.

Discovering the keywords your competitors target can:

  • Give you a glimpse into what is working for them
  • Reveal new keywords you might not have thought of
  • Uncover opportunities for you to create new content and boost your search engine rankings

Ultimately, when you find competitor keywords, you can find ideas for your SEO you might not have considered yet, and use those ideas to drive new traffic to your site.

How can I find competitor keywords?

You can use Alexa’s Competitive Analysis Tools to find competitor keywords that your rivals are capturing traffic for in both organic and paid search.

Here’s a five step workflow you can follow to identify competitor keywords and find opportunities for your own site in minutes with a free trial of the Alexa Advanced plan.

  1. Navigate to the Competitor Keyword Matrix
  2. See the Share of Voice for your competitors list
  3. Scroll down to the keyword matrix—here you’ll see the keywords driving traffic for all the sites in your list
  4. Compare the organic and paid traffic scores for individual sites for each keyword
  5. Use the keyword gaps filter to find opportunities for your own site

Continue on for a closer look at how to perform this analysis.

1. Navigate to the Competitor Keyword Matrix. You’ll find it under “SEO Tools” in the left side menu. Enter the name of your site along with your top competitors in organic or paid search. You can add up to 10 sites to compare at a time, and once you have done so, hit “Create Matrix.”  We’ll use starbucks.com as well as some of their competitors as an example.

Competitor keyword matrix input sites

2. See the Share of Voice for the sites in your list. First we’ll see an overview of the organic and paid keyword share of voice for the sites in our list. This share of voice calculation takes into account all of the keywords receiving traffic to these sites, the popularity of those individual keywords, and the relative amount of traffic a site receives for the keyword.

Share of voice

3. Scroll down to the keyword matrix. Here we find individual keywords that some or all of the sites on our list bring in traffic for in organic search or paid search. The keywords are sorted by descending Average Traffic Score; in other words, the keywords that drive the most traffic on average to the sites in the set are shown first.

4. Compare the organic and paid traffic scores for individual sites. If you entered in more than a couple sites, scroll to the right to see the traffic scores, or the relative amount of traffic driven from each keyword to each site. You can use the toggle at the top to see organic, paid, or both traffic scores.

Use the toggle

5. Use the filters to surface high-value keywords. Filters can help you identify popular search queries, queries with or without a specific term, and even low-competition keywords. Use the “Use Case” filters to find long tail keywords, buyer keywords, or the top industry terms.

Filters

6. Use the keyword gaps filter to find opportunities. Use the “keyword gaps” filter to find keyword opportunities that your competitors are driving traffic for, but you aren’t. Again, you can look use this filter to assist in your paid or organic search efforts.

 

What should I do with the keywords I find?

Focus on a couple of the opportunities you have identified. Create quality content or a targeted landing page that answers your customers’ questions or addresses a need. Effective content attracts more traffic to your site and earns you more inbound links. As result, your authority improves and your ranking in search engines increase.

You might also decide to run a PPC campaign for a promising long-tail keyword with lower competition at a lower cost.

Bottom Line

When you find competitor keywords you get insight into what has been successful for others. You also uncover new ideas to enhance your strategy and potentially reach a wider audience.

Ready to find your competitor’s keywords?

Keyword Research is available as a part of Alexa Insight and Advanced subscriptions. Sign up for a free trial of the Advanced Plan to discover new keywords today!

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