Why Are Your Customers Hanging Out At Your Competitors Web Site?

The answer to this … lies in the … … You must first do your market … you spend your first penny on … or you willlose your … one in any

The answer to this questions lies in the Marketing 101
textbooks…… You must first do your market research
before you spend your first penny on advertising or you will
lose your shirt.

Step one in any business plan must include market research,
for without it,Why Are Your Customers Hanging Out At Your Competitors Web Site? Articles your business will fail. Too many start up
Internet businesses have jumped online without the benefit
of the advantages they would gain as a result of doing
market research.

2 Essential Elements of Your Market Research Must Include:

*Knowing who your customer is…this will help you to target your
advertising message.

*Knowing who your competitors are….this will help you to obtain
a larger market share.

Internet Marketers have a great advantage over brick &
mortar businesses, in that they can easily access the
information they need for market research through the
search engines.

Keywords and keyword phrases entered into your Internet
browser will bring onto your desktop every piece of
information you will need to market your product and service
effectively on the Internet and gain a larger market share.

Here’s the steps to “market researching” your customers and

Step 1…. Define Your Customer’s Profile

Do not make the assumption that your target audience is
larger than it really is, this will cost you sales…
because you will attract visitors who are not buyers.

Tailor your customers profile to fit your ideal buyers,
not “tire kickers” and “freebie addicts”(if freebies
are geared towards your product, that’s okay).

Create a thumbnail sketch for each segment of your
target audience. There is probably more than one type
of customer for your product or service, don’t leave any
one out.

Make a list of what your customers want, what they
need, what they can afford to buy, what their sense
of urgency is, and what their concerns are.

Write a benefit that your product or service offers for
each item on this list.

Now you have the ammunition you need for the next step.

Step 2…. Choose Keywords and Keyword phrases

Make a list of all the keyword and keyword phrases that
your customers would use if they wanted to find your
product or service on the Internet.

With the help of the Goto.com keyword suggestion list and
JimTools’ Keyword Research Tool, you can come up with
100’s of keywords you may not have thought of otherwise.

Take your time with this. Put yourself in the shoes of
your customer… the longer your list of keywords, and
keyword phrases, the greater your chances of gaining a
larger market share.

Enter your keywords and keyword phrases into the major
search engines, and bookmark all the web sites that turn
up as a result of your searches. Now you know who all
your competitors are, and where your customers are
hanging out.

Step 3… Analyse your Competition

Naturally it makes sense to take a closer look at the
web sites you bookmarked that have ranked the highest
in the search engines, as they will be your biggest
competitors. For example, the web sites ranked in the top
10-30 in any of the search engines are more than likely
drawing larger market shares.

Determine why…..

Take a look at each web sites meta tags in the view
source function in your browser. You can view the source
code of any open web site in your browser by selecting
“Source” in the “View” function of Internet Explorer or
“Page Source” in the “View” function of Netscape.

Examine the keywords, description, and title that your
competitor is using in their meta tags and see how your
own meta tags compare (you do use meta tags don’t you??).

Do you need to fine tune your meta tags in order to
increase your chances of ranking higher with the
search engines, then do so. This activity alone will
bring your more targeted traffic.

How does your web sites sales copy compare to your
competitors. Chances are that your larger competitors are
using benefit rich sales copy. Fine tune your web site
sales copy to address how your product or service will be
about helping your customer get what they want and need.

How about the design of your competitors web site? You
can learn more about what is more attractive and
compelling to your customer by comparing your web design
to that of your competitors. For example… is your web
site easy to navigate? Do you have a consistent focus on
one or two products/services? Do you have a web site
that is cluttered with gyrating banners for unrelated

Does your competitors web site offer more online payment
options than you do? Are they easier to use? Do they
send an automatic thank you with each order?

What about customer service? Does your competitor follow
up with their customers to determine their level of
satisfaction? Do they offer real time online customer

What about price? Where is your pricing compared to your

How about added value? Does your competitor offer more to
the customer with the purchase of their product/service?
For example, a guarantee, a bonus, or a trial version.

How much advertising does your competitor do and where?
To find this out, simply search the Internet using your
competitors web site name, or product name to find out
where else they are linked to.

***Keep in mind the above suggestions do not suggest or
encourage copying any web site, web site copy, or HTML code
from your competitor’s web site. There are copyright laws
that protect us all from this kind of activity. You can use
the information obtained from your Internet searches for
ideas on how to improve your own web site only.

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