How to Check How Much Traffic a Website Gets

website traffic

Website traffic refers to the number of people who visit a website at one time. The term “sessions” is used to describe traffic. One session is when a user views one or more pages in a specified period. Some visitors may return to your site for multiple sessions before purchasing a product or asking about a service.

You can use competitor websites to help you make improvements. It doesn’t matter if your website’s purpose is to generate leads, sales, or brand awareness. Understanding where your target audience spends time online and what attracts them to convert is crucial. Business owners can get valuable insights into the market by comparing their websites to other websites. This will allow them to identify potential growth opportunities and help them develop and grow.

Your ongoing marketing strategy should include competitor analysis. It will help you determine if your website is in line with industry standards, and where you can excel over competitors. Are your bounce rates higher than those of similar websites? Change or reposition your call-to-action (CTAs). Are competitors producing low-quality, infrequent content? Your blog should be the first-choice guide for industry professionals looking for information and thought leadership. It is crucial to monitor how much traffic your competitor’s websites receive.

This guide will cover:

  • How to check your competitors’ website traffic
  • How to check a competitor’s traffic using free tools
  • How to check a competitor’s traffic using paid tools

How to check your competitors’ website traffic

Step 1. Identify Your Competitors

If you are a contractor or a local business owner, you may have an idea about your competition. Google can be a great place to look for online competitors. You may also find competitors who are located in your area but have the same product or service. A search for your product or service will produce a list of competitors who are targeting the same audience.

If you have a particular location, such as Hackney dentists, don’t forget the location. To avoid having your search history skew results, Google offers an “incognito” mode. You may need to narrow down your search results if you are a service-based business or website development company that targets people across the country or the world. This will prevent you from being overwhelmed by too many competitors and also give you more valuable insights into the research of your competitors.

After you have exhausted Google search, start exploring the most popular social networks in your industry. Facebook and Instagram are likely to be top priorities if you sell products, but service-based or B2B businesses will get more from LinkedIn and Twitter. To identify potential competitors, search key terms, trends, news stories, and any industry hashtags.

Many tools are available for free or paid that help companies identify their competitors. These tools can be particularly useful in identifying start-ups, which may not be on the radar of your business but could scale up or do something new that could be a game changer in your industry. You can find information below about how to use paid and free tools to monitor competitors’ traffic.

Step 2. Categorize Your Competitors

A Google search for a specific industry niche will likely return many potential competitors. You can make competitor analysis more manageable by categorizing any businesses that are identified in terms of the competition they represent. Is it a direct competitor offering a similar product to yours and targeting the same target audience, or does their offer have only one or two products that overlap with yours and a different target audience? These small businesses may have a small marketing budget, or are they industry giants with millions-dollar marketing campaigns?

You can categorize your competitors to help you prioritize your research time. This will help you understand your results and allow you to gain valuable insights. It will also help you set realistic goals to surpass them.

Step 3. Examine Competitor Websites

To gauge the performance of competitor websites, take a look at them and come up with some ideas. It is important to start reviewing competitors’ websites to see why they are getting more traffic. However, that is not all that matters. It’s not important how much traffic a website receives. What it does with that traffic is just as important. Knowing the conversion elements of a website’s site will enable you to cross-reference these with your own to find those that are successful and to implement them.

Let’s put it this way: Converting 10% of 100 visitors will net you the same results, but you have to do less work to get traffic to your website. Imagine maintaining the same conversion rate while scaling your traffic. It soon becomes obvious that analyzing your competitors’ websites can help you to improve your business.

What should you be looking for when evaluating your competitors? Consider how well their homepage looks. What first impressions do they give you? It’s the first page visitors to their site will see. So it’s crucial to assess how easy it is for them to navigate and find the information they need. Is the site easy to navigate and load quickly? You should also look at the location of their calls to action and the language they use.

Is there a clear CTA that is above the fold (the area where a user must scroll down) and is the messaging compelling (“Show me How to Increase Engagement in My Company”) or generic (“Subscribe To Newsletter”)? You should also look at the other pages of the site. Do they have plenty of information and images that show what their customers will get? Do they highlight any objections visitors might have and address them effectively on their website? Or do they just gloss over them (or ignore them altogether)? Is there any room for doubt?

Step 4. Monitor Social Media Accounts of Competitors

Smart Insight’s Global Digital Report 2019 estimates that there are now 3.5 billion users of social media worldwide. This is an increase of 9% over the previous year. Businesses are increasingly using social media platforms in their digital marketing strategies, it is not surprising.

It is completely free to monitor the social media accounts of competitors for evaluation purposes. Examine the presence of your competitors on social media. Are they spreading their efforts equally, or focusing on a few platforms? What kind of content do they post and how are brand mentions used? Are they active on social media? Do they have high engagement and a large number of followers? Does curated content or promotional material get the most likes and shares? To plan your social media strategy, you can use your analysis of the performance of your competitors.

Are visual and text content getting more likes than visual? This will reveal the needs of your target audience. You can go one step further — are video posts creating buzz and sparking conversation, while infographics are largely ignored? Businesses drive a large percentage of their website traffic via social media. Understanding what your audience is engaging with is the first step in gaining a share of that traffic.

Step 5. Analyze the Web Traffic of Competitors

It is possible to review websites and social media platforms to get a better idea of the traffic coming from competitors. However, data and statistics are necessary to complete this picture.

Numerous free tools are available to provide information on competitor websites. This includes the number of visitors, top-ranking keywords, and what is driving traffic. This information can be combined with the research that you have done in steps 1 through 4, to help you evaluate what is working in your industry and explain why.

How to check a competitor’s traffic using free tools

You can find many free tools to track the traffic of your competitors. New tools are constantly being developed. There are many things you can take into account when analyzing the performance of a competitor due to the search’s increasing sophistication and importance. Every tool is different so it’s important to use a variety of tools to compare results. You won’t be able to see the traffic source of a competitor’s website, but you can use the estimates from several tools to get enough information to make informed decisions. Some tools are limited in their usage or have limitations on how many searches you can do. Others offer basic features that limit your usage, while the paid version has unlimited access.

SimilarWeb

SimilarWeb allows users to run reports about any URL. It allows you to enter the name of any competitor and it will search its vast data sources to return information like its average number and duration of visits (how long visitors spend on the site), bounce rates (how many users leave the site without taking action) and much more. This tool will provide insights into the online strategies of competitors and help you understand your customer journey.

These metrics show that visitors are finding value in the site and that it is meeting their needs. You can use the information you gained in step three to determine why, and then consider how to implement similar elements on your site to improve performance.

The report includes a list of similar sites. This is one of the best parts of this tool. This helps businesses find competitors who may be able to fill a niche that they didn’t know existed during competitor research.

Moz

Moz is a well-known name in online marketing and SEO. It offers free SEO tools to help you keep track of your competitors’ traffic.

The Keyword Explorer tool can help you identify the best-performing content for your target keywords. This tool can be used to help you identify your competitors and highlight ways to outperform them through higher-quality content. Keyword performance can be a great indicator of a competitor’s market position.

Moz’s Link Explorer tool allows you to enter the URL of a competitor and view a report that includes their backlinks, top keywords, and a list of other websites with similar terms. These reports can be used to get a better understanding of competitors’ online marketing strategies and traffic sources.

Google Keyword Planner

Google Keyword Planner lets users monitor the performance of their website for specific keywords. It is also useful for competitor analysis. All Google account holders can use it for free. Signing in for the first Google account will generate multiple invitations to create a Google Ads campaign. However, this is not required.

To get hundreds of keyword suggestions based on their online activity, enter the URL of a competitor. This will give you a great insight into the strategy of your competitor and can help you to generate new ideas for your own business.

Paid Tools: How to check a competitor’s traffic

Paid tools offer more detailed and high-level data than free ones. They also have more advanced features. The monthly usage caps are also more generous. This means that you won’t run out of search credits halfway through the month and you can plan to find what you want to search for to avoid exceeding the daily limit. While some tools require a paid subscription to access, others offer a free trial or tiered payment system that allows businesses to test before they purchase and select the package that suits their budget and needs.

Alexa

Although some information can be accessed with a free account for some purposes, most rich data from Amazon’s Alexa are only available to paid accounts. This tool is primarily designed for web traffic analytics. It holds data from over 30 million websites.

To obtain a report containing the competitor’s “Alexa Rank”, a measurement of site popularity based on monthly traffic, enter the URL in the search bar. Reports include information such as traffic sources, keyword usage, website comparisons, and more.

Alexa allows businesses to benchmark their performance against other companies and uncover ideas to improve performance.

Ahrefs

Ahrefs, one of the most popular and highly-reviewed paid tools to analyze competitor analysis and SEO, is Ahrefs. It offers many features, including competitive analysis which allows you to compare up to five domains simultaneously and see a complete picture of their backlink profiles as well as growth over time.

The Organic Research Report tool can be used to determine which keywords are being ranked in organic search results. Ahrefs also displays the keyword volume and percentage of traffic to a website via the search. The Content Gap tool can be used to identify keywords that a competitor is ranking well for but you are not. These tools together provide invaluable data to help you plan your marketing strategy and target the most profitable and competitive keywords in your industry.

SEMrush

Its Traffic Analytics tool displays the source and level of visitors to a website. The Domain Overview gives you a comprehensive report on any URL. It includes all of the information you need about a competitor including backlinks and display ads. Pay attention to their paid keywords. These are keywords your competitors pay to rank for. This indicates that there is search intent and they are commercially viable keywords.  The Domain Overview gives you a quick overview of the strengths and flaws of a site.

The software’s many features make it worthy of a blog post. Brand Monitoring, which searches the internet for organic mentions from your competitor brand; Social Media Tracker, which monitors Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms for them; and Brand Monitoring, which scans the internet looking for mentions of that competitor’s brand (unlike Google Alerts which will only show you historical data), and Post Tracking which allows you compare your content to the performance of a competitor. 

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