Competitor analysis is a critical part of your company’s marketing plan. It provides both an offensive and defensive strategic context to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. It is argued that most companies do not conduct competitor analysis systematically enough, relying on informal impressions and intuition, and therefore putting themselves at risk of being outdone by competitors.
There is a perception that performing competitor analysis systematically requires a lot of resources and effort from a company. So it was until recently, but now, with the development of mobile technology and paperless data collection, the situation has changed dramatically. Today every company can afford knowing its competitors by performing in-house retail competitor’s audits by virtue of a retail audit software solution.
Where to Start Competitor Analysis? Identify Your Competitors.
A first step in carrying out competitor analysis should be identifying your competitors – companies in the same or a similar industry, which offers a similar product or service. Prior to making a list of competitors, determine your market size. Your competition may vary depending on whether you scale up to local, regional, national and international markets. After you’ve defined your market geographically, make a list of all companies within its boundaries, who are engaged in similar activities as you and can attract your customers. For FMCG or CPG companies the most obvious ways of searching competitors are the following:
- Points-of-sale monitoring – Sometimes it’s enough just take a look on the store shelf with your product and find similar products.
- Internet search – Try to determine, to what sites the user gets, when looking for certain items.
- Customer survey – Ask customers what brands, within the targeted market, they know; how do they choose between different brands; which brands they buy more often.
If you company already uses a retail audit software solution, you can easily organize preliminary competitors’ research, get the retail data very quickly and create analytic reports with just a few clicks. The up-to-date retail audit software solutions allow gathering all kinds of store data, including numbers, photo-reports, customer survey, and etc. By switching to paperless data collection, you acquire an opportunity to get data-driven insights and make critical decisions faster, which is essential for better competitive standing.
Sign up at www.visitbasis.com to start your paperless competitor audits free of charge. To get more information about investigating competitors by virtue of a retail audit software solution, schedule a free online demo to see how it works, or read our related articles.
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