How to Write a Competitor Analysis

by Gerald Hanks; Updated September 26, 2017
Asian businessman typing on laptop

A competitor analysis report shows how your company compares to its competitors in a wide array of areas. The results of these reports can be highly valuable, especially in competitive industries. Your managers can learn where your company has a decided advantage over your competitors and where they have room for improvement, information they can use to enhance your strengths and shore up your weaknesses. The competitor analysis can also show you new markets, products and opportunities that your competitors have yet to take advantage of.

Competitor Profile

A vital aspect of analyzing the competition lies in understanding who they are. The competitor profile shows the details about the competitor's organization. The profile can include information such as the competitor's organizational structure, annual revenues and management staff. The competitor profile should also include news related to the the target company's activities. For instance, if the firm profiled in the report has issued a product safety recall, has been sued by customers or has been accused of breaking the law, these points should be included in the report.

Marketing Profile

The competitor's marketing profile shows how that firm approaches the marketing of its products or services to its customers. This section includes data on the competitor's target market, marketing strategies and market share. For example, the competitor's marketing profile could show that it attracts a high percentage of the market share among high-price, low-volume clients by using ads in luxury publications. Your company could combat that strategy by going after the low-price, high-volume clients and using more popular advertising channels.

Product Profile

The product profile examines the competitor's product or service and how closely it resembles those your company offers. This profile shows the features of the competitor's products, the benefits customers receive from those products, the pricing methods the target firm employs and the distribution strategies the other firm uses to get those products into the hands of their customers. Your managers can use this section to determine if they want to compete based on product features, pricing or availability.

SWOT Profile

SWOT is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. This section examines where the competitor's advantages and vulnerabilities lie, which opportunities the competitor can seize, and which dangers it may face. Your company can use this information to build up its strengths in areas where your competitors show weakness. As an example, if a competitor's weaknesses is its inability to bring its newest product to market quickly, then your company can take advantage of that weakness by bringing a new product to market sooner and establishing greater market share faster.

About the Author

Living in Houston, Gerald Hanks has been a writer since 2008. He has contributed to several special-interest national publications. Before starting his writing career, Gerald was a web programmer and database developer for 12 years.

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