A successful SEO strategy includes various components that must have, such as the best methods of SEO, the right focus and the relationship with the target audience and competitive factors.
Best practices and audience aspects are both general and specific to your brand. Doing competitor analysis is also important, as you want to learn about brands that are already well positioned in the niche you want to be in.
However, there is a danger that we go overboard when we play follow the leader, trying to compare what the top competition sites are doing.
Ignoring competitors or those who are currently ranking for topics in your target audience will hurt your chances of reaching and surpassing your competitors. But focusing on them too much and duplicating their SEO strategies can have a very harmful effect.
You should definitely find out what other brands are doing and align your strategy with what the search engines are “rewarding” those sites to perform well.
Consider, however, the eight dangers of duplicating another SEO brand.
1. Brand confusion
Most companies want to build a unique brand image and identity. Whether it’s best defined as creativity, messaging, or thought leadership, the goal is to be recognized and known for something.
If your idea of building a brand is to copy the SEO of another brand, you will naturally start to look and sound like them. This poses the risk of brand confusion and can lead to a lack of awareness of your brand.
Even if you get found in Google search results and get your target audience to scroll through, you run the risk of not showing up.
Your website will not be distinctive enough if you have many things similar to other websites, such as page content, pages, navigation structure, and keyword focus.
If the searcher later comes back and finds a competitor’s site, will they remember you? Will it come out?
2. Lack of connection with your audience
Copying an SEO brand from another brand can also cause you to lose touch with your audience.
Even if you’re not replicating a competitor’s branded or trademarked content (because you’re not), you won’t have much uniqueness or views if you’re just copying someone else.
In addition to brand confusion, your content will not be original and you will be less likely to offer something unique and different to your target audience.
If they can get the same content and experience elsewhere, why would they want to give you their money, time, or attention?
Copying your competitor’s SEO will lead you to trade off your unique opportunities to actually connect with your website visitors.
3. Duplicate content and risk of being filtered
Naturally, if you are actually copying your competitors SEO, you are at risk of copying yourself.
Yes, they have things that work for them including their website copy and content that Google ranks well. However, there are so many variables and ranking factors that you can focus on moving forward.
In addition, when you copy textually or passionately, expect to see your content ranked in the SERPs. Since you’re not the original creator, you’re not the same as a competitor, or you don’t provide enough unique copy, your site is likely to be filtered out of Google search results while your competitor continues to rank as a copywriter or founder. .
4. Potential legal action
Although I see few threats and real legal action on organic search, it can happen.
Copying content, ignoring copyrights and trademarks or damaging business links that affect SEO performance can lead you to legal action.
It’s hard for me to come up with a reason to copy another SEO brand or to follow what they’re doing so closely that you’re at risk. Just don’t do it.
Even if you stay away from legal action, items 1-3 above should be reason enough not to get too close to what they are doing.
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5. Being strategically reactive
Having an SEO strategy is essential. If the primary driver of a strategy is to copy other SEO sites, then that’s not really a strategy.
Again, look at the competitors and what is working for your efforts. But, don’t follow them too closely and easily react to everything they do. Blind following will keep you firmly in a position to chase or admire.
You want to add dynamic aspects such as:
Hit them where they don’t compete. Find a clear place to fill and have a strategy to get there.
6. Following a competitor’s poor strategy
Related to the reaction, you run the risk of performing bad SEO. They may rank well for a keyword you want to rank for. However, they can also perform many strategies poorly.
You may have made a mistake about what SEOs are actually driving that ranking.
What if they heavily supported some high-quality links and branding and weren’t motivated by the quality of their content?
If you copy their content strategy and don’t have those links, you’re probably going to fall flat and look bad at the same time.
Additionally, with the emergence of Google’s SpamBrain and the way it continues to evaluate content quality, you have more incentive to differentiate than to follow when it comes to on-page and content SEO strategy.
7. Measuring the wrong performance metrics
Although there are some great “spy” tools that help analyze competitive sites, they are not perfect.
You can’t really know (if you don’t have a CRM and analytics or other direct sources of competitive branding) how well your SEO strategy is working on other sites.
What you can most likely see is where they rank and link to the search volume estimates for specific rankings or queries. Sure, you can print some measured or conversion data. However, the more data points you estimate and combine, the more inaccurate your numbers will be.
Ideally, your focus should be on your end goal. Whether that’s some kind of conversion of sales, leads, or other important ROI aspects of your business, you’ll want to start there and work backwards to figure out what the traffic and process should be.
If you focus exclusively on your competitors’ rankings and enter their positions, then you are copying them without fully understanding what getting their rankings will do for your business in terms of ROI.
You can spend a lot of time and money investing in a copy of their SEO strategy only to find out that it is not suitable for your specific needs, even if it helped you match their rankings.
8. Risk against new competitors
If you are overly focused on copying SEO for another brand, you may fail to consider the bigger picture.
I’ve had clients focus on one or two other companies that were scoffing at the top position, answer boxes, and other fundamental assets in the SERPs. All of a sudden, in those months down the road, a new competitor – or group of competitors – emerged looking very different and leapfrogging the long-established top ranking sites.
Having blinders looking at one or two sites can result in a narrow SEO focus for all the reasons mentioned earlier. It also puts you at risk of being taken over by new competitors and those with a different and better strategy of building authority and relevant content.
Develop your own unique SEO strategy
Remember that following best practices, focusing on your audience, and paying attention to your competitive landscape are all important to a solid SEO strategy. Doing just one or two won’t get you far in terms of ranking, traffic and conversion goals.
Competitor analysis and conversion engineering is beneficial. However, when you know who is ranking well or seems to be working well in the position you want to have, consider the risk of duplicating your brand’s SEO strategies.
There is a balance between adapting well and competing for ranking points, helping viewers, and getting visibility without selling your brand or getting on the wrong radar types.
Additionally, you want to be as resistant as possible to their mistakes letting you down or focus on those behind you. Take advantage of the information, but integrate it into your broader SEO strategy to reap the benefits and minimize the risks.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily those of Land Search. Staff writers are listed here.
Corey Morris is a seasoned marketing professional with 15+ years of experience developing award-winning, ROI-generating digital strategies for local and national brands. He was recently honored to receive the KCDMA 2019 Marketer of the Year award. & # xD;