How to Quickly Creep on the Competition And Improve Your PPC Accounts

By Amanda West-Bookwalter | @Amanda_WestBook | Senior Account Manager at Hanapin Marketing

One of my favorite things about competitor research is the “view page source” option on your competitor’s pages. This isn’t always a great source, but when it is–it really is!

Step 1.

Right click on your competitor’s site and select “view page source”.

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Step 2.

Check for keywords. Ctrl+F for “keyword”. You’ll either come away with some keywords you didn’t think of targeting that your competitors did think of, realize they are missing some valuable ones, or see you’re about tit for tat.

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I can see keywords for “ipad, ipads, ipad2″…etc. Maybe I didn’t think about targeting “ipad deals” like they are, and that would be a new keyword for me.

Step 3.

Scan for codes and see what your competition is up to. You’ll either see some stuff they’re doing you hadn’t thought of, realize they’re way behind you, or again–that you’re on the same page.

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You can see here^ that this site is retargeting based on the keyword I used to come to this site, which was “Ipad for sale”.

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They have some Google Analytics codes.

But, that’s all I see. I don’t see any codes for anything super complex, they seem pretty average in terms of how advanced their PPC game is. This information could make my decision for me about investing time and resources into more advanced tactics. If I am on the fence about it, seeing this information could tell me I need to up my game to keep up or I’m already way ahead so I can hold off on it.

You can also click around to more pages and even do a test conversion if it’s a lead gen client for more insight. Are they retargeting based on converters? Are they using dynamic remarketing tags? Do they have a third party bid management software with tags for attribution modeling?

What do you guys use “view page source” for? Has it ever been really helpful for your competitor research?