How to do a competitor product analysis by review monitoring

What is competitor product analysis

A competitor product analysis is a process that consists in the research and analysis of the products put out on the market by companies in the same industry as you, with a totally or partially overlapping target audience.

This analysis shows you the success (or failure) rate of their offerings, the customer sentiment regarding their products, and what they consider to be the best practices on the market.

Why you should do a competitor product analysis

This type of analysis will show you how your competitors do business, which means that it’s a great method of (indirectly) learning from people who have similar goals as yours.

When researching your competitors, you’re bound to discover both positive and negative practices. It’s a great idea to analyze the good ones and see why they are good and how you can also implement them. 

But it’s beneficial to pay attention to their bad patterns as well: not only do you see the consequences of the practices that you should not apply, but you may also discover that you share some unfavorable similarities that you weren’t aware of.

Why you should focus on customer reviews

Online reviews are the most efficient metrics when it comes to analyzing customer sentiment, as they provide both qualitative and quantitative feedback.

We all know that it’s important to be up to date with the customer reviews for your own business, but did you ever think about checking the feedback that your competitor is receiving?

What customers are posting on the Internet has a huge influence on the online reputation of a brand. And this applies to you, but it also applies to your competitors.

Online review monitoring is a great way of discovering how clients perceive your competitors. You get to find out about their products, their customer service, their marketing and, overall, you get a clear view of their strengths and weaknesses.

How to collect customer reviews

Chances are that both you and your competitors receive customer reviews on multiple platforms. You can barely keep up with your own, so how are you supposed to monitor online reviews for other businesses as well?

That’s where FeedCheck comes to the rescue.

FeedCheck is an online reputation management tool that aggregates all reviews in one place, so you can easily monitor and analyze the customer feedback.

However, there’s a plot twist: not only you can aggregate your own reviews, but you can collect the online reviews from your competition, all on the same platform.

FeedCheck offers a variety of features that can be personalized according to your review monitoring needs and wishes. But we’ll talk more about this later.

How to identify competitors

Before getting into the analysis and start review monitoring, you need to have a list of strong company names that you want to focus on. It’s usually better to start with a shorter list of direct competitors, which can be expanded later in the future.

Now let’s see how exactly you can start adding names on this list.

  1. Market research. For this one, your employees are your best bet. It would be useful to have a talk with the sales department or even with your marketing specialists. They should be more aware of the industry practices, which means that they also know some company names that they can reference.
  2. Social media platforms. Socials are amazing for discovering companies that activate in your industry. Facebook, Instagram and Tik Tok are must-haves for any B2C brand, while LinkedIn is a preferred alternative for B2B. That being said, it’s impossible not to find specific companies on those platforms if you use the right filters and search terms. Bonus tip: You may find communities centered around your industry on socials like Reddit or Quora. If you’re usually not that much into social media, those might be a good starting point for you.
  3. Keyword research. This is another method that your marketing team should be able to help with. Think about who your competitors are when it comes to SEO or look them up on your chosen analytics tools. You can even just search for the keywords you’re targeting and see who else is showing up. The options are endless and there is always room for creativity when it comes to research methods.

How to aggregate reviews

If you’re using a review monitoring software, this should be an easy task.

FeedCheck offers an accessible feature that allows you to gather online reviews by simply copying and pasting a link. If you don’t want to insert every product individually, you can attach an Excel file with the information needed and FeedCheck will take care of the rest.

How to analyze customer product reviews

The first thing you should do when analyzing online reviews is to look at the ratings (because yes, there is a difference between ratings and reviews).

Ratings give you a quick look at the customer sentiment, as they are a quantitative metric that cannot really be interpreted from a subjective point of view.

However, there is something you should pay attention to when analyzing ratings. The relevancy of the average rating is directly related to the number of user ratings that it was calculated on. 

For example, a 4.7 star score from 5.000 ratings will be far more telling than a 4.9 star score based on 10 ratings. 

More than that, the number of user ratings tells you a lot about the popularity of your competitor.

Reviews contain both a star rating and a written content that explains the motivation behind the given score. This is when you start doing a qualitative analysis.

Detailed reviews give you a better insight into what the customers do and do not like about their experience with a brand.

For instance, without looking at the written content in a review, you can’t tell if the 5-star ratings are determined by the quality of the products or by a good customer service experience.

While analyzing online reviews, it’s a good idea to search for patterns. Maybe a lot of customers talk about an appreciated feature that your competitor offers but that you never thought about. Or maybe there is an issue that keeps getting them 1-star reviews and you start paying more attention to specific characteristics of your business, so it doesn’t happen to you as well.

However, it’s not that easy to look for these patterns by yourself. 

That’s why FeedCheck offers features like Trending tools and Topic explorer, which identify and summarize patterns detected in the customer reviews that include written content. 

We talked more about these tools and demonstrated how they work in our article about how the Stanley cup became a 1-star rated product.

Benchmarking against competitors

After aggregating online reviews from both you and your competitors, it’s time to start comparing.

Which one of you have better ratings? Which one of you has more ratings?

Who offers a better customer experience? Who delivers better products and services?

Those are just a few questions that should get you started at the beginning of the analysis process. After drawing a few general conclusions, you should continue your analysis based on more diverse and specific criteria, depending on your industry. 

Actionable conclusions

Of course, the main purpose of the competitor product analysis is to determine what you are doing right or wrong in comparison to other people in the industry.

Take the conclusions drawn from the competitor analysis and determine in which departments of your business they could produce a difference.

Start by taking a look at possible marketing adjustments, customer experience improvements, and product developments. Use the FeedCheck review monitoring tool to see what customers are talking about when it comes to different areas related to your business and decide what to keep, what to change and what to get rid of.

Also, be aware that a competitor product analysis is not something that requires a one-time effort only.

After conducting this analysis and implementing changes in your business, it’s detrimental to monitor online reviews and determine whether you succeeded in improving your offerings or not.

To do this more effectively, you should use an online reputation management tool that helps you aggregate all reviews in one place.

If you’re interested in a software that helps you keep track of your product rating, don’t hesitate to contact FeedCheck and request a personalized review monitoring demo.