Keeping a close eye on your competitor’s activities can be helpful for your business, whether it means identifying new opportunities, honing in on your keywords, or getting a better understanding for your industry. You can use online marketing tools to help you with this task.

Here are some of my favorite tools:

1. Google Alerts – a tool that monitors mentions of your competitors online. Reports are sent to your inbox.

2. SocialMention – monitors mentions but is focused on blogging, video, and social platforms. Key in your search term or company name, and the tool will show what’s being said about the term and how often it’s mentioned.

3. Topsy – a Twitter tool that let’s you look up your competitor’s tweets all the way back to 2006, if necessary. See which tweets were most influential and use a filter on the types of information that you need.

4. Marketing Grader – gives you your competitor’s overall score based on social media activity, blogging performance, SEO, and lead generation.

5. Competitive Research & Keyword Research Gadget – Place it directly on your website to get information on your competitors.

6. InfiniGraph – tracks what’s trending on your social media accounts. Use audience info to know what brands are trending.

7. Google Keyword Planner – focuses more on your own website, but can find competitor data.

8. Instapaper – tool that lets you save Web pages on your bookmark bar that you can access later from PC, mobile devices, or Kindle.

9. Monitor Backlinks – a new tool that lets you follow your competitor’s backlinks and send them straight to your inbox. Know which has the highest and lowest domains and also see their earnings.

10. SEMRush – tool to get information on your competitor’s organic keywords and ranking, ad keywords, and graphic.

11. SpyFu – allows you to know which keywords are targeted by competitors. Keyword list is download able.

12. Website Review from WooRank – multifunctional. It lets you track competitor’s data or use it to optimize your own site.

13. SpyOnWeb – a popular easy-to-use tool to find out what resources belong to a particular owner using a URL, Google AdSense, or Google Analytics code. You can also get results using IP addresses.

14. SimilarWeb – a tool for web rankings that gives you traffic insights for any site. Get global, country, and category ranks with a graph that shows weekly visitor counts in the last 6 months. See how many leads come from searches, referrals, social, or ads. You can even view suggestions of similar sites.

15. Compete Digital Marketing Solutions – type in thee domain and immediately see competitive rankings and unique visitors.

16. What Runs Where – track a list of your competitors and get an alert when they launch a new ad or publish new content.

17. Open Site Explorer – one of the most popular tools that allows you to follow competitor’s link building patterns. See who links back to them in terms of page rank, domain, and anchor text.

18. Ahrefs – shows you the top pages, IPs, and external links about your competitors.

19. Alexa – an advanced Web ranking tool that does linking, traffic, keywords, and more. It is an excellent tool for spying on international competitors.

20. Simply Measured – offers a bit of all on your competitor’s info including trends, traffic and conversions, analysis, social media, etc. With up to 35 reports.

21. Majestic SEO – lets you download link profiles of competitor sites and explore, and use the info as you wish.

22. The Search Monitor – focuses on competitor data. Monitor affiliates and trademarks, as wells as results from Google, Bing, Yahoo!, YouTube, and other platforms like blogs, forums, news, mobile, and shopping.

23. iSpionage – a keyword monitoring tool that shows the best performing keywords and how much the competitor pays for search optimization.

24. Ontolo – a backlinks tool that also focuses on content marketing. Use it to prioritize your content lineup and how to promote chosen contents.

25. Link Prospector – offers many link building features. Choose a report and type in your key phrases to generate link building opportunities that suit you.

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