Have you ever wondered how your competitors drive traffic to their pages? Or how they choose the focus of their digital campaigns? Now you can fully satisfy your marketing curiosity with Top Pages — a stunning new feature that is only available to paid users of SEMrush Traffic Analytics. Is it worth the price? See for yourself: here are some of the most valuable insights you can reveal from your rivals’ top pages.
Note: Top landing pages are the pages that received most of the unique pageviews and entrances from unique visitors.
1. Possible Number of Your Competitors’ Customers
Among all of the top pages, you may be the most interested in those that have “cart”, “basket”, “pay”, “trial”, and “free trial” in their URLs.
Remember that users could reach these pages both internally and externally (with an abandoned cart notification, their browser’s autocomplete or with a link to the cart that their friends and family had shared).
For example, here is the funnel of Sephora: we see the number of unique users that put something in the basket, got to the checkout and then confirmed the purchase.
2. Maximum Potential Audience of Your New Product/Service
If you are planning to launch a specific new product or test some parameters in an upcoming promotion, you should examine your rival’s top pages that belong to a similar campaign. Perhaps you can discover some techniques that you can apply to your own business.
How much traffic did they generate?
Check your top-performing competitor to get an idea of your maximum possible reach. Gain some insights to determine if their audiences were engaged in a particular part of the website.
You can see how many unique users went directly to the Hubspot’s blog compared to their home page.
What traffic sources did they use to market a similar product/service?
By filtering out historical data, you will learn the outputs of each channel over time; this will allow you to determine your approximate investment in these channels.
We’ve got a real-world example of how Macy’s generate traffic to their women’s clothes section:
3. Your Competitors’ Top Products/Services
Which of your rivals’ pages do you think generated the most traffic? Probably, those that devoured a big part of the marketing budget and initially contained the most exciting products/services for the target audience.
Pay attention to the top pages that represent specific products or product categories of your competitor. Study what traffic sources your rival involves. Then, you can consider adding similar pages to your own campaign or, on the contrary, focus on the promotion of the rest of your product range. The latter case might be a reasonable strategy at times and won’t escalate competition.
For instance, the list of top pages of Coursera reveals that the most promoted and, apparently, the most visited course is machine learning.
You can dive deeper and find the most popular items in specific categories or for different target audiences in the same way.
4. Top Content on Competitors’ Blogs and Partners’ Media Platforms
This insight will be exceptionally valuable for content strategists and SEO specialists. The list of top pages can alert you to what pages you could add to the structure of your website. Even more precisely, it can indicate which topics you should write about to generate the most traffic.
Look at the topics other websites bet on in their seasonal and regular campaigns and reveal what channels they use for their successful promotion. You can gain insights based on this data that will help you plan an even better campaign, whether it be for general brand awareness or conversions. The more traffic you receive, the more ultimate target actions you may have.
If you search for blog-related URLs in the list of top pages, you will find out if and how your competitors invest in content creation and promotion. You may find that this strategy isn't fruitful for your industry.
Want to partner with a media platform? Discover their most externally visited pages to determine the type of content they like or may need before you reach out about a potential co-marketing relationship.
5. High-Priority Languages and Most Valuable Regional Markets
Let’s get even more detailed and find out the breakdown of traffic to your competitors’ top pages by country. Search for a URL that contains a country code. If a localized page or subdomain has made it to the global top, you may find a named country is of great value to the business. Once you have learned the number of unique visitors to this regional page, you can try to estimate the size of your competitor’s audience in this country. Then, analyze the traffic sources your competitors chose to promote each of these regional top pages.
Have a look at the example of SurveyMonkey and how greatly Portuguese-speaking audience contributes to the website’s global performance.
6. The Focus of Your Competitors’ Marketing Campaigns
After you have analyzed separate top pages inside and out, it is time to dig deeper. See if you can group these URLs under categories or detect any kind of trends. For example, perhaps several product pages made it to the top of the list in a specific period; this could mean their product category was the focus of a marketing campaign at a particular point in time.
If there is a company that provides several services, consistent clusters of same-type top pages will help you detect what the company is most known for. Zillow, for example, turns out to be more visited (and stronger promoted) for real estate for sale than places for rent.
7. Changes in Consumer Strategy, Target Audience, and Product Range
After you have discovered a company’s key product or product category, see if they tend to change their strategy and positioning over time. Keep an eye on the fluctuation of traffic to the same-type pages. For example, a fashion e-commerce website mostly specialized in women’s apparel may start targeting towards a men’s audience or develop an accessories section or vice versa.
American Eagle used to promote men’s items— like in December 2018, for example:
While more recently, the brand has been promoting women’s seasonal clothes and underwear more actively:
8. Hidden Landing Pages That Generate Leads
The list of top pages can reveal even the ones that Google doesn’t index. these could have been landing pages made for PPC campaigns which now could make perfect examples to study the effectiveness of marketing channels. You could visit these top pages yourself and see what structure, design, and CTAs your competitors used.
Here is, for example, what you will see on one of the top pages of CIBC:
Similarly, you can gain insight into your competitors' digital performance with the Top Pages feature of SEMrush Traffic Analytics.