Expert Search Engine Optimization and Keyword Competition

Staff Writer: Carolyn Johnson


Date: 7.25.2012




It can be difficult for expert search engine optimization firms to forecast both the amount of resources required to build or improve upon a keyword search and to maintain it for however long it will stand. Competition and rivalry in the keyword realm is clearly an aspect of SEO to be further studied. If an expert search engine optimization firmlearns about the “Porter’s Five Forces” and apply its concepts to forecasting keyword competition and the resources required to keep up with said competition, their overall web presence could very well improve.


The Porter’s Five Forces model can also apply to determining SEO outcomes. The model includes all of the external influences that you have no control over. The following forces include:


  • Entrants
  • Suppliers
  • Buyers
  • Substitutes


We will briefly cover each of these briefly and how you can apply them to your SEO work. These five aspects could also give insight into some tough questions surrounding SEO, such as how long it takes for a keyword to improve SEO rankings, how long it will be maintained at that level and how much it’s going to cost.


Keep in mind, however, that the answers provided by this model won’t give exact answers. Rather, it gives an SEO expert an idea of the complexities behind such questions, as well as a generally idea of how to better approach SEO.


An entrant essentially stands for your competition. New keywords can get competition, and entrants are waiting to use the same rich keywords you’re eyeing. An entrant could either be a new competitor or a pre-existing competitor that is either focusing more on SEO and social media, or on organic search and content marketing.


You can drive competition away in several different ways. For one, you could optimize your content marketing strategy, or own those keywords across your whole web presence, not limited to your website. You can also target uncommon, long-tail keywords that define your company distinctly.


In the case of SEO, “suppliers” stands for the search engine. With algorithm changes such as Google Panda and Penguin, search engine rankings seem to be always changing, and keywords that once made an impact may not in the future.


Buyers are your customers, visitors and web readers. Customers can impact rankings as well, thanks to social media signals and reviews from third party sites. Google and Bing personalize searches as well as include social signals in their rankings and search algorithms. Separate your company from the pack by placing an emphasis on local search


“Substitutes” entails your competition finding an innovative alternative to generate more revenue and rich keywords. Such substitutes include tradeshow appearances, paid search or retargeting their audience. Consider whether an alternate marketing strategy would be good for your company.


Competition is the fifth force. Rivalry between SEO firms for great keywords will alter and change depending on the rest of the previous forces.


By considering these five aspects, perhaps your SEO firm will approach your competition from a different point of view.

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