Best general research practices for performing competitive research

Keeping up with your ecommerce store is a challenge. There are countless tasks to be done, many hours of hard work to put in, and competition that you must always be aware of. Sure there are the massive giants like Amazon and Walmart, but to be honest those companies are too high on the food chain to consider your competition right now. I’m talking about the other guys just like you, staying up late and trying to manage a respectable store. These are the competitors you need to be on the lookout for.  
In this blog post we’ll talk about some competitive analysis tools that you can use towards undertaking a good competitive analysis. You can have all the tools in the world, but if you don’t target the right competitors it’s not going to be helping you out a whole lot. Take this Utah soda war as a proper sign of competition. Both companies offer the exact same products and services. Both are located across the street from each other, and even have the same drinks and treats. Coming from someone who frequents both, I can honestly say I can’t tell one bit of difference. However, they have to be watching each other so closely that they would be running competitive analysis daily. One shop could lower their prices by .25 cents, and that would be enough to drive the other out of business.
So how do you find your own soda war? By using the right competitive analysis tools, and using them properly. First things first, you need to find out who you’re up against.

Step 1- who are you up against? 

This may be a little tricky, but will show you the importance of having a select niche instead of trying to sell everything. The only stores that can get away with selling everything “under the sun” succesfully are the ecommerce and retail giants.
Let’s say your niche is archery and accessories. You sell things on your store like targets, custom arrows, handmade bows, and other archery related items. You’ll want to find any competitor's online that sell the same things. Obviously you’ll have giants like Cabelas that you should be aware of, but not include in your targeted analysis.
To find other competitors in your wheelhouse I would go to Google, and find some of the smaller fish. These might be found on Page 2 depending on your niche, or on page 10+. I would focus on finding 10 really good, close competitors. These are businesses that offer the very similar products, prices, and services.
Once you find out who you're up against it's time to build your competitive analysis. 

Step 2- Research

By properly doing a thorough competit-- See the rest of the article at

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