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This week, we continue our quest for keyword optimization using close to 30,000 data records sourced from five mid-market B2B SaaS firms. In particular, this post focuses on competitor keywords and modifiers to determine the performance of competitor-themed words and phrases.
Competitor Keyword Themes are words or phrases that reference a competitor’s name or brand. The purpose of such keywords is to redirect high intent traffic to alternative (ie. your) alternative.
For example, Googling “Bizible” results in an ad for “InfiniGrow”, a competing attribution platform, ranking top of the search engine results page (SERP). On average, competitor keyword themes perform rather well. Our findings suggest that competitor keyword themes significantly improve Cost per Lead, Cost per Demo, and Lead to Demo conversion rates.
That being said, there are several versions or modifiers of competitor keyword themes — each with their own distinct performances. With this in mind, the following post drills down into specific competitor keyword modifiers for a granular analysis of what works, and what doesn’t:
Before diving into the results, here’s a quick summary of our data analysis technique using Factors.AI. Skip ahead to the next section for our insights on competitor keyword performance.
Our data science team performed individual keyword analysis on five mid-market SaaS firms based on 29,667 performance records collected over a period of six months. This analysis consisted of the generation of two `theme types” — one based on broad campaign themes like “brand, product, feature, and competitors”. This acted as the base upon which the second theme — which consisted of ad groups and keywords — was analysed. Our analysis technique controls and compares a specific keyword modifier with a base-average of several other keyword modifiers to derive a causal interpretation. For instance, “Competitor vs Competitor” was compared with the average performance of “Competitor review”, “Competitor Brand” and more.
Using a “comparison” keyword provides a significant (almost 5X!) increase in CTR
Using “Versus” keywords has a positive impact on CTR, Cost per Lead, AND Cost per Demo
While using “competitor” as part of a keyword phrase along with competitor name produces positive results across CTR, Cost per Demo, and Lead to Demo conversion rates. Curiously, Cost per Lead takes a turn for the worse.
There’s a massive increase in Click Through Rate around competitor keyword themes with “Alternatives” present. There’s also a significant improvement in Cost per Lead and Cost per Demo. That being said, Lead to Demo Conversion Rate seems to take a dip with this keyword.
Performance of keywords with “Competitor Integrations” is a mixed bag. While there’s significant improvement in CTR and Cost per Lead, both Cost per Demo and Lead to Demo Conversion Rate are affected negatively.
Again, there’s a dramatic increase in CTR as well as statistically significant improvements in Cost per Lead and Cost per Demo. Lead to Demo Conversion Rates, however, are affected negatively.
Keywords consisting of “Competitor Review” perform exceedingly well across the board. Improvements are observed across CTR, Cost per Lead, Cost per Demo, AND Lead to Demo Conversion Rates. Hence, “competitor review” seems to be the most promising keyword option of the bunch.
Surprisingly, Competitor keywords have a negative impact on CTR. Still, there are minor improvements in Cost power Lead, Cost per Demo, and Lead to Demo conversion rate.
Finally, empirical evidence suggests that Competitor Brand keywords perform poorly. While these keywords do realise a significant improvement in CTR, all other metrics — Cost per Lead, Cost per Demo, and Lead to Demo Conversion rates — take a turn for the worse.
And there you have it. A granular analysis of how competitor keywords and their modifiers perform in the real world using real data. These findings are immediately actionable — providing industry-level insights into keyword optimization for mid-market B2B SaaS firms.
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