We all know that competition is an ugly word but competitors are a fact of life in business. If your business can't compete with other businesses, don't start it. You have to have some type of an edge.
You may have an excellent product or service, but if everyone else is selling a product or service similar to yours, just how much of the market can you expect to capture?
You will have to learn everything there is to know about your competition and understand their marketing strategies.
The best way to research your competition is to locate those you consider the largest threat to your potential business. Take the time to make a note of and acquire a feel for how your competitors deals with their customers, then answer these questions:
What appeals to you most about their website, introduction, setup etc. ?
How large of an inventory do they carry?
Are their products display eye-catching?
What is their Alexa, Google, Yahoo, and AOL ranking?
Are their testimonials positive?
Are their prices in line and competitive with yours?
What do they offer that you could not?
Do they offer discounts?
Do they offer a return policy?
Do they offer any special services, such as free delivery?
Which areas could do with some improvement and could you improve in these areas?
Do they keep their online store up-to-date?
What means of promotion do they use (flyers, coupons, free gifts, etc. )?
Next, create a profile of each main competitor. Know how they advertise, why their customers shop there, what areas need improving, and how successfully you can expect to compete with them.
You may also develop ideas for improving and promoting your own business. Your success will lie in assessing and understanding your competitor's strengths and weaknesses.
Evaluate and compare your own strengths and weaknesses to stay in touch with the competition and succeed in your business.
Sonia Colon is owner of a successful online specialty giftstore “Jimson Products".
Visit: http://www.jimsonproducts.com for a wonderful display.
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