• http://www.didit.com Kevin

    Great Article Matt. Often one needs to triangulate between data sources if accuracy is important.

  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/vargamiroslav mvarga

    Hi Matt,

    a good and interesting Article. Although we talked about the grey Area of my technique, I still think (and Google answer confirms that) that you should spy on your competitor from time to time using my approach.

    The core of this technique is to spy on a competitor writeing the same ad, use the same keyword and send it to the same landing page of my competitor. So you can very easily find out his QS, CTR, bid, and some other interesting data. Also, the CPC bid can give you an reasonable estimate of his/her budget.

  • http://www.ppc-strategies.com Barb

    Great insights Matt! I also use SEMRush and like the feature that displays the PPC ad next to the AdWords keyword. When bidding on new business, this feature gives me a sense of the quality of current PPC management. However, my experience with this tool indicates it could be under-reporting an advertiser’s paid keyword inventory by as much as 95%. As you said, they all have their flaws, but when used in tandem, competitor tools can provide meaningful insight.

  • Matt Van Wagner

    catching up on comments:

    Barb – thanks for mentionin SEMRush. A complete oversight that I did not mention them earlier.

    MVarga – Thanks again for commenting. I did not mention ‘quality-score sniffing’ because I am understand it is (or was?) not an acceptable practice, though it certainly can yCatching up on ield quick results and valuable modelling/forecasting data. I’d advise anyone considering it to tread carefully and double-check with their local Google rep beforehand.

    Diditcom – thank you for your comments. Agree 100% that accuracy in bid ad/spend estimation is tough for competitive analysis tools and, as PPC-Strategies points out – can be severely off.

  • alexandra_murashova

    Hi Matt,
    In Tracking day-to-day tactics Keyword Competitor is indispensable, because it’s the only tool that you can use to track what competitors are doing every day.

  • Emily

    Hi Matt, thanks for this great article.
    I am using Keyword Competitor because as practice shows it appears to be the only tool out there that is very helpful in monitoring daily competitors’ activity.

  • Vlad

    Agree with Emily. My company is also using Keyword Competitor to track newly added paid and organic keywords and SERPs. And they put the data in convenient reports, so you can store the data and then get it back to see the progress.

  • Matt Van Wagner

    Heard from another CI tool developer, MixRank – which tracks banner ads.
    Scott Millikin, one of the co-founders, tells me the tool is in beta, and they are looking for feedback from search professoinals. Here’s your chance to influence development ot a tool to make it do what you want it to do! I have not yet looked at it in depth, but plan to…

    If interested, pls check it out: http://mixrank.com

    Matt VW