in this guide, we’ll outline the steps for a competitive analysis and explain how you can use this marketing strategy to improve your business. the purpose of this type of analysis is to get a competitive advantage in the market and improve your business strategy. the next step in your analysis involves a comparison of your product to your competitors’ products. competitive intelligence will make up a significant part of your competitor analysis framework, but once you’ve gathered your information, you can turn the focus back to your company.
a competitive analysis can help you learn the ins and outs of how your competition works, and identify potential opportunities where you can out-perform them. you'll want to analyze your competitor's complete product line and the quality of the products or services they're offering. if this data is not something you currently record, talk to marketing and sales to implement a system where prospects are questioned about the other companies they are considering. additionally, take a look at any perks your competitors' offer and how you might match those perks to compete. this information should arm you with the opportunity to outperform your competitors' processes.
if your business plan is for a small shop or a restaurant then you need to take a local approach and try to assess the market around your shop. there are two factors you need to look at when assessing the size of a market: the number of potential customers and the value of the market. your accountant should be able to give you the useful life of a desk (but you should know it since it is your market!). once you have estimated the market size you need to explain to your reader which segment(s) of the market you view as your target market.
understanding your customer base is one of the first key steps to success in business. a market analysis can be a time-intensive process, but it is straightforward and easy to do on your own in seven steps. you can use a marketing analysis at several stages of your business, and it can even be beneficial to conduct one every year to keep up to date with any major changes in the market. key takeaway: a market analysis can benefit your business in many ways, especially if you conduct regular analyses to make sure you have current information for your marketing efforts. your purpose will dictate the type and amount of research you will do. you can also conduct a comparative market analysis to help you find your competitive advantage within your specific market.
bear in mind that all new businesses are different, and strategies for structuring a business plan can be different depending on the goal of the plan or the intended audience. finally, if you are seeking funding, a market analysis is going to be key data to convince your audience that your business idea has the facts and hard numbers to back it up. if you do need banks to lend you money or investors to jump on board, a market analysis section is required, as savvy lenders or investors will need to know that the business you’re pitching has viable market appeal.