Hello and welcome. I am Tim and this is my blog and also a personal journey where I am handing out practical hands-on SEO tips for (wordpress) bloggers!

When I first started out I knew little nothing about SEO. I built my first website (on WordPress and a domain name and hosting from Bluehost) and I thought people would find it and I would make a truckload of money from selling the services I offered. I was, very, wrong! I thought, how the h^%ll do you get some love from Google?

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How to Reverse Engineer Your Blog Competitors’ Best Content Traffic

One of the most challenging things about trying to make money online as a blogger is that regardless of which niche you are targeting, chances are, there are people who have started blogs ahead of you. This is unavoidable. You have to understand that in many cases, niches take several years to develop and guess what, people ahead of the line are people who have started websites ahead of you.

There’s really nothing you can do about that. However, the good news is, you can profit from the things that they are doing right and learn from the things that they are doing wrong. The best way to do this of course is to reverse engineer your competition.

For this blog post, I’m going to step you through the process of reverse engineering your blog competitors’ success. How? Well, their success is primarily determined by the content that they posted that gets a lot of traffic from the internet. Your job is to figure out which of their content has the most indicators of success.

How do we define success? Well, for this discussion, a success is defined as the amount of other niche-related and incredible blogs and websites that link to that particular piece of content. Alternatively, success can also be measured by how many influential people on social media networks, like Twitter, share your competitors’ link. Based on these two definitions of success, here’s how you reverse engineer your blog competitors’ best content traffic.

Your competitors’ best content gets traffic through backlinks

As I mentioned earlier, one key way to define how successful your competitors’ content is online, is to look at how many websites link to that particular piece of content. Of course, unless you hacked into your competitors’ statistics tracking system, there’s really no way to get an idea as to which pieces of content get the most traffic.

This is an indirect way of determining success. There are a lot of tools available online that you can use to see their backlink footprint or their backlink volume. A backlink is created when another website links to a completely different website. Use tools, like a Ahrefs or Majestic SEO, to find the backlink volume of your best competitors. You would see a clear pattern. A few of their content, gets the vast majority of their backlinks. Pay attention to those pieces of content.

Come up with the better version of their best content

This might seem like a tall order, but it really isn’t. If you think about it, most online content suck. Seriously. They’re just huge blocks of text and it’s very intimidating to read them. In many cases, they’re not really engaging. They’re not written in such a way that they hit your emotional hot buttons. In many cases, they don’t even have any graphics. These are serious weak points that you can use to your advantage. At the very least, a better version of your competitors’ content involves better graphics, updated information, complete information, or involve longer lists.

Filter backlink sources by domain authority or page rank

This is where the whole process begins to get a little tricky. You have to understand that it’s very easy to waste a lot of your time finding backlink sources. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you would fall into the temptation of thinking that one backlink source is just as good as another source. That’s completely wrong. The reality is that search engines pay more attention to certain link sources than others. This is why you have to filter your backlink sources by either the domain authority of the source or the page rank of the source. Now, once you have filtered used these factors, you need to go through an extra step.

You need to actually go to those websites and look at the actual content configuration. Figure out quickly whether the overall content focus of that particular backlink source is directly related to your niche. If it isn’t, delete it from your list. At the end of this process, you would get a pure list of high domain authority and high page rank niche-relevant backlink sources. This list is worth solid gold to you when it comes to SEO.

Contact your list to add you to their resource page

Remember the first step of this guide? You’re only able to find these links sources because they are already linking to your competitors. In other words, they have blog posts or resource pages that link to your competitors. At this stage of the process, you are to contact these backlink sources and ask them to link to the new and improved version of those resources on your page. If they are serious about linking to quality, they would not have a problem linking to you.

Why? Your content is obviously much better than your competitors’ outdated or text-only blog post. If you have set up your resource content properly, chances are high that these backlink sources would also link to you or if you’re particularly lucky, they might even come up with a specific blog post talking about what you have to offer.

It’s a numbers game

I would be doing you a big disservice if I don’t cover this particular topic. As I’ve mentioned earlier, it’s very easy to lose yourself in this whole process of finding backlinks linking to your competitors. In fact, it’s a lot of fun since you’re using software. The problem is that it’s so easy to just fall into this trap that you’re basically just doing it to get backlinks.

You might think that the more backlinks you get, the more search engine traffic you will get. Absolutely wrong. You have to remember that Google pays attention to quality, so quality over quantity. Always think of quality over quantity. As a result, you need to focus on your return on effort by creating a shortlist of high quality backlink sources and focusing on engaging those people, establishing an editorial relationship with them; you would increase your chances of success. Instead of just focusing on maybe 500 different link sources, focus on maybe 20 to 50 different link sources.