One of the best things you can do to optimize your own Internet marketing is to find, review, and then watch what your competitors are doing online.

I recently did this exercise with a new client and they were very surprised.

They had never done it before. Not only did it give my client incredible insight into what their competition was doing, but it stimulated some thinking as to what they needed to do going-forward.

Here’s my suggestion.

Make a list of 5 to 7 competitors in your local marketplace.

Get their website address and keep it in a notepad like Evernote (

Quarterly or maybe a couple times a year get out your list of competitors and visit their websites and social media channels.

Put this in a Google calendar with a reminder. Set it to a recurring schedule with a reminder and it will be unlikely you forget to do this.

Get out a notepad and make notes.

You might even use a screen-capture tool like Snag-it (

What do you like?

Are they making any mistakes you might capitalize on?

What are they doing that you aren’t doing?

Have they made any changes since your last visit?

Are they blogging? Actively?

Check out their social media pages (Facebook, Instagram). What #hashtags are they using?

Check out their recent reviews at Google or Yelp!

This exercise takes a little time, maybe 45-60 minutes, but in my experience what you learn is well worth the effort.