I’ve always liked the idea of being a spy, complete with gadgets, fast cars, and an attractive significant other. It would be a great way to get secret information.

Well, it may be too late for me to join the Secret Service, but I can indulge in a bit of undercover information gathering – and you can, too – by taking a sneak peek at competitors.

We’re not talking industrial espionage, but there are plenty of good reasons to see what competitors are doing. You can:

  • Get inspiration for new ways to connect with customers and thereby improve customer retention.
  • Find out if competitors are doing anything better than you and how you can match it.
  • Look under the hood of their search and marketing optimization strategy and see what you can legally steal.
  • Improve your own plans to beat the competition based on data rather than assumptions.

There are dozens of marketing tools that you’re probably already using to monitor your own performance. These can be used to get competitive intelligence. Let’s assume you already know who the competition is. All you have to do is monitor these different areas.

Read more: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/229350#ixzz2i5K54hSL