Step by Step Competitive Analysis, Templates and Examples (Page 2)

Compare Your Business to the Competition

A number of factors that can affect your business success are explained below. On this page, compare your business to your three competitors.

  1. Products: Which product do the job better?
  2. Price: How consistent are the prices?
  3. Quality:  How long does the product last? How good are teh materials and workmanship?
  4. Product Selection – How complete is the product line? What options are available?
  5. Customer Service – How polite and thorough is the service?
  6. Product Service – How quickly and effectively is the product serviced?
  7. Reliability – How frequently does the product require service or repar?
  8. Expertise – How knowledgeable is the staff?<br>
  9. Image/Reputation – How important or useful is the company or product name?
  10. Location – How effective is the location? Consider accessbility, parking, convenience and visibility.
  11. Layout – How efficiently is the space unitlized?<br>
  12. Appearance – How closely does the appearance match the customer’s expectations?
  13. Sales methods – How polite and effective at making sales is the staff?
  14. Credit policy – Can customers use a variety of payment methods
  15. Availability – How quickly does the customer receive the product?
  16. Management – How actively involved in the business is the store owner?
  17. Longevity/Stability – How stable is the business? In general, older businesses are considered more stable.<br>
  18. Advertising – How much does the business advertise? Those who advertise are more visible than those who don’t.

What Factors Are Most Important In Your Business?

 Determine the importance of each of the factors listed below. Assign 1 to the top priority area, 2 to the second, etc. until you have ranked all by priority.

For each area of comparison rank you and your three competitors on a scale of 1 (best) to 4 (worst).

1. Products     
2. Price     
3. Quality     
4. Product selection     
5. Customer service     
6. Product service     
7. Reliability     
8. Expertise     
9. Image/Reputation     
10. Location     
11. Layout     
12. Appearance     
13. Sales methods     
14. Credit policy     
15. Availability     
16. Management     
17. Longevity/Stability     
18. Advertising     
19. Other (specify)     
20. Other (specify)     

1.  From your entries in the list above, identify the key success factors in your business. Then, assess how you stack up against your competition.




2. What changes will improve your competitive position?



 3. What are the prospects of new competition entering the market?




Sources of Competitive Information

  • Trade shows (visit competitors booths)
  • Ask customers about their perception of competitors
  • Mystery shop other companies
  • Networking with employees from competitors
  • Trade magazines
  • Annual reports and government filings
  • Industry publications
  • Marketing materials
  • Website review
  • Visit locations
  • Evaluate advertising campaigns (check

Templates and eBooks


(PDF Download)
CIMABusiness Plans Guide


(PDF Download)
Business Planning Guide


(PDF Download)
Business Makeover



Inc. Magazine: How to Write a Great Business Plan: Competitive Analysis

Editor and Publisher: Jeff Grill

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