In digital marketing, staying ahead can feel like chasing a moving target. As the founder of a website that helps people grow their online businesses, I’ve found that leveraging competitors’ strategies is a game-changer. 

Imagine navigating the internet like a captain on the ocean, with competitors as rival ships. Understanding their routes and weaknesses is crucial. This is where keyword research, particularly borrowing competitors’ keywords, comes into play. With over 94.74% of keywords getting 10 or fewer monthly searches, this underlines the intense competition for search visibility.

Early in my journey, I discovered Semrush, a tool that’s been vital to my success and that of many entrepreneurs I’ve mentored. Semrush simplifies competitive analysis, helping you identify and use competitors’ keywords to boost your search engine visibility. Today, I’ll show you how to harness this powerful technique.

Step 1: Identify Competitors

Screenshot of Domain Overview tool in Semrush with HubSpot website as an example.

First, let’s imagine that is our domain. Begin by entering your domain into the Domain Overview on Semrush. This will reveal your main organic competitors – those who are vying for the same audience. Compile a list of these competitors; you can start with a simple spreadsheet.

Steps to Identify Competitors:

  1. Enter your domain into Semrush’s Domain Overview.
  2. Scroll down to view organic competitors.
  3. List your competitors in a spreadsheet for further analysis.

Step 2: Assess Competitor Authority

Bulk Backlinks Analysis tool in Semrush for finding website with less authority.

Next, you’ll want to evaluate the authority of these competitors. This involves comparing your domain’s authority to theirs. Ideally, you want to target competitors with significantly lower authority to easily capture their keywords. For instance, if your domain authority is 86, aim for competitors with domain authorities of 42 and 50.

Steps to Assess Competitor Authority:

  1. Use Semrush’s Bulk Analysis tool.
  2. Enter your domain and your competitors’ domains.
  3. Focus on competitors with much lower authority.

Step 3: Leverage the Keyword Gap Tool

Keyword Gap tool in Semrush to steal thousands of keywords from competitors.

The real magic happens with the Keyword Gap tool on Semrush. By comparing your domain with your weaker competitors, you can identify keywords where they rank higher than you. This is akin to finding gaps in their armor. Keywords like “CRM price” or “midmarket CRM” may be areas where your content is lacking but has potential.

Use the Keyword Gap Tool:

  1. Enter your domain and competitors’ domains into the Keyword Gap tool.
  2. Compare the positions for keywords where your competitors rank higher.
  3. Filter results to exclude pages ranking on the first five pages of Google.

Step 4: Cherry-Pick Keywords

Cherry Picking keyword with Position option in Semrush.

By targeting and optimizing around these keywords, you can effectively enhance your search engine visibility and attract more targeted traffic to your site. Focus on keywords that are relevant to your business and where your competitors are outperforming you. For example, if your competitor ranks highly for “financial advisor CRM” but your page is not optimized, it’s time to create or improve your content to capture that traffic.

Actionable Steps:

  1. Identify relevant keywords where competitors rank higher.
  2. Create new content or optimize existing pages for these keywords.
  3. Ensure your content is superior to capture better rankings.

The Semrush Advantage

Here’s a nugget of wisdom: while the free trial of Semrush is only 7 days, I have a special partnership allowing you a 14-day Pro trial. This extended period is crucial for thorough keyword research, content creation, and backlink audits.

If you find Semrush as beneficial as I do, consider upgrading to a paid plan. By using my affiliate link, you’ll support my work, and I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Benefits of a 14-Day Semrush Pro Trial:

  • Extended time for comprehensive research and planning.
  • Access to advanced tools and analytics.
  • Opportunity to perform in-depth competitor analysis.


Creating a successful online presence is like solving a complex puzzle. It requires a blend of strategic analysis, consistent effort, and adaptability. By understanding and utilizing your competitors’ keywords, you can significantly enhance your search engine rankings and drive more traffic to your site. Remember, this journey demands persistence and flexibility, but with tools like Semrush, you’re well-equipped to navigate the digital landscape and achieve your goals.

Disclaimer: Some of the links above may be affiliate links, which means that if you click on them, I may receive a small commission. The commission is paid by the retailers at no cost to you, and this helps to support our channel and keep our videos free.