Kombat's multiple competitor match-up is loaded with superpowers.
Studying one competitor can offer plenty of entry points for further research. And when you compare keywords from multiple competitors, it's a surefire way to find the core keywords you don't already buy.
And with a major feature update inside Kombat, you can compare as many domains as you'd like.
Adding more competitors helps you helps you see a wider picture of the industry and
leads to stronger "buy" recommendations.
Its flip side lets you zero in on potential waste.
If you're just starting in a niche, you can learn the full expanse of keywords in an industry and instantly start with its most popular keywords.
With an easy-to-understand interface and updated metrics, Kombat is almost foolproof.
First, A Look at Kombat’s Key Features
A few key features make this “Shared Keywords” section integrate so smoothly into your SEO and PPC projects:
Automatic Segments Show You Where to Go
Even if you've never used it before, Kombat makes it easy to use and to understand.
We've broken keywords into segments that tell you what you can do with them (consider buying, potential waste, etc.) The colorful Venn diagram is to help you visualize overlaps of keywords that domains share, and the segments show you how many keywords are in store.
See how the gold overlap section pops up when you hover on the “consider buying” segment? That’s just to show exactly which shared keyword group we’re referencing.
Clicking that segment (or on the segment box) will open that set of keywords in a grid that you can export.
So now instead of having to reference a tutorial and look at charts and arrows to remember which overlap does what, you can simply point to the keywords you need.
We’ll cover more in just a bit about how each of these sections can help (and when you’d use them). Sit tight. There’s one more addition that keeps your work moving smoothly.
That addition happens before you even open the tool…
We’ll Get it Started For You
You’ve got a domain in your sights that you’d like to learn from. Quick! Think of 2 strong competitors to match them up against. It’s not too hard if you find their “top competitors” section on the domain’s overview page, but we think a streamlined approach is best.
Just type in a domain, and we can take care of the rest.
The domain overview page (what you see when you search a domain in SpyFu) will automatically search out — and load — the domain’s competitors. You can also edit the domains that we suggested.
You can add more competitors beyond the first 3, comparing (and overlapping) 4, 5, or more domains in an industry. Keep in mind that when you ask for keywords shared across 6 or more competitors, that number will go down. The number of the full universe, though, will go up.
How These Sections Add Certainty to Your Campaign
If you’ve never used Kombat before, you can still get as much out of the tool as someone who has been working it into their campaigns for years. You have four automatic segments that help you zero in on the right keywords for your task.
Here is what you can gain from each one:
The segments themselves are sorted into two sections.
Overall market research
Advice for that domain (PPC) and idea starters/opportunities (SEO)
Overall Market Categories
The overall market category helps anyone checking out their new (or potential) competitors.
Look for these two segments.
Keywords that any of the listed competitors rank for. In the PPC version, these are the keywords that any of the competitors buy.
This keyword universe covers any keyword as long as (at least) one domain ranks for it (or in the PPC version, buys it).
This helps you get a sense of the wide spectrum that the domains cover.
This core niche segment includes the keywords that all listed competitors rank for (or buy).
In this SEO example, the keywords that tasty.co, allrecipes.com, and foodnetwork.com all rank for are considered the core keywords.
If you use the default Kombat match-up, you will have 3 domains listed. You can add or remove domains, and the core keywords will probably shrink as you add more domains.
This segment is a strong “must-have” for starting a campaign. When you know that 3+ different competitors agree on the same keywords, you can confidently add those keywords to your campaign. It’s an easy way to start quickly with confidence.
Advice and Opportunities Categories
The segments in this category are designed to help when you type in your own domain (or a client's domain). We use it as the touch point for any suggestions of keywords to buy or target.
These recommendations help when you are looking for ways to improve your Google Ads campaigns or your content planning. This can be in the form of keywords to add/target or keywords to drop (or set to negative match).
Here’s what you can learn from those comparisons:
Consider Buying (PPC) / Missing Keywords (SEO)
Like with the recommendations from the interactive Google Ads Advisor, our Kombat PPC advice takes your domain's Google Ads keyword list into account. We look for the keywords that your competitors are all buying but you aren't. Advertisers vote with their money that these are the keywords to trust. One domain buying a keyword might be just a test. When two or more domains buy the same keyword, that's a signal.
Note: To get the most from the Consider Buying, Missing Keywords, and Possible Ad Waste recommendations, we suggest starting the Kombat search with your own domain.
By comparing domains, we can see what's missing so you get the most tailored advice possible for keywords to consider buying.
Similarly, on the SEO front, your competitors rank for these keywords, but you don’t. These missing keywords could help you find gaps in your content or areas to elaborate on when the topics are tied to something you do rank for.
These segments include keywords worth targeting. Let the wisdom of the market convince you. When 2+ competitors rank, then that’s likely a keyword worth your efforts.
Possible Ad Waste (PPC -- Negative Match Recommendations)
Just the flip side to “missing keywords,” these are terms that your domain buys, but your competitors don't.
These are likely branded keywords or long tail terms where your site is the first on the scene. In some cases, it’s important to look at these with a cautious eye.
If your competitors aren’t showing up on the same keywords that you rank for, this could be a sign you’re wasting efforts where there’s not much of an audience. Kombat helps you identify potential dead ends so you can spend your time targeting stronger keywords instead.
When you look at this section for your domain in PPC Kombat, consider these our recommendations for terms you should set to negative match. Many times the culprit is a broad match mistake, so this helps you determine where you ad is showing up when you don’t want it to be.
Remember that for this segment, the more competitors you add, the number of suggestions will likely go down. The number of exclusive keywords goes down a bit with every related competitor.
This Questions segment is exclusive to SEO searches. Part of our expanded keyword results on SpyFu are "questions that people ask" related to your keyword. For example, a search of "food delivery" offers related questions like "how much do you tip for food delivery?" and "what is the best app for food delivery?"
The questions segment in Kombat is more of an idea generator. We look at "All Keywords" across the multiple domains that appear in the match-up and grab questions that tie to any of those keywords.
Those questions need answers. Whether you are starting in this niche/industry or have an established SEO base, you can answer those questions in your content to get more eyes on your pages.
We like the way that blog writer John McCoy uses all of the similar questions as headers. It keeps your content focused on the topics that searchers want to learn about.
SEO Kombat includes additional segment options in the drop down menu.
These keywords pull inspiration from the entire keyword universe, but your domain does not rank for them. This segment is incredibly close to Missing Keywords, but it prioritizes keywords with a higher potential to bring in clicks. This could be a combination of stronger search volume, more accessible ranking difficulty, and total clicks on the keyword.
When you select this segment, filter the keyword list to your preferences and then choose the Topics view. We expand on that just a bit further in this overview, but in short, it helps you develop an outline for your upcoming content.
Transactional Intent Keywords
Searchers change their phrasing when they get closer to signing up for a service or booking an appointment. They add requirements and look for details to answer their final questions. For example "what is physical therapy" will happen at a different stage than "physical therapist for lower back pain." We see the second phrase as more of a transactional keyword.
Often, these transactional keywords are long-tail. Searchers are adding words to the search to tighten their criteria or to rule out duplicate info that they found during the initial research steps. "Physical therapy with weekend availability" or "physical therapy without insurance."
This segment helps you find those transactional keywords from your keyword universe. From an SEO perspective, you can build content around them to address concerns and convert potential customers.
A Multi-Way Match Up
To recap, you start by searching a domain (often your own or your client's domain). We will find the top 2 most closely matched competitors based on ranked keywords (SEO) or keywords advertised on (for PPC).
You can always adjust the comparisons:
Once you choose a segment, that set of keywords opens in a grid with metrics and filter options. (Open in a new tab to view larger)
A Kombat-Exclusive Filter
Above, we suggested that you start with your own site in the main Kombat search. The recommendations that we make for keywords to consider buying (or remove) are built on the first domain typed into the search bar. However, there are reasons you might start with a competing domain instead.
Maybe it's because you haven't yet ventured into Google Ads and want to get recommendations of top keywords in an industry. For that, start with a competing domain that advertises, and look for the "core" keywords in the results.
You might also be expanding into a new niche, and your domain doesn't yet advertise in that area. You can still take advantage of the core keyword suggestions without running into redundant keywords you already buy.
After typing in a competitor's domain, scroll to the filters and look for "Hide Your Site's Paid Keywords." This removes any keywords you already buy from the results.
This is where you will enter your own domain to filter the results even more. You can use additional filters on top of this one, but you won't find keywords that you advertise on.
Additional Filters and Column Headers
We suggest that you review the other keyword filter options and available metrics if you aren't familiar with them. Using them will help you get a more tailored experience. That can speed up your work and ensure that you're finding keywords that fit your needs.
Use Filters to Fine Tune Your Keyword Results
Look at the ways you can filter your results for more relevant and useful keywords.
Choose Your Best Keyword Stats
Select which keyword metrics show up in your results.
Results are Separated into Topics
You will also notice that your results appear as a list of individual keywords, but they are also sorted into Topics and Groups.
You can see an example here in a PPC Kombat search for postmates.com. The group for "near" is further broken into related keywords like pizza near me and breakfast near me.
Topics help you make sense of thousands of keywords at a time. Instead of looking for patterns, you can zoom out to see which themes stand out. That helps you develop variations of content in SEO--coming up with main ideas and variations for supporting content.
When you view results in PPC Kombat, the Groups can help guide your ad groups in PPC (Groups).
It's time to put all of this into action, let’s see how to get there:
How to Get to SpyFu Kombat/Shared Keywords
You can start with a domain search and get to the new Kombat (Shared Keywords) section a few different ways:
Path # 1: Direct
You can start directly from the Kombat page--as is the case with most SpyFu features. Go to spyfu.com/ppc/kombat and enter your first domain in the search bar. We'll take it from there. For SEO research, try spyfu.com/seo/kombat.
Path # 2: Domain Overview
There are quick links at the top of the overview page and a more interactive intro to the tool when you scroll down.
Path # 3: PPC Research/SEO Research
You have an option to dive into PPC related tools or focus on just SEO work, and you can reach the Kombat page from either of these tracks.
Both the PPC Overview and the SEO Overview pages mimic the options on the first domain overview page from Path #2:
You can click the quick link from the top section, OR you can scroll down for the tool.