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How To Start An Instagram Competitor Analysis

Competitive AnalysisInstagram Analytics


How To Start An Instagram Competitor Analysis

To know how to position your brand against your Instagram competitors, you should do a competitive analysis. Also, keeping an eye on the competition yields future benefits.

One of those benefits is that you can be one step ahead of your Instagram competitors and see what is currently working for them and what’s not.

So, when you perform a competitive analysis on Instagram, you will be able to:

  • Identify the gaps in the market
  • Occupy the gaps in the marketplace
  • Develop new products or services
  • Uncover new market trends
  • Market and sell more effectively

Continue reading and you'll learn the meaning of competitive analysis and understand how to analyze your competition on Instagram to gain a competitive advantage that will bring you success.

Start a competitive analysis on Instagram in 2021

Table of contents

  1. What competitive analysis means?
  2. Why is it important to research Instagram competitors?
  3. 6 advantages of a social media competitive analysis on Instagram
  4. Metrics to consider when conducting an Instagram competitive analysis
  5. Identify the area of improvement

1. What competitive analysis means?

Let’s start with a definition. What exactly means β€œcompetitive analysis”?

Competitive analysis or competitive research is a field of strategic research that specializes in the collection and review of information about rival firms.

With this evaluation, you can establish what makes your product or service unique, and therefore what attributes you play in order to attract your target market.

By analyzing your Instagram competitor’s accounts and then monitoring them on an ongoing basis, you’ll get to know their behavior, enabling you to anticipate their actions and stay one step ahead.

2. Why is it important to research your Instagram competitors?

This is an essential tactic for finding out what your Instagram competitors and what kind of threat they present to your financial well-being.

The first step in order to create a killer competitive advantages wether on Facebook and Instagram or with outreach, SEO, PPC, etc. is to know who is your competition.

There are three types of competitors:

  • Direct – Businesses that sell the same types of goods and services you do, to the same market.

Take for example these florists accounts: @theflowerseekers and @mossandstonefloraldesign - the common element: flowers.


  • Indirect – Businesses that sell substitute products or services, or items that can be used in place of yours.

For example, if you own a bakery, an indirect competitor might be a restaurant.


  • Potential new entrants – Although you can't predict the future, any news you've picked up about new businesses entering your market should be considered as you analyze your current and future competition.

3. 6 advantages of a social media competitive analysis on Instagram

Doing an Instagram competitive analysis will prove beneficial for your brand in the short and long term.

Gathering data from the Instagram competition will make you understand better where to place your product or service in the marketplace.

The social media game is a red ocean and can prove challenging to stand out from your rivals. Every new angle you find can give you a little advantage and help you move into a blue ocean.

Here are 6 advantages of doing a social media competitive analysis on Instagram.

1. Clarity

Trying to understand your audience is the shorter definition of the term clarity. Knowing what content your target audience likes to engage with and consume.

Our feature called "Posts Newsfeed" can help you achieve that. Below we will look at how you can use this feature to discover your Instagram competitors' posts. We selected the period for the last six months.

Then, we see at this example on Instagram that the most engaging posts, along with their caption, appear at the top.

Here's how the Post Newsfeed looks like

This will give you an idea of what people post and also brainstorm content ideas for your brand.

2. Where your audience hangs out

Do they spend more time watching Reels, or maybe watching Stories? Knowing where users spend the most watch time gives you an upper hand over your rivals.

Based on the research you do above, you can narrow your focus only on a few Instagram features.

Keep in mind that 52% of stories are video, and they outperform image stories on both tap forward and exit rates.

Based on our Instagram Stories study, we discovered that...

3. Find new opportunities

While you do your research on your Instagram competitors, keep an open eye for gaps in your rivals' content.

What do I mean by gaps? Maybe your Instagram competitors' content is a little bit dry, or they do not respond to comments. Or they post too rarely.

You can also find different angles of the same story or put your own experience behind it.

For example, behind the scenes story videos can showcase your unique personality and brand values.

4. Craft better content

As you gain essential knowledge about what your Instagram competitors are posting and being mindful about your post, you can find common ground between the two and overpower your current content strategy.

Creativity comes while you are getting inspired by other big players from your niche. Look at what they are doing and try your original spin of that type of content.

5. Benchmark your brand against your Instagram competitors

Knowing where you stand against your competition on Instagram, with the help of a simple analysis will bring you huge benefits.

Socialinsider has the benchmarking feature, and it's so easy to use. Just drop some of the competitors' URLs of their social media profiles and then hit "Search".

This analysis will give you a clear idea of what your rivals are doing good and wrong.

See where you stand against top competitors

6. Play with Instagram features

The fun part about working on a strategy is the testing part. Test different features to see if they work or not.

For example, upload a short video up to 15 seconds of your brand as Reels. Come back in a few days and see how it performed.

If you think it didn't bring you any returns in the time you invested in its creation, you can ditch Reels from your strategy.

According to this method, do the same with the rest of the features. Invest some time to play with them and double down on what works best for you.

4. Metrics to consider when conducting competitive analysis on Instagram

Followers: The number of followers represents how much social proof a brand has. Social proof is essential in order to stand out in the eye of the potential customer.

Posts: The number of posts is also an interesting metric. You can see how many posts your rivals are posting and tailor your content calendar based on it.

Likes: Everyone is in a rush to get tons of likes to their posts, but why? Likes validate the quality of a specific post. Also, they give you a sense of achievement that feels good and urges you to replicate the same actions that got you there.

Comments: This is basically the feedback you receive for a post. Based on the comments, you can see if a post is constructive, motivating, inspiring, or offensive. Comments are another metric that drives engagement.

Engagement: Breaks down in two separate metrics, Instagram engagement rate/post and Instagram engagement rate/page. Β 

Engagement rate per post means how many total reactions a post receives.

The engagement rate per page represents how many total reactions an Instagram page receives.

Top hashtags: This metric represents the most used hashtags that your competitors are using.

They can be a factor to drive growth to your page if used over time. Some say that you should put the hashtags in the captions, and some argue on the contrary. We say that you can choose to place them wherever you want.

For instance, if you want to analyze your Instagram competition with the help of Socialinsider, follow the upcoming steps:

  1. Add your competitor's Instagram profile.
  • Click on the 'Add Social Profile' button on the top
  • Click on 'Instagram Competitors' Business Profiles'
  • Type or paste the Instagram profile link, then click Verify.
  • Add the Instagram profile to a project, select the history time for the profile scan then click 'Add Instagram Business Profile'

2. Select the period of time on the top right corner.

After that you'll be able to get a full list of Instagram metrics such as:

  • total number of posts
  • followers' growth
  • average engagement rate per post
  • total engagement
  • top performing posts
  • type of posts: photo, video or carousels
  • posting frequency.

More over you can do a head to head comparison on Instagram and see how you stack up on the most engaging social network.

5. Identify the area of improvement

Now the final step.

After performing a competitive analysis, you now have a better idea and understanding of what your Instagram competitors are doing.

Take all the information you gathered about each Instagram competitor and identify particular areas that need improvement.

Use what hashtags your Instagram competitors use, add a location, use the same filter or anything that will increase your engagement level.

Final thought

When it comes to Instagram competitive analysis, the engagement on this social media platform should be one of your primary goals.

You want to stay ahead of you Instagram competitors and learning the perfect way to engage audiences is a crucial aspect.

Socialinsider offers you three types of plans, according to your needs: Social Media Manager, Small Agency, and Agency.

Choose the plan that fits you and start a competitive analysis on Instagram.

Related articles:

  1. How To Create Social Media Reports That Make You Look Good
  2. Social Media Competitive Analysis Playbook (Free Template Included)
  3. How To Create Competitive Advantages On Facebook And Instagram

Maria Ganta

Maria Ganta

Online Marketing Expert @ Socialinsider

I'm a longtime fan of everything social; I love digging into data and showing brands how to use data to boost social media engagement. I can talk for hours about social media.