Understanding what your competitors are doing is one of the most important factors of running an online business, that many people simply ignore.
Firstly, identify your SEO competitors by going to Google and searching the keywords that you are trying to achieve and then make a list of the websites that appear to allow you to order a report to understand the profile and structure that these websites are using in their SEO techniques.
These reports provide data that will allow you to structure and plan your own SEO. These reports will provide you with data that can be used for your own website and also they provide the ability to understand in more detail the differences between your website and your competition.
Comparing websites against each other is very important, the basics behind the Google algorithm is to capture this data and then compare websites against each other in order to provide search results showing more relevant information.
Backlinks are a huge part of the Google algorithm and webmasters manipulate links to their advantage using anchor text passing power and this needs to be identified in order to understand and compete.
Looking at the backlink relevance is a large factor that Google use to return the best, most relevant search results.
If you can carry out this comparison yourself it will provide you with a better understanding.