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9 Advanced -- and Ethical -- Techniques for Spying on Your Competitors Online

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3. Determine their number of indexed pages.

The more indexed pages a site has, the better this site will perform in the SERPs. If you can discover how many indexed pages your competitor has, it can give you a good benchmark for determining how many indexed pages you should aim for. Remember, the best way to get more indexed pages is through consistent, high-value content marketing.

Use this Google query: site:[competitor URL]

Here, I’m searching for the site

Advanced Ethical Techniques for Spying on Your Competitors Online - quicksprout

As SEO expert Barry Schwartz wrote, “many SEOs determine the health of a site in Google by the saturation of the number of pages Google has indexed.” Prior to 2011, the numeric results from query couldn’t be trusted. Since 2011, Google started implementing infrastructure changes to improve the accuracy of this metric.

For sites that you own, you can access a more reliable indexed pages count in Google Webmaster Tools.

Although it’s not a failsafe method of competitor analysis, the number of indexed pages is one more piece of data that helps you understand your competitor’s SEO.

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