8 min read

Do Competitive Research with Moz and BuzzSumo for Engineers [RESEARCH]

2020 March 6 12:34 GMT-07:00

Today, we will be talking about how to create compelling content using Moz and BuzzSumo for engineers and scientists. Now, the best writing is found in the structure, planning, and research, not a shot of brilliance or inspiration.

Today, I’ll show you how to create compelling content by using competitive research easily. We have created 25 blog and case study posts in the past half a year employing these strategies. Writing compelling and convincing content starts with proper research.

Then, we are going to be looking at Moz and BuzzSumo. So we’re doing more of an interactive session this week.

HubSpot Video


Getting to Moz Top Pages for Competitive Analysis

First, with Moz, it’s an SEO software that helps with backlinks, keyword research, site audits. We are going to get the top pages of your competitors’ blogs or websites. Go to Moz.com, make sure you are signed in, go to Moz Pro, and then go to Link Explorer under Moz Pro.

Moz Pro to Link Explorer

Then on the left-hand side, there’s Link Research and then Top Pages.

Moz Pro Top Pages

Next, you want to click on Top Pages and then type in the root domain.

Marketing Agency Competitors

I’ve typed in the domain of three websites. We aspire to three marketing agencies. And that’s Neil Patel, Impact Bend, and PR2020. Impact Bend is a great inbound marketing agency. PR 2020 has a unique billing system in that they bill you points each month instead of just straight billing you for services.

Analyzing NeilPatel.com with Moz

Let’s take a look at Neil Patel first. He has the highest domain authority and page authority of these three domains. So let’s take a look at some of his top-ranking pages.

  • See how Loading Time Affects Your Bottom Line
  • Affiliate Marketing made Simple, a Step-by-Step Guide
  • Digital Marketing Made Simple: a Step by Step Guide

So you can see that he has some of what we call pillar pages, that are some of his most popular content.

Moz Top Pages Neil Patel analysis

We also see many step-by-step guides, which are his pillar pages, which are long blog posts covering every aspect of a topic. It’s interesting to see what’s popular on a site in terms of backlinks and linking domains. As I’m scrolling down through his top 50 pages, you can see a lot of step by step guides, so many pillar pages. There are also some stats blogs as well.

Analyzing NeilPatel.com with BuzzSumo

Now, let’s flip over to BuzzSumo and see where is his most shared posts online. So first, you log in with BuzzSumo, and these are paid services, and then you can go to content and web content analyzer.

BuzzSumo Web Content analyzer search page

What’s popular for Neil Patel is some stats blog posts like:

  • 17 Charts that Show Where Social Media is Heading

A lot of how he does things is trendy on social media.

  • How to Track and Improve Your Rankings Without Spending Money.
  • How to Generate a Hundred Content Ideas in 60 seconds
  • How I Grew my Dying Facebook Traffic

Neil Patel BuzzSumo Most shared content

If you wanted to follow Neil Patel’s formula of headlines, you could say “how to do this.” I will go into a headline section later on in the video. You are on Content right now and then click on Analysis, which is pretty impressive when it comes to BuzzSumo.

They’ve analyzed the top 78 articles, which had, were fully 112 total engagements, and each item had roughly 1400 engagements, which is pretty good. And then you can add comparisons. So you can look at all networks or just Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Reddit, and total engagement. You can do that by day, week, or month. So looking back a year, he publishes between six to nine articles a month. And then you can see where his engagement is going. Overall. You can see his engagement is going down.

Neil Patel Content Analysis Articles Written Number BuzzSumo

But let’s see, let’s look at it by week. So can analyze it by the week, or you can even go down to a day level. So you can see that his most popular network is Facebook. I wish they had LinkedIn here. Two more options. Okay. You can also export this, but Facebook is by far his engagement. Then average engagement by content type, how-to articles. We saw in the content showing all his how-to articles were engaging for him. And the listicle was also helpful.

Neil Patel BuzzSumo Engagement

It looks like it’s going to take a bit of time to load that data by day. Oh. So you can see there spikes of articles that are published by day and then you can see engagement. So personally I like to look at it by month. And that way, you can see overall more significant trends like social media engagement and the number of articles published per month. And so that’s where competitors are doing. And then total engagement by day published. Apparently, for Neil Patel, Tuesday is the biggest best day to post. And then you can see the average engagement by content link is roughly 2000 to 3000 words.

We just have one domain; we don’t have any comparison domains. You can also add a comparison of others, let’s go back to Moz now. And we’ve looked at Neil Patel.

Neil Patel Domains BuzzSumo

 So we’ve learned that how-to articles are essential for him socially and, but his top linking articles are his step by step guides, which are more pillar pages, and a few statistical reports.  Those are the big takeaways from Neil Patel.

Analyzing Impact Bend with Moz

 Now let’s look at Impact Bend. They are great at inbound marketing strategy advice, and they’re also a great agency. They have some lots of statistics and numerical articles like:

  • 26 SEO Statistics for 2020
  • 28 Little Known Blogging Statistics
  • 52 Reasons Your Company Blog is Worth the Time and the Effort

You can see all these statistical articles are helping them get those linking domains and external links. You can also see their page domain compared to Neil Patel is good but not as high as Neil.

Top Pages Impact Bend Moz

You can see on Impact Bend how pages their most popular pages are statistics pages about inbound marketing, video marketing, and user experience. They also have a great curiosity, such as a headline like:

  • What is Quality Content?
  • What’s a Good Average Landing Page Conversion Rate in 2020?

Analyzing Impact Bend on BuzzSumo

Let’s look at Impact Bend on BuzzSumo. This is a pretty viral headline: 15 Highly Irresponsible Things Marketing Managers Do that Costs Their Companies a Fortune. You can look at their Facebook engagement or their total engagement. And it’s not as high as say, Neil Patel. So the overall engagement is 500 engagements, and with Neil Patel is closer to 5,000 engagements. It’s interesting to see the differences in total social engagement.

Top Shared Content BuzzSumo Impact Bend

They have many curiosity headlines.

  • What should we Do in our Marketing Emails and Newsletters?
  • Are QR Codes Making a Comeback?

They’re asking a lot of good questions, which goes viral in their social media content. BuzzSumo has looked at 1500 articles. We have a total of roughly 26,000 engagements, and each piece gets an average of 17 engagements. With Impact Bend, I’m not sure how they’re getting so many articles published.

Content over time engagement BuzzSumo Impact Bend
Then you can see lists are popularly followed by an infographic, why posts, and what posts. These are their most engaging content type. The best day to publish for Impact Bend is also Tuesday. And you can see that the average engagement by content length, it’s roughly 2000 to 3000 words, which is the same as Neil Patel.

Engagement BuzzSumo Impact Bend

You can see that infographics might be useful to integrate into Theia Marketing’s content as well. Lists are top-rated as well for this audience. So that’s what we’ve learned about Impact Bend.

Analyzing PR2020 with Moz

The last competitor that we aspire to is PR2020. They have a lot of services pages and a book, Marketing Performance Blueprint. Marketing Automation is Only The Beginning: How Algorithms and Artificial Intelligence Will Disrupt Marketing Forever is a great title, but very popular. You can also see their domain rank is below that of impact bend. Their webinar recording was pretty popular. Here are more technical titles:

  • The Technology That Could Disrupt Marketing as We Know It
  • 6 Bulletproof Ways to Prevent Patchwriting
  • Marketing Strategy v. Sales Strategy

PR2020 Moz Analysis Top Pages

PR2020 does inbound marketing as well, but they are more focused on the technology behind marketing. So that’s what I could say about PR 2020 looking at their top ranking pages in terms of domain and page authority and linking domains.

Analyzing PR2020 with BuzzSumo

Let’s go to BuzzSumo and look at their web content and see what has the highest Facebook engagement. They have a lot of numerical posts:

PR2020 top shared content buzzsumo

What’s popular with them is a lot of numerical w kind of listicles. Um, and then if you go into Analysis for PR2020, it’s interesting, you can see the same decline in social media engagement overtime or the past year. In July 2019, they published nine articles.

They are not really what I would say, like blogging regularly with the number of articles published. So you’d wanna that’s why it’s so important to have a content strategy and a content calendar to try and make sure you stay focused on doing content every single month, preferably four times a month. But you can see that even some of the most well-known marketing agencies don’t do that.

PR2020 engagement and content BuzzSumo

Again, Tuesday is a viral day to publish, and it looks like they post content between zero to 2000 words. Their most significant articles are roughly 2000 words. So that’s what’s receiving the most engagement, and they only have one domain.

PR2020 BuzzSumo engagement content day published

So you can, you can see looking through our competitive research, how often people are publishing what the best networks to engage are, and what are the best content types for social media engagement at least. Once we have done all this research, we are looking for patterns and view what the topics are are shared by several of the posts. And you can also see how to structure your headlines, so they draw readers. And then these are the headlines and topics that audiences like.

How to Write a Compelling Headline

 So how do you write a good headline? Sean de’Souza out of New Zealand has free questions for writing a good headline.

  • Is the question versus a statement?
  • Is there a problem versus the solution?
  • The final question is, does it bring up your curiosity?

 So you can look at the competitive research for how to structure your headlines. You can see that we’ve had a lot of what I would call numerical posts with Impact Bend. Then on Moz, there are statistical headlines.

So a number of [something] about [something] is one of what I would call the headline formulas.

Another headline formula is what [something] can teach you about [something]. Or you can go to Neil Patel’s website, and there is:

  • Digital Marketing Made Simple: A Step-by-Step Guide
  • Online Marketing Made Simple: A Step-by-Step Guide

So finally, I want to share with you how to write a good headline. So we’ve seen a lot of good headlines from our competitors. So I like using CoSchedule Headline Analyzer.  

CoSchedule Headline Analyzer example

So here you can see I’ve already had a headline history. My first try was A Four-Part Formula for Creating Compelling Content with Moz and Buzzsumo. And that got a 46. So the higher the number, the better. That title was too long.  

Create Compelling Content with Moz and BuzzSumo was my second try, and the score went up to a 59, which is pretty good. So let me try and niche it down further to Create Compelling Content with Moz and BuzzSumo for Engineers and Scientists. Let’s see, where did that headline go now? So that decreases how good the headline is. That’s interesting because that would help with SEO.

How to Do Competitive Research with Moz and BuzzSumo got a headline score of 79. So you want to play around with different headlines until you get it right. There’s, remember, 80% of people read the headline, but only 20% will go into reading your actual content.

The Best Content Structure

Now we’re going to look at a content structure.

Context: First, we would like to introduce the context or situation, like what is the actual problem you’re trying to solve, why is that problem essential and what you can do to solve it.

Action: Then, the action is what I’m going from now by showing you Moz and BuzzSumo. These are two top tools that we like to use when we’re coming up with a content strategy and weekly content for the blog posts.

Result: is how we do the research.  A takeaway from doing all this research is that you have a better understanding of what types of blog posts to write based on your top competitors, blog posts, and social media engagement on those posts.


You’ve had a good understanding of where your competitors set in terms of the audience preferring listicles and infographics. You can see what the most popular articles on social media and what articles get the most backlinks are.

You can also see the most popular headlines for competitors and come up with your strategy, or you can have Theia Marketing help you with your content strategy.

Download our Content Calendar Spreadsheet

Islin Munisteri

Written by Islin Munisteri