How to test a competitor’s product:
1. Do Double Testing
Try testing your and your competitor’s sites simultaneously. The best way to carry this out is to build a two-part test in which the users should complete identical tasks for each site. You won’t consider this procedure waste of time when you learn the advantages. The reasons to do this are the following. First, when people know they are testing your product, they may be sometimes too kind and avoid criticism which is what you need to make your site better. So, better not tell them which of two sites is yours. Second, asking them to test two sites, you give them some back-up, or context, so that they can compare and be more objective about their judging.
2. Send Customers Into Journey
Many companies imagine they know their competitor identities very well. However, making such assumptions a ground for your business strategy can be really dangerous. Because your competitors list may differ greatly from the list of sites which your customers associate you with. That means that you should carefully think of user motives and needs when they visit your site and competing sites. To do this, offer your users to maintain a test in form of a journey. Say, if you are a jewelry online shop, set them a task to search for a good store to buy some jewels and see which route they will take and make a list of sites they visited.
3. Test everybody
Have a broader vision of what you can apply and test on your site by testing beyond your direct competitors’ sites. Testing comparables is useful. Remember to test sites of companies with a strong online presence only. Moreover, it is as beneficial to test the sites of competitors you aspire to. For this, make users to test one of such successful sites doing the similar business and ask them to evaluate your own site’s aspects compared to your solid rival. Finally, there is no limit of what sites to explore to improve yours, so try and test at times non-competitor sites to have some ideas for your site’s prospective features.
4. Check Before Acting
If you are introducing a new project and you are not sure whether some features will be worth your expectations – before doing anything, test! Try testing the site of competitors that already have these. Such usability testing will let you know what is good and what could be better about a certain feature for your site. Again, if your competitor has introduced something new into his site, it’s a good idea to carry out usability testing of this feature. Ask users if they like it. Maybe with this feature your rival has succeeded, but there are chances that he hasn’t.
By testing other people’s sites, you can see which of their ideas work and what don’t, as well as get insights into possible improvements to your own site. Don’t miss such a chance!