Five Reasons Why You Shouldn't Copy a Competitor's Site and What you Need to Do.

When establishing a website, the easiest thing to do is to steal it fully from a competitor or "take ideas" from numerous companies and combine them. But using this principle isn't a good idea. The post will teach you why and what to do if you want to produce something cheap but decent.


Reason 1. You Promote Your Competitors, not Yourself


Your Customers Will Order Goods from Your Competitors If you duplicate the competitor's design totally, you'll be connected with them. Even if you update the logo and offer the users with your contact data, the buyers would remember the competitor's corporate style and buy their items, not yours. Even if you mimic the look of a no-name firm, the people may mix you up, and next time they're comparing numerous offers, they'll choose another company.


You'll Seem Suspicious Let's look at the easiest example: popular brands always have an original design. They don't take them from other companies. Take a look at Apple or eBay and think about if you would buy, for instance, an iPhone from a site that's where identical to Apple's but has a different domain name and contact details? You probably would go to the official website and think the "copy" is odd. Of course, I don't imply that if you replicate a famous website, you won't have clients. You'll get it, but you'll lose the customers who think copying is suspect.


A duplicate of Apple's website can be seen here, but the address is different: apple-x.me. Would you have confidence in this store?


Can Be Confused Brand Names


You cannot copy the name of the competitor or take a name that is quite similar to it. The target audience will be confused and most of it will be lost. For example, if you open two hair salons in a residential area with the same service and call one called Ann and the other Allie, consumers will choose by themselves, practically without thinking. If your company is like this example, your clients are very likely to select another site. It is wiser, then, to advertise your brand instead of looking at the name of the competition.


You can also find a court when copying a name or using a very similar name. For example, for using the kamaz-nsk.ru domain name, the Russian brand KAMAZ (truc manufacturer) recovered $8,000 from Lottos LLC and Lotto also had to pay court fees to KAMAZ. Another example is the judgement by the Court to prevent the use of the "People of Action" mark: both companies have practically the same names, but the plaintiff has assured that they can no longer use the mark on their domain name.


In any event, you can indirectly raise your sales by mimicking a competitor and still remain a non-name company. If you develop your own brand, your target audience will gain more recognition and loyalty.


Reason 2. You're not going to get the same efficiency


You can not imitate the website of a competition, sit back and acquire the same quantity of lead or sales required to expand the company. There are a number of reasons:


It is unclear whether the website works, how much conversion it has and how many specific applications it receives from the competitor. Perhaps the company receives only one or two customers a month and off-line most of its marketing.


You don't know from which traffic the rival gets. Perhaps they employ native advertisements, contexts or teasers or just organic traffic. You can follow this information, but still don't have the complete picture. You won't know for example which source is most efficient, which channels the competition obtains the cheapest or which channels make the largest deals.


You've got another audience. The target audience may not be exactly the same for two companies, even though you and the competition provide identical products. Therefore, what the audience of the rival enjoys is something your audience doesn't like.

The success or failure of competitive sites includes too many variables and not all of them are known. The efficiency of your duplicated site will therefore be different.


An interesting example is here. Amazon was copied by several corporations numerous times, but Target, the American company, decided to replicate solely the review software. After the latest Harry Potter book was released, both companies sold roughly 2 million exemplars, but Amazon received over 1,800 reviews, and Target only received three. Today, the number of Amazon book reviews is over 12,000.


These are reviews of the Amazon book, but Target's website is not available. Let's take another simple example: text. If you duplicate the text from the website of a competitor, it won't be distinctive. First, let's discuss about efficiency content. You don't know if the text works on the website of the competitor - maybe it only exists. In addition, you still need to update anything to match your value proposition. It is advisable, then, to produce and test your material instead of gathering it from multiple sources to enhance your conversions. Finally, you will have no organic traffic if you grab all the content from your competitors and do not publish anything else.


The copied text may damage your SEO as well. You may copy the content of an old site with many good pages and still remain on top, but it's very tough to use a young site to do the same.

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Reason 3. You can deal with problems


A competitor that has copied a site, name, design or anything else might cause many complications, especially if the competitors have rights to the material. For instance, if the design is copyrighted and this is confirmed by a contract, you may be in much difficulty.


The competitor can do this:


Write to you to alter the design, name, domain name or delete any material


Write a complaint to your hosting company, who can restrict your site in some situations


Do not only prevent you from using the unique solution, but also make you pay cash compensation.


Revenge by targeting your site, leaving poor reviews on social networks, or creating wrong path, for example.

In any event, you spend additional time, energy and possibly money on these difficulties.


There are many true cases of such problems. A user of the Pikabu forum under the Jorik1989 moniker confronted the problem when the content was copied from his sites. He emailed the domain owner a formal complaint and an email and lodged a complaint with the hosting company. The pirated site was therefore erased, plus the defendant was compensated for $8,000.



Reason 4. Can be difficult to copy


You cannot see everything on the back of a site and predict the prospective complications. For example, let us say that you decide to steal a page from the site of a competitor, but it turns out to be connected to forms, other sites and scripts. As a result you have to copy all of this, and if you don't see it, you have to build it all for yourself or edit the page to prevent this additional stuff from being necessary.


Here is another example. Another example. Let's imagine you decide to replicate the chips from the catalogue of an online shop. The competition has shown cool pictures, there are many features in the list, the pricing is independently computed and so on. You can replicate the website design itself, but some of the code is still hidden, and unknown variables could be used to calculate the price. You start to create something of your own and spend a great deal of money, time and effort just to achieve a bizarre result. It would be much easier to create a catalogue template from scratch.


Of course, it is easy to copy text and graphics — just tap Ctrl + C and Ctrl + V. But it may be a challenge to duplicate internet calculators, scripts, complicated animation concepts and other features.

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Reason 5. You are going to get less information and less conversions.


Not only should you not imitate sites or solutions, but also copy promotions or discounts. You will obtain less coverage and fewer leads when you are working in the same field or region with non-unique promotions (i.e. the same one as your competitors).


Buyers, in particular online buyers, regularly compare offers from many companies and then choose the best. A unique value proposition therefore works best.


Let's look at a simple instance. There are six sushi shops in one part of the city. Five of them offer free delivery, while the sixth provides free delivery and free order, if not within one hour. If all six stores have the same number of visits, which shop do you think will get the most customers?


You must constantly monitor your competitors' marketing activities, not so that you can copy them but so that you can offer your target audience something original, cooler, and better for the buyers.


What can you do if you want to copy anything?


You shouldn't mindlessly duplicate the website design, a particular solution or a piece of content. First, consider what you like: the structure, the presentation, the colours, a single sentence, or anything else. Then evaluate the website of the competitor to see whether what you want works very well.


If you really enjoy chips, you can try to implement them. But again, do not just duplicate it, but instead utilise it as an idea.


Use other bright hues if you like the vivid look.


Position the menu in the same place as you would like, but with its own structure and use different but comparable language on conversion buttons.


If you like the landing page structure, tweak it for your product and add something useful, intriguing and interesting.

You build something that works but is yours, and competition can't blame you for copying their designs. More than one competition can also be analysed to find various successful ways that help you convert.


Do not forget that taste is subjective even when adopting ideas from a competitor's site. You may like this site, but it might not appeal to the target audience and it is a waste of money to use as an inspiration. Don't forget to test your site, therefore.


Naturally, analysing the website of a competition and executing tests are harder than duplicating a solution you like without any tests. But testing is considerably more efficient - you can understand and deliver exactly what your target group needs.


Opinions of experts: why you cannot copy solutions from web sites of competitors?


We have various problems when customers come to us and ask us to reproduce sophisticated functions.


Here's one problem: a customer who ordered a big competitor to clone a computer. What was the problem? What was the problem? We can visually replicate it, create the same fields and style it the same way - this part is simple. However, the backend of the calculator included some logistics which were not evident. The competitor was able to have its own tariffs, computations, and variables, all of which were in the codes and invisible when dealing with the calculator. We started digging, but in the end the calculator turned out to be a duplicate of the Frankenstein monster. It would have been easier if the customer had instantly given us his costs and all the variables that would effect the calculations and we could have quickly established a customised calculator. However, we had to confront the uncomfortable adjustment of a calculator that "must be copied from the contestant." If there is no one to adapt and no expertise, then it is very possible that we will lose a lot of time and effort and do nothing at all.


This is another issue. This is another issue. Customers sometimes ask us to copy and adapt a page to suit a customer, but it is related to other parts. I duplicated a page, for example, but it's linked to a couple other sites and forms. This could lead to increased charges.


There is also a problem with the design and style copying. The buyer must tell what he loves and doesn't like. Normally, he can't like everything, thus a game begins if the customer doesn't tell us exactly what he likes. Using the blocks and elements, you should ideally discuss everything – what to leave or what to remove. In this instance, you might have a comparable style but a personalised product.


I don't argue copying is evil, but copying must be done wisely. I'm going to explain why. Why.


First of all, you need to match the niche and market standards, not "copy competitors." For instance, most hostels have Wi-Fi internet access. You'll lose customers if you've got a hostel without Wi-Fi. All online shops have filtering – it is a necessary — so both search engines and people take it into account. There are specific criteria in any specialty and you must meet them.


Secondly, a common mistake I notice is stealing from your league a competitor—for example, when a regional business is trying to duplicate Takeaway.com's feature. The regional service offers a limited range and a different business model, so it will do little to replicate Takeaway.com. Please copy something (not everything) from your league companies, and it will work better.


Third, brand imitation errors might be hazardous. Some company owners don't want to repair errors since they have rivals. Let's see an example. There are various usability issues in the Lamoda Online Store (very popular in Russia and the CIS nations). If your online marketer tells you to rectify similar problems, you must refer to this brand and shoppers frequently choose this brand for their free equipment, rapid shipping and loyalty programme. The same is true of Avito. The site makes many mistakes, but as it has a monopoly on free adverts, many still utilise the site. Because of the business advantages, customers of huge brands make mistakes. You have a different business and fewer clients, so that your audience converts more easily, you must pay attention to faults and usability.


Finally, all companies have various target audiences. In the same mall, even two grocery stores are visited by various people. There is no audience crossover of 100 percent. Conversion is influenced by the least nuances and you just hurt your business if you blindly replicate everything.

There was almost no one to copy from when we designed the first iteration of our service. There are still very few rivals both in Russia and abroad in our industry, therefore we began to explore for ideas in related fields.


We investigated Booking and Airbnb attentively and found an idea that looked really excellent. We believed it was convenient - if a person is wanting to rent something, like a bike or a tent, it is better to grasp where this object is than what it looks like. Our hypothesis was approved and developed unanimously and the whole site look was designed taking into mind the display of the map on half the screen.


We took a great deal of time and effort to implement this process and then waited a long time for the site visitors to start to use it. We opted to hide the map a year later, leaving just the "Show" option. We've all revamped this month, so there's no map at all. Practice has shown us it is not necessary. On our website, people seek for stuff to rent with filters and choose from the photographs.


Did you find copying? Tell us your experience. Tell us your experience. Hearing your opinions is always intriguing!


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