How to Generate Engaging Topics for High-Ranking Blog Posts
Bloggers often experience the frustration of having to come up with new topics for blog posts each and every week.
The good news is that there are quicker and much less painful ways of generating blog post topics that will not only keep your audience engaged, but also help you rank higher in the search engines.
In this article, we take a look at a few ways that you can generate topics for your blog posts quickly and easily.
Without further ado, let’s jump right to it!
This is by far the best tool for coming up with interesting blog post topics.
It’s a tool I’ve mentioned many times before, and that’s because it’s very versatile and you’ll be able to use it many different aspects as a blogger and online marketer. To find topics quickly, simply type in industry keywords, and Buzzsumo will show you the most popular topics in your industry in real-time.
With this tool, you will be able to see, at a glance, everything that’s hot in your industry, as well as to break it down according to various social shares, including Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. It allows you to choose the social websites that matter most to your business.
For instance, if most of your audience on Facebook, you can simply look at the data pertaining to Facebook and leave out all the rest.
Buzzsumo will show you the headlines that are doing better than all the others, and you also get different topic ideas for your blog posts.
Once this list has been generated, don’t copy it exactly as it is.
What you want is to get ideas from it, and then write your own headlines that are similar but NOT carbon copies. In fact, don’t just write similar headlines, make sure yours are much better than your competition!
In addition to having better headlines, you also have to write content that trumps everything else currently available on the topic.
So for instance, if one of your competitors wrote an article that proved to be extremely popular called, ‘10 Ways to Get Your Dog to Stop Barking at Night’, you might want to write an epic article titled: ‘101 Creative Ways To Get Your Dog to Stop Barking at Night.’
Or something to that effect…
Being able to create a post that is more detailed and more thorough than whatever else is out there will allow your article to not only do well in search, but it’ll make it a lot less likely that people will want to copy it, since few people want to spend lots of time and effort trying to come up with 200+ ways to get a dog to stop barking at night.
Yet another tactic you can use is to look at fairly new posts.
If someone else has a popular piece talking about a new topic, you can be sure that piece has a lot of great sub-headers which could use more indepth explaining.
This means that you can create a series of brand-new, full-length blog posts from each of those sub-headers.
Find Trends within Your Industry
You need to look for topics that are hot when you’re trying to come up with new content ideas.
The biggest challenge bloggers face is that there’s already content online on virtually everything you can think of. So writing content that doesn’t just copy someone else’s is proving more and more difficult by the day.
Use Google Trends:
That’s why you need a tool like Google Trends, where you can simply type in specific keywords and it will show you what’s hot in your industry. You can also use Google News to do the same thing and find out everything that’s happening in your space.
This is how you begin to craft content that will rank high in the search engines.
You won’t be regurgitating old information, and it isn’t just about writing blog posts to meet some arbitrary number of posts that you want to publish each week or each month.
If you want to reap rewards from your efforts, it’s important that you write content that provides value, and educates – content that is useful and popular.
That’s the only way you’ll be able to track more readers back to your website and convert them into leads and sales.
Use Your Website Search Feature:
If you have a search feature on your website, make use of that, too. Hook that feature up to Google Analytics and you will be able to discover what people are searching for when browsing on your site.
If you want instructions on how to do this, simply search for ‘Set up Site Search’ on Google.
After taking a look at this information, if you notice that people search for the same things over and over again, then that’s probably a good indication that you need to write about that topic.
Using the website’s internal search feature isn’t something that a lot of bloggers bother with, but it’s a great way of discovering what your audience truly wants.
Use SurveyMonkey and HotJar:
Yet another reliable tactic to help you come up with great topics that your audience will love is to use tools like survey monkey and HotJar to survey readers.
As long as you already have an audience, you have people that are reading your posts and are willing to give you feedback.
Why not use that to your benefit?
Use SEO Analyzers:
For those who don’t yet have an audience to survey, if you have competitors that have been in the business for a while, simply use an SEO Analyzer such as the one offered by Neil Patel on his website, NeilPatel.com.
Enter the URL of your competitor, and you will be presented with a detailed report.
Click ‘Content Marketing’ on the report, and this will break down the most popular topics and posts on your competitors’ website.
Do this for as many of your competitors as you want – the tool is free! Just remember, you’re not doing this to copy your competitors, but rather in order to see the kinds of topics you should be blogging about.
A great aspect of this tool is its ability to sort content by the least popular topics. When looking for trends with your competition, you can find patterns in the least popular content that they have all run.
Take note of that so that when you are coming up with your own post ideas, you make sure to avoid any topic that is similar to those failures that your competitors have run.
This is a great way to learn from their mistakes and save yourself the time and stress of going through the same types of failure with your own content.
Create Content Alerts
Google Alerts is a great tool for bloggers to set up different content alerts.
You can also use BuzzSumo as it has a similar alert feature. Use your content alerts tool to show you when competitors or websites that you really like publish new articles.
You’ll be able to see how many articles they put out each day or week, as well as the types of articles they are writing, what’s trending in your industry, and so on. This is a great way of keeping up with industry trends over time.
Every time you look at your alerts, try to determine which elements of those top trending pieces resonate the most with you. What is it about those articles that you think will resonate the most with your audience?
Doing this allows you to blend things together, which means you’re not exactly copying other people’s content.
Do More of What Works
It’s not only about synthesizing better content from what’s available out there. It’s also about using analytics to determine how well your own blog posts are performing.
There are times when the content you expect to be a hit will be a miss, and some of the content you don’t expect to hit will be extremely popular.
That’s why you need to keep an eye on the posts that are doing well so that you can capitalize on them.
Carrying on with our online marketing industry example from earlier, you might write a blog post titled, ‘The Ultimate Guide to Digital Marketing for Beginners’ which may turn out to be a huge hit.
If you have posts that perform really well, it’s always a good idea to create similar types of blog posts on related topics if you want to see more traction.
Bookmark Posts You Want to Read Later
As bloggers, we always have 101 things to do.
Sometimes it may prove hard to find the time to read posts while going through your feed, and that’s where tools like Feedly and Nuzzel come in handy. You can use them to save articles for reading later.
After all, any article that is good enough to stop you in your tracks and take action is worth saving to read later. This is also great to help you build an inventory of headlines or topic ideas.
Always Answer Questions and Objections
It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, people will always have questions.
For those in the marketing industry, for instance, people may ask things such as ‘What Is the Quickest Way to Get More Traffic to My Website?’ For those in the pet care industry, you may encounter questions like, ‘My Dog’s overweight.
What Can I Do about It?’
You can go to sites like Quora, where you’ll be able to find a lot of questions pertaining to your field.
Discover what’s more popular based on the votes, then take those questions and write in-depth blog posts that answer them fully.
You’ll find that after about six months to a year, that response post will start to rank really high and bring in tons of traffic for the long term.
Other ways to generate topics quickly:
- Start with a seed keyword then find related topics
- Analyze popular blogs in your industry
- Sift through user-generated content for ideas
- Ask your readers
- Do a content audit to identify gaps in your own content
- Use keyword or topic research tools
- Use Google auto-fill
- Check out Google’s ‘related searches’
- Look at ‘people also ask’ sections
- Use AnswerThePublic.com
- Use Ubersuggest
- Use Google Trends
- Take cues from existing blogs
- Use tools like Buzzsumo to find the best performing content
- Manually check popular blogs for engaging content
- Subscribe to popular blogs within your industry
- Get ideas from Quora questions
- Get ideas from YouTube videos
- Get ideas from Udemy courses
- Get ideas from Amazon Kindle e-books
- Get ideas from pins on Pinterest
- Get ideas from ‘related questions’ and discussions
- Get ideas from Facebook groups
- Get ideas from forums
- Turn your blog comments into blog posts
- Survey your email subscribers
- Identify content clusters and beef them up
The Bottom Line
There are many powerful ways to come up with blog post ideas quickly and easily.
Many tools online allow you to do this for free, but as you’ve seen from this post, it’s not just about coming up with an interesting headline, you also have to ensure that it’s a topic that your audience will absolutely love to read about.
Always keep an eye on what other blogs in your industry are writing. Search for the content that ranks highest and is most popular in your industry, and do your best to create content that outperforms that.
So next time you sit down to write your next blog post and you find your mind blank, don’t panic. Simply use the tips outlined in this article to help you find interesting topics for blog posts that perform well.
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Updated: Originally published July 11th 2019