How to Find Blog Topics: A Step-by-Step Guide

Your blog should attract your target audience. It is the place where you can engage with your audience. Growing your blog is one of the best investments you can make: Content marketing is one of the most powerful marketing tools.

Regardless of if you blog about cannabis, fitness, healthcare, dental, wellness or any other topic, the right blog content can help you rank in Google and drive traffic to your blog. And you can also use it to improve your social media presence and to gain followers that way.

But researching and writing blog posts take a lot of time. You should invest your resources wisely so that your efforts bring maximum results. This requires a good strategy.

We cover here four actionable steps that you can realize today to find blog topics worth your time.

1. Define the purpose of your blog

The content of your blog serves two purposes:

  1. Drive traffic to your blog
  2. Encourage people to do what you want them to do

Many people focus on the first goal: they want to increase the traffic to their blog. This requires some SEO knowledge, which is part of any successful content strategy

If you find the right keywords that allow you to rank in Google, you’ll drive traffic to your blog. This may require some time, but blog SEO is something that can be learned within a reasonable time. If you consistently publish high-quality SEO blog posts, the chances are good that you’ll be able to drive good traffic to your website within a few months. 

But generating traffic is useless if it doesn’t reach and resonate with your target audience. So the question is how valuable this traffic is. Once people land on your website, you want them to do something.

Ideally, they should buy or recommend your products or share your content on social media to increase your visibility. People who just read one blog post that they found through Google and then go on with their lives are of no use for you.

So when trying to increase traffic through blog posts, always keep the purpose of your content in mind: What do you want your target reader to do after reading your content?

Keeping the following questions in mind when creating content helps you to generate purposeful blog posts:

  • Who is your target audience?
  • What problems do they have?
  • How can your blog help them to solve their problems?
  • If you have products you’re selling through your webpage: How can your blog help to promote these products?

2. Identify your core topics

Once you are clear about your blog’s purpose, you should have an idea about what your core topics are. The topics should be around your target audience’s problems and related to the problem that your products are solving.

When brainstorming for ideas, these tools can help you:

Check-out your competition

Your competition’s problems are similar to yours. Like you, they have to come with engaging content. So you can simply check what is working for them. This is not about copying your competition (which I don’t recommend), but about getting ideas and finding inspiration. You should also have a close look at how they cover the topics and think about how you can make it better.

If you already have a running website, you hopefully know your competition. If you’re just starting or you think that you don’t know your competition enough, you can use the following sources:

  • Ahref’s site explorer: Type in your domain and then go to competing domains. You get a list of websites that are similar to yours. You can then type these domains into the site explorer and look at their top pages.

  • Google: Type “related:your domain” into Google. Then copy the domain into Ahref’s site explorer and look at their top pages as above.
  • SimilarWeb: Enter your domain and again use Ahref’s site explorer to find the top pages.

In our Cannabis SEO article, you can find more information about how you can use your competition to find article ideas. We use cannabis as an example, but you can apply it to any field. 

Google Trends

Google Trends gives you a good idea about what people who are interested in a specific topic are looking for. It also shows you how popular the topic is over time and if it’s affected by seasons.

Take intermittent fasting as an example.

When looking at the interest over the past five years, you can see that it has increased. So it’s clearly a trending topic. You can also see that there are strong fluctuations within a year.

When looking at the interest over the past 12 months, you can clearly see that there is a peak interest with the beginning of the New Year.  So that would be a good time to invest in marketing efforts and to publish new content.

Further down, you find related topics and related queries, which shows you what people who are interested in intermittent fasting are mostly looking for.

Each of those related topics and related queries can be good starting points for a blog article.

Take a special note of the ones labeled as “breakout”, as these are currently skyrocketing. 

Google images

Google Images delivers you tags that are strongly related to the search term that you’re typing in. In the case of intermittent fasting, people are interested in weight loss, schedules, meal plans etc. You see, lots of great content ideas!

Reddit

Reddit is a great platform to find out what your audience is talking about and what questions it has. There are subreddits for almost any topic, so finding one relevant to your website shouldn’t be a problem. Unfortunately, reading through posts takes a lot of time. Luckily, there is a very useful tool that makes this much easier. 

The Reddit Keyword Research Tool tells you what is most talked about in a subreddit. Just enter the name of a subreddit, and you immediately get the results. As a bonus, it even gives you the monthly search volume. And when you click on “Context”, it leads you to the Google search results so that you see exactly what people are asking.

Google related search function

At the bottom of Google’s search results, you find searches related to your search term. So people who are interested in a particular topic specifically search for these terms. You can even take these related search terms and repeat the process to get even more content ideas.

Exploding topics

When a new trend emerges, you want to be the first one to talk about it. Interest in these topics is high, but competition is still very low. This is exactly what exploding topics is for. Just pick the category your website falls into and see what topics are currently “exploding”. If your website is about intermittent fasting, bingo! OMAD is among the top exploding topics. So now would be a good time to cover this theme in depth.

You should now have a list of topics that your target audience has a high interest in. But you don’t know how competitive they are. When covering these topics, you want to make sure that your content ranks on Google.

To get ideas for specific pieces of content, you need to do keyword research. There are many keyword explorers. We recommend Ahrefs because it has some useful unique features that others don’t have.

3. Research keywords

When looking for good keywords, you ideally want keywords that have

  1. a high search volume
  2. a low keyword difficulty (KD)

Many people are searching for them, and because the competition is low, you can easily rank for them. As a result, this piece of content can bring a lot of traffic to your website.

(As a side note, don’t abandon keywords if they have a low search volume but are highly relevant for your target audience. Remember, it’s not only about the amount of traffic but also about traffic quality. If the keyword is a niche keyword with low KD relevant to your audience, keep it.

You won’t have to invest much to rank for it, and if the few people you can reach with this are of high quality, it can help you a lot. A few shares on social media from the right people can make a huge difference and even make your content go viral.)

How easy it is to find good keywords highly depends on your field. If it’s very competitive, it can be hard to find high volume keywords with a relatively low KD. It’s still possible, but you need to know some tactics.

We won’t go into detail about these tactics here because we covered them in an in-depth post taking CBD as an example.

4. Create content hubs

Once you’ve found a suitable topic and good keywords you can then create blog post outlines for each post, and create content hubs around the topic that will connect the different pieces of content through interlinking. You should have an overview page (also known as pillar page) covering a parent topic and then pages with subtopics diverting from it.

As an example: You could have a post about different intermittent fasting methods. Then create separate posts for each method and link them all to the overview page and vice versa.

This serves two purposes:

  1. When Google recognizes related content, it makes it easier to rank on Google.
  2. It helps to keep your target audience on your website: instead of reading just one article and then leave, they are led from one article to the next, are more likely to discover your products, remember you, talk about you and possibly share your content with friends or on social media.

The bottom line

It doesn’t matter if you write about dental, fitness, wellness, chiropractic issues, mental health topics or any other topic the goal of blog posts is to drive purposeful traffic to your website. If you’re short of content ideas, there are several tools that can help you. You then need a good SEO strategy to make sure that the content ranks on Google. 

If this all seems overwhelming, or you don’t have time to create content yourself, you can also get Writing Studio to do this. We know the ins and outs of SEO, and we have expert content writers who can help you grow your website and your business.

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