You might think that bloggers have a bottomless bucket of content ideas for their blogs – but they don’t.
Staring at a blinking cursor and thinking “What am I going to write about today?” is the worst!
Having an editorial calendar helps – but you need fresh ideas for content to fill that up, too.
Here’s a little secret – successful bloggers actually BLOG consistently.
Too many times, I have gone through a content dry spell and then wondered why my blog traffic was down. Duh!
Your readers don’t come if you don’t offer new information.
So, where can you find new content ideas?
Here are the top five sources that I turn to for planning out my blog.
1. Old Posts on Your Own Blog
Can you believe that it can be that easy?
Old posts on your own blog provide a wealth of content ideas.
Read back through your very first posts and think about how you can go off on smaller tangents.
My very first post on this blog was How to Set Up a Website in 10 Easy Steps. Each step in that post could stand on it’s own.
And by interlinking your posts you are adding to your SEO juice as well.
No worries if you are just starting a blog – this is even better. Take notes on every post that you write and make a list of ideas that you can use for future posts.
2. Popular Posts on Your Competitor’s Blogs
This idea is kind of ninja.
If other people in your niche write a popular post – you can certainly capitalize off of that.
And you can do it without plagiarizing.
Give the topic your own spin by providing your unique opinion. You can even link back to their post to provide your reader’s another perspective or to add authority to what you are saying.
Some people may argue that you are sending your reader’s to the competition.
But I am of the mindset that there is enough juju to go around.
How do you find what’s popular in your niche? Use a tool like BuzzSumo. The free version is enough to seed a bunch of content ideas.
While Amazon.com is a fun place to shop – it is also a great place to get blog topic ideas.
Search for your niche and write posts for some of the products that pop up.
They can be review posts or buyer guides or ideas on how to use the products. Just use your imagination.
It also helps if you are a member of the Amazon Associates affiliate program.
Another ninja tip for you
On most of Amazon’s product pages, like this one for the Amazon Echo, there is a section for Customer Questions and Answers. (See the screenshot below).
This is a goldmine of blog post ideas.
If you have a blog that is centered around electronics – yowza! You could do a review post on the Echo (it’s a good idea if you already own one and have tested it out).
Then you could answer several of the readers questions to the best of your knowledge in a series of subsequent posts.
4. Google Adwords Keyword Planner Tool
This is an oldie but a goodie. This used to be called the Google Keyword Research Tool (and I am sure they will change the name yet again in the future).
But the concept is the same.
All you need to do is sign up for a free Google Adwords account and click on Tools in the top menu bar.
My non-scientific method of research involves typing in a general idea into the search terms and examining the search results.
What I’m looking for is a reasonable amount of monthly searches with low to medium competition.
If you want to get a little more technical, this post at Backlinko goes into much greater detail.
The point here is that you can go really crazy with the research – or you could just start writing. Which is exactly what I do.
5. Affiliate Programs
Another great source for content ideas are the affiliate programs and partners that you promote.
Using this method really is a win/win.
For example, I am an affiliate of the ConvertKit email service provider. (yes, that is my affiliate link and I would be forever grateful if you were to use it. 😉 )
Anyhow, if I can solve some common questions through a tutorial post like this one, I will.
I find people asking these questions in Facebook groups or even in the FAQ section on the affiliate site.
Even More Places
Common places to find content ideas for your blog are:
- your own old content,
- popular articles in your niche,
- Google Adwords Keyword Planner Tool
- your affiliate partners.
The funny thing is that the more you make a habit of coming up with blog post topics – the more you will find, and in the strangest places too.
It’s a good thing.
Where do you turn to find topics to blog about?
Help another blogger out and share your treasure troves in the comments below.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which means that if you click a link in this article and purchase something, I may make a small commission at NO cost to you.