You run your own online shop, and your SEO consultant has told you for the thousandth time that it would help to have a blog where you regularly post content?
Great, but how can you constantly come up with new ideas and then transform them into text? This is what I want to explain in this article.
Abundance in words is a blessing that copywriters can’t get enough of. On the other end of the spectrum, you can have a lack of ideas. Without ideas there is no text, without text no content, without content, no content strategy.
It’s actually very easy: write about your products. You might not know it, but you are sitting on a gold mine that is just waiting for you to find it: your products.
This tip might sound too easy to be real, but it isn’t very hard. Sure, there are thousands of online shops that offer the same product as you do. But the odds that you have at least one product available for which you can rank well are probably at 90%.
Most online shop operators just don’t have the time to check the potential keywords for every product, or to create unique content for it. Instead, they load their products into their merchandise management system with an Excel file and only optimize the landing page for the main category.
It will be a lot of work, but it will be worth it. Go through all of the products you offer. Look at the keywords that you are using and run them through all the keyword tools that you can find.
Let’s say you sell sofas on your website. You haven’t properly looked into the topic yet. You have a landing page that is optimized for that keyword and so far you have called all products “sofa XY”.
So now type your keyword into Google’s keyword planner:
Figure 1: What Google’s keyword planner looks like
In the list below, you get an idea of alternative terms, or even ideas you could use.
Figure 2: More ideas in the Google Keyword Planner
In only a few moments, you find new terms that are used synonymously for sofa: couch, futon, and couch sofa. You also see new ideas such as “sofa design”.
Now you not only have to rework your products accordingly, you can create, for example, an article about interior design, a list of the top 10 sofas, and a guide to the best couch sofas.
That way you have created 3 content ideas with only one keyword.
You have probably thought a lot about your target group. But to know their questions would get you one step further in your content strategy, because the website with the best solution to the user’s questions gets the most traffic.
First, you should look in forums around your topic and look at questions that users have regarding your keyword. You should also have a look at question portals such as Quora.
Figure 3: The question portal Quora
You can also look at the product reviews by customers on competitors’ pages, and of course, Amazon. You can get important information on user behavior from questions and customer reviews.
Your content strategy should address the issues encountered and answer them in the form of a detailed blog post. I also recommend pages like AnswerthePublic or Seorch, which can provide you with questions via the auto-suggest functions of search engines in a nice overview.
If you already have a question in mind, you can use Google’s auto-suggest function to find out if it is already in the index. For this, just type in the question and suggestions will appear automatically. Often these questions are a hidden treasure that you can use to generate traffic.
If you have a lot of terms on your homepage that require an explanation, you might want to create a glossary or a lexicon, and add the best definitions you can come up with. 1000 words is the minimum. By the way, this can also be done for your product descriptions.
Tip 1 and 2 should keep you busy for the coming months, but at some point there will be a lull. So here is a tip that will always come in yourself for finding new keywords: extend your spectrum.
Chances are, your target group is not exclusively interested in one topic. So start writing about related topics. If you’re in the ecological textile industry, you can blog about the environment and sustainability, if you offer fitness supplies, you can write about sports nutrition. Tools such as Wordassociations.net or Google Correlate will help you find related search terms, word associations and correlating trends in the search requests.
The better you know your target group, the better you can provide them with relevant content.
Okay, so I wanted to leave it at 3 tips, but maybe you’ve now got far enough and have already checked off each keyword idea. That’s why tip number 4 is: Create your own content.
Come up with something unique that isn’t out there yet. Let’s assume you are targeting a group of people who watch a regular crime thriller on a Sunday evening, and you sell football accessories. Why don’t you start a football thriller that is regularly published on your page?
This would give your content strategy a huge boost. Not only because you would regularly be able to provide content, but also because the sales strategy would change completely. Ideally, your readers would always come back to you and share your posts online.
If you aren’t good at writing creatively from the word go, you should first create a structure for your text. That way, you know what you are talking about in every paragraph, and what you need to cover.
If you’re not too sure how to structure, have a look at what others do. For instance, you can look at the tables of content in books on the topic or pick a course on Udemy and look at their directory. Don’t copy, seek inspiration!
If need be, you can use questions commonly asked about the topic as inspiration for your structure.
In order to write words, you have to read words. So look for qualified expert reports, books or blog posts that cover the topic you want to cover. Fill your head with the right content, and this will do wonders with what you end up producing. Don’t just transfer what you have read into text, you might end up just repeating someone else’s content. Leave some time in between before writing your own text.
A trick out of primary school, but at a pro level. In times of social media and user generated content, the wealth of ideas online is a true treasure for copywriters.
This is how you harness this creativity:
Let’s say you are writing an article on “furnish living room”, but your imagination fails you. Now you only need to go on Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest to find further ideas.
Voilà, now you have infinite ideas in the form of images and videos that you now just have to transfer into words to complete your post. You just describe what you see.
Sometimes the only thing stopping you from writing a good blog entry is your own laziness. Just start writing, even without a plan or structure – just write anything that comes to mind. The structure will follow.
If you take the ideas of this article to heart, you will not only save real money when creating texts, but also become a better customer consultant.
Dealing intensively with your products and topics in this way will make you an expert. What’s more, you won’t need to rely on demotivated, copy-pasted SEO texts from the internet.
These copywriters probably know nothing about your topic, and your customers will be glad not to have to read generic phrases like “The cupboard is a modern furnishing object that delivers thanks to its varied application options”.
Now really, who reads these texts? You are the provider, you know the products and can provide your customers with real added value thanks to your know-how.
The online shop is an idea machine that constantly provides new content ideas. You just need to catch up with processing them. I wish you a lot of stamina for your creative endeavors, and lots of ideas!
Practice makes perfect!
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Published on 05/24/2018 by Lukas Böhl.
Lukas Böhl ist a copywriter and marketing manager at More2Home. He always has his fingers on the keyword ready to fire off the next 1000 words.Become a guest author »
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