There you are sat staring at your brand spanking new website.
Whether you built it yourself or had someone do it for you, it’s a great feeling.
I still vividly remember feeling very proud of myself when this site went live and I spent the rest of the day walking around with a huge, probably weird looking smile on my face.
Suddenly it hits you….”What the heck do I write about on my new website”?
I’ve covered the basic elements that should already be in place in a previous post here, definitely worth a read when you have a few minutes.
Instead of covering the same information again, I’m going to assume you already have these pages in place and you’re simply looking for things to write about to help you get found by the search engines and more importantly, potential customers.
Having access to an endless list of ideas will make writing your content so much easier and it’s this content that can mean the difference between success or failure of your site.
By the time you reach the end of this page, you’ll never worry about finding stuff to write about again as I’m going to show you the exact free resources I use myself when coming up with content ideas.
The only problem you’ll have then is finding time to write about them all!
Tell Your Story
I’ve actually lost count of the number of times I’ve said this so at the risk of repeating myself…
People do business with people they trust
The about page is your chance to tell your story and connect with your audience.
Explain how you got into the business and why you enjoy it, tell them about why you decided to build your website and more importantly, how you can help them by providing a solution to their problem.
There’s no right or wrong way to do it so just be genuine and don’t be afraid to inject a little personality.
Create “How To” Posts
You don’t have to be an expert in something to help people.
The chances are if you’ve built a website for your business, whether it’s about photography, cosmetics, health related, (the list goes on) then you already know a lot more about the subject than most.
That’s the reason they’re coming to your site or blog in the first place to get help, advice, information or to make a purchase.
How To posts are a great way to build credibility with your audience and provide value.
Here are a few types of helpful posts that I’ve written in an effort to help my visitors;
- How to make your website user-friendly
- How to purchase a domain name
- How to write content for your website
The type of posts you create will vary depending on the topic of your site, but this type of content can help you be seen as an authority, someone who really knows what they’re talking about.
Find Out What Your Customers Want To Know and Give it To ’em
If you have an existing business with previous customers, grab a pen and paper and take yourself off to a quiet room with no distractions.
Make a note of the most frequently asked questions that you receive from your customers. If you have staff then you should definitely get their input as well.
Once you have your list, get to work writing in-depth answers in the form of blog posts or pages on your website.
The next time you receive an email from a customer asking about the benefits of product X, you can save time and refer them to your article or post.
You create your content once, and it will go to work for you for many years to come.
Finding Content Ideas Using Question & Answer Sites
Question and answer sites are an absolute goldmine for getting into the minds of your target audience.
We’ll start with Yahoo Answers. Head over there and type in some words or phrases relating to your business.
- Head over there and type in some words or phrases relating to your business.
As you can see below, I typed in “how to build a website” and I was met with people asking all kinds of questions related to website building as you can see below;
- How to build a forum type website
- A site to sell books that offers Paypal as a payment method
- Someone who wants to build a site that has no technical experience whatsoever
- How much does it cost and what software is needed
- How to improve a website
I hope you can see the power of this. After one simple search, I’ve already got 5 great ideas for new content.
Now I’ll simply jot them down so I can refer to them later.
I prefer Quora to Yahoo as people seem to put more thought into their questions and answers so we get a much better idea of the problem they’re facing, but it works in pretty much the same way.
If you perform a search for “Quora” on Google, a search box appears so you can type query directly.
If you go to the actual site, you’ll be encouraged to create and account which is handy to have, but for the purpose of this tutorial, we’ll just jump straight in.
The results will be presented to you directly inside Google and you can click on the links to view the full post.
Again, make a note of them and store them away in your content idea arsenal.
We’re really rolling now, but we haven’t finished yet!
Get Ideas From Your Competitors
Don’t worry, I’m not talking about stealing your competition’s work but as website owners, we should always be reading up on our industry to keep abreast of changes and new information.
A great way to do this is by reading similar websites and blogs. Here’s a quick way to organize them all using a content curation website called Feedly.
It allows you to search and find similar sites and then organize them into categories which you can refer to and see what others in your niche are writing about.
I’ve only recently discovered this treasure trove and honestly don’t know how I got by without it.
Step 1: Create a free account at Feedly.com and click on the “add new content” link on the left-hand side of the page.
Step 2: Enter in your niche or a subject/topic relating to your business and Feedly will bring up a list of related websites.
Step 3: Click on the green plus sign on the ones you find interesting and relevant and add them to your reading list.
Step 4: Add them to the default category or create a new one.
Step 5: Click on the “home” button and then the “gear” icon which is your settings.
Step 6: A box will pop up called “presentation”, I recommend changing to the magazine view, this will save you time as you can skim through the headlines when looking for ideas.
Whenever you need new content log into Feedly, click on any of your categories and you will be met with a ton of ideas that you can adapt and write about for your own website.
Ask Them Already!
This is probably the most obvious, yet underused method of finding out what your audience wants, just bloomin’ ask them.
The easiest way to do this is through your social media channels if you’re active on there. If not, now is a great time to get started and build your following.
Social media is great for brand building, relationship building, and getting to know your audience.
Once you have these channels, you can begin interacting with people and quickly discover what makes them tick and what problems they have.
These problems, concerns, and worries can be the basis of your future blog posts so add them to your growing list, it’s probably getting quite long at this point!
Over to you
Well, those are the exact strategies I use to build my list of things to write about for this site.
I hope you’ve found it useful and it’s got your creative juices flowing.
Now, get stuck in and let me know how you get on in the comments section below!