Guest Post by: Ranvijay Singh
Every blogger wants to build trust and authority. Content creation, and more specifically blogging, gives you the ability to do this. However, finding what content to write about can be difficult. For writing high-quality blog content, the research is the very first and one of the most essential parts.
Before you start writing, you have to put all your effect and focus into blog content research. But where do you start? How do you properly conduct content research for your blog?
Don’t worry. In this post, I am going to share with you everything you need to get started with content research for your blog, and why it matters.
Before starting, I want to tell you that if you are a beginner and want to start a blog, take a look at this guide on how to start writing a blog. This guide will be a great place to start.
So, let’s get stared with the basics.
What is Blog Content Research?
Blog content research is the process of analyzing blog content and developing a strategy and technique for writing unique blog content.
Effective content research also includes competitor analysis, researching the top ranked posts (related to your topics), and observing what others are talking about with your topic.
Why is it Essential to do Content Research for Your Blog?
Content matters a lot. It not only builds trust and connects you with your audience, but your content also acts as a fuel for many of the various marketing techniques. The high-quality range of the blog will help you to not only build more authority, but also become more visible in search engines.
Let me tell you in detail the importance of blog content. Suppose you are selling a product or service on your blog/website. For example, you are selling a Bluetooth speaker. So how can you describe its features, quality, and price? In this case, blog content is one of the best ways to explain all this.
The visitors or readers come on the browser to read content, for gaining knowledge through your content, allowing you to stay connected with your readers. If you have written excellent content on your blog, you can engage your readers, and the essential line “The success of your site or blog depends on your content”.
Without high-quality content on a blog you may struggle to generate targeted traffic. It will also make it difficult and slow to build up that trust and authority.
Think about this for a minute: if you are doing research for a product or service and they don’t have a website, what are you initial thoughts? This throws up some pretty big red flags doesn’t it?
Effective Content Research Tips for Bloggers
1. Read your Competitor’s Content
Reading the competitor’s content is one of the most effective blog content research strategies. Smart bloggers always read their competitor’s content to do better against them. If you are reading your competitor’s content, you will get some ideas, and you can use those ideas in your own blog posts.
When it comes to online visibility, you are competing against every other website out there. You have to stand out. My looking at what your competitors are writing about, you can see what’s working and incorporate that into your own content.
There is a a huge difference between copying (or stealing) someone’s content and using their content for inspiration. You should never steal what others have created. Instead use the content others have written and try to figure out how you can do it even better. This will also help you stand out amongst your competitors.
2. Read Books Related to your Content Topic
You can’t find everything on the internet. But if you read books related to your content’s topic, you can find a lot of great ideas.
When I need some ideas for content writing, I always go to the library. By reading, I get a lot of new ideas to incorporate into my blog. Head to your local bookshop or library and just see what books are out there related to your industry. You may be able to draw some inspiration for one of your next great blog posts!
Nick’s Two Cents: If you don’t want to purchase or read an entire book (Look, I understand. I’m not much of a reader either.), skim through the table of contents. Take a picture or jot down some notes of the chapter titles/topics. In many instances, you can uncover TONS of great content or blog post ideas just by reading the table of contents.
3. Know your Target Audience
Identifying and knowing your target audience is another crucial strategy. Knowing and identifying your audience means narrowing your focus to a specific group. This helps you envision WHO you are actually writing for.
One of the biggest mistakes most bloggers and content creators make is not identifying their audience. Rather that writing content their audience cares about, the blogger ends up writing content they themselves care about. Your content is supposed to be for your reader, not yourself. Remember that.
4. Analyze What Your Audience is Sharing on Social Media
After knowing and identifying a target audience, it is essential to analyze your audience and see what content they are sharing and engaging with on social media. Twitter can be great for this.
Go to Twitter on your desktop and type a topic or keyword related to your topic into the search box and hit enter.
Then click on the ellipses (the 3 dots next to the search box). There you will see an option for Advanced Search.
This can be a powerful tool you can utilize to research content and topics related to your industry or even spy on your competitors. See what people are saying about your competitors and write content that can help those people. This strategy was actually discussed in more detail on Episode 14 of the Nine-Five Podcast.
Tools to Help With Content Research
Buzzsumo is the best content research tool. It allows everyone to find out what content is viral by topic or on any site. This tool is easy to use and will enable you to search for content that has received the comments, most shares and links.
This tool can look back in 12 months for finding popular topics. If you search in this tool for any issue or domain you will find the most shared content from the past year. You can use filters that will help you find the most relevant content.
You can also search for backlinks. It is every function that helps to build up great ideas. It is the best tool for blog content research. You can use it easily.
Ubersuggest is a keyword research tool. It can be very helpful when it comes to finding keywords or topics to target in your blog posts. If you do keyword research in this tool, you will get one option: ” content ideas”. If you click on “content ideas” in the navigational menu or you click on “view all content ideas” you will see a page which shows you all of the popular blog posts that have been written related to the keyword you searched.
Social shares order the list of content ideas. The highest social shares blog posts are at the top. Although Ubersuggest might not be as robust or feature-heavy as some of the other tools out there like Ahrefs or SEMrush (affiliate link), it is still a powerful tool at a much cheaper price point.
Screaming Frog is a free website crawler. It is also beneficial for finding your competitor’s targeted keyword.
Install this tool for free. After installing, open it and enter your competitor’s website URL and then click ‘start’. Now you will see a listing report and scanning a website’s URL can give you targeting keywords. You will get a lot of ideas for related topics to your content and extras topics that you can create in the future.
Have you ever tried Google Alerts? It is one of the smartest ways to do blog content research, And it is 100% free! Google Alerts allows you to set alerts for specific topics, keywords, competitor’s etc. so you are notified when anything new is published online.
Here’s how to use it:
- Go to Google.com/alerts
- Choose your keywords
- Then select the frequency
- Here you have to choose your sources like blogs, videos or books
- Start getting email notifications when your chosen terms appear on the web
Quora is the content marketing tool where questions are asked and answered in the form of opinions. Many people use Quora for finding answers instead of Google.
Millions of people daily ask questions on Quora. If you are using Quora regularly, you will get a ton of content ideas, and you can use those ideas for your blog.
Nick’s Two Cents: People search for content online when they are looking for answers to questions they have. That is why Quora has become so popular. Pick a few questions that you may want to write about and take a look at the answers others have given. With Quora, not only can you find the topics to write about, but you can also find a bulk of the content right there to fill your blog post with.
Pro Tip: I have seen many bloggers also give answers on Quora. This can be a great opportunity to make people familiar with who you are and the level of knowledge you have. Once you start building up trust with your audience there, it can be easy to start sending traffic to your website from Quora.
I have covered many effective tips on blog content research in this post. Hopefully the information in this post has been helpful.
Don’t forget to read your competitor’s blog post and see what your competitors might be writing. Focus on these tips because these are the most effective for blog content research.
After reading this, you should come away with a better understanding about how to perform content research and why it is essential for your online success.
If you are looking for more ways to do content research and how to use tools like Ubersuggest and Ahrefs, make sure you go check out Nick’s post, How to Decide What to Write About.
What is your favorite method for doing content research for your blog? Let me know in the comments below!