The goal of writing for the web in today’s SEO environment is to write for readers, not search engines. This means that your topic choices should be guided by the needs of your customers or readers. As we discussed previously, simply looking at the searches that people make involving certain keywords can yield tremendous insight into what people are looking for. There are a few other ways to tap into the needs of your readers directly:
- Question sites, like Quora or Ask.com, often yield valuable insights into what questions people may have about any given topic. Find questions that seem to be popular but that have no other satisfactory answer online, and write articles that will answer those questions. You can also join those question sites yourself and offer advice through them, boosting your own credibility as an expert and giving you the opportunity to share links back to your site as appropriate.
- Forums abound for topics in a variety of niches. Join a few forums related to your topic and pay attention to what questions are asked often or what problems seem common. If you can offer an article that will answer those questions or provide solutions to those problems, it will be very valuable to readers in your niche. You can share links to your content on these forum sites as well. Just be sure that you also spend time chatting there and simply socializing or being helpful rather than simply dropping links.
- When a blogger in your niche posts a controversial topic, consider writing a response from the other perspective and linking it in the comments. Controversial articles are more likely to attract readers, and this allows you to continue the discussion in a way that provides some value to readers who are already invested in the issue.
These should give you some ideas as a starting point when it comes to brainstorming topics. By combining the knowledge and vocabulary of an expert with the topic ideas in highest demand from your readers, you can ensure the highest possible quality for your web content.