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How do you come up with blog post topics? How do you know what people are interested in reading?
How to Ask Google What People are Searching For
Now – if you want to know what people are looking for on the internet the best place to ask the question is to go to the source of most inquiries – which is Google.
Fortunately Google offers us several ways to discover what people are searching for!
Google Trends allows you to compare search terms to see which words, phrases and even website addresses are searched more often than others.
As soon as you land on the page you can see what’s trending for the day at the bottom of the page. That’s a good place to find a topic for a blog post that could get a lot of traffic – as long as the trending topic is in your blog niche.
If there are no trending topics that can help you, type the topics that you cover on your blog in the search bar.
If you are blogging about narrow niche, type in the topic of your blog. If you are blogging about a broad topic, start with a category name.
Since I’m looking for a topic for my zombie website, I’ll just type in zombie.
It will show you how popular that topic is worldwide or for a particular country. It will show you if the interest has been increasing or declining over a period of time. But for our purposes, we want to look at the “related terms” section. This will offer several topics that you can use for a blog post topic, or you can narrow it down even further.
For my party blog I know that St Patricks Day is coming soon but I’d like to know what people are looking for the most for my blog post. In order to compare two topics, just type them in the search bar with a comma between.
Google Trends will tell me which one is searched the most and will even narrow it down further with related terms.
Well look at that! Many more people are searching for recipes more than decoration ideas so now I know I should spend the day baking rather than decorating the front door.
We have a limited amount of time, energy and money in our blogging and Google Trends helps us know where we should focus our resources for the maximum impact.
In September 2010 Google launched “Google Instant” which suggests topics as you type in the search bar. Some people find this annoying but bloggers know this can be a gold mine for topic suggestions.
At Google.com type in the topic or category name that you’d like to blog about today.
Google Instant automagically shows you the topic search keywords for that term.
Today the search term “St Patricks Day” instantly allows me to search:
- St Patricks Day Party
- St Patricks Day
- St Patricks Day 2013
- St Patricks Day Shirts
- St Patricks Day 2014
- St Patricks Day costumes
- St Patricks Day crafts
- St Patrick’s Day
These are the terms that people are searching on Google right now, in order of number of queries.
There are no surprises in the topics that Google Instant suggested, so let’s go to the next level. Since Google Instant uses an incremental search, we can use it to our advantage to get more ideas.
Just type in your topic then a space and any letter of the alphabet to see what topics show up. Lets start at the beginning with A.
For A the topics shown are:
- St Patricks Day Apparel
- St Patricks Day Appetizers
- St Patricks Day at . . .
- St Patricks Day and (date, history, wiki, meaning)
For B the topics shown are:
- St Patricks Day Baby Outfits
- St Patricks Day Boston
- St Patricks Day by John Mayer
- St Patricks Day Burger King
- St Patricks Day Belfast (and other Ireland places that begin with B)
You get the idea . . . just try the letters of the alphabet until you find the blog post topics that inspire you.
These are the things that enquiring minds want to know – and you can help them by answering their questions on those topics!
Google Adwords is an advertising product, mostly used on a pay-per-click basis. For the purpose of this discussion we won’t get into using the Adwords themselves, just getting information from the Adwords Keyword Tool. You don’t have to have a membership in order to use it. If you don’t sign in it will ask you fill in the blanks in a CAPTCHA and give you only 100 keyword terms, probably enough to give you a couple of new ideas.
The interesting thing with Adwords is that it not only tells you what people are looking for, but it also gives you the exact keyword search terms they use when they’re searching. It will also tell you if there is a lot of competition for each keyword. Its well nigh on impossible to get a first page ranking for a term with high competition unless your blog is already popular so you can use the information to hone in on keywords with low competition to improve your odds of getting traffic.
Here is an example of a search for the term St Patricks Day.
Sometimes searching the terms given – such as St Patricks Day Shirts – will give you even more ideas.
I hope this helps you not only find a blog post idea that inspires you to write but also helps you find a blog topic that will get a lot of traffic from Google searches.
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Once a week we'll tell you the upcoming daily celebrations & the articles you may have missed.