Use Google Site Search To Discover SEO Article Topics


December 13, 2010

Developing keyword rich content of excellent quality is a big part of any awesome SEO campaign. (At least here at LunaMetrics.) In a perfect world, the subject matter of these articles would be closely aligned with my personal interests and hobbies.
I’d be able to expound for pages and pages using only my innate knowledge of the topic, never have to do a lick of research, and generally enjoying the hell out of myself.

Unfortunately, we don’t currently provide services to any SEO firms, Prada boot resellers, or cello makers (luthiers), or knife enthusiasts in our current client list. Damn. That pretty much exhausts the topics upon which I can expound without research. As a result, I find myself spending quite a lot of time researching a diverse set of topics across many industries and trying to find topics of interest in these industries that are worth writing about.

The (in)Famous SEO Article

One of my favorite types of informative articles are ones which answer a question or solve a problem. I find that these tend to get tons of attention and inbound links. (Traffic AND links, how awesome is that?) But coming up with answers to questions I don’t even know are out there is… well… hard. And I’m lazy. So I spend a bunch of time coming up with ways to save time, (oh irony!) and here’s one of them.

Here’s how to use Google site search to find article topics :

Example #1 Finding Article Topics for the Food Industry

The goal: Come up with 100 article ideas for a foodie website.
The method: Search for site: “why does”
The Result:

The Takeaway: Article 1: Why does my cake always crack after baking? Article 2: Why does my potato salad get watery? Article 3: Why does half and half clump up when making Italian Soda? Article 4: Why are steak sandwiches always referred to as “Philly Steak” sandwiches?

Those 4 ideas from a search that took about 30 seconds. A lot of similar tips recommend using the allintitle advanced search operator when doing this type of research, but a lot of these questions were actually found in the COMMENTS section of the site in question.

Example#2: Finding Article Topics for Bathroom Renovation

The Goal: Come up with ideas for Bathroom Remodeling Articles
The Method: I already know that there is a great forum called gardenweb. So I do a site search within their Bath sub directory to find only bathroom related questions: “why does”
The Result:

Site Search Results and Article Ideas

The Takeaway: Article 1: Why New Grout Gets Discolored Article 2: A review of CBU Brands — Hardibacker, Wonderboard, Durarock, Kerdi. Article 3: The Advantages and Disadvantages of Trench Drains

And now for the bonus: LINKS

The added bonus to this method is that once you have the articles written, you already have a list of URLs of relevant comments, forum articles and blog posts to go post links on. It’s quite brilliant.

Don’t worry, I won’t break my arm patting my own back. I’ve had practice.

What methods do you use to find SEO article topics to write about? We always love when you share with us!