- Many store owners are confused by the need for blogs
- Those that want a blog don’t know what to blog about
- This blog lists 9 creative topics to provide you with an almost limitless supply of ideas
An interesting blog published regularly has the ability to keep visitors on your site for longer, drive traffic via organic search and provide a regular supply of engaging content to share across your social platforms.
But even if you’ve been convinced on the merits of blogging, one problem remains: what on earth are you supposed to write about?
This post attempts to answer that question.
By the time you finish reading, you should have enough inspiration to create an almost limitless supply of ideas for your store’s blog.
The Number 1 Rule of Successful Blogging
Before we move onto the ideas, there’s one rule you should always keep in mind when blogging:
Every blog must provide value to your readers.
Each time you prepare a cup of tea and sit down to create a blog post, think about who is reading it and why they would want to read it.
What will they get from it? Information? Knowledge? Excitement?
Think about it: if a blog provides them with value, they are more likely to read it – and then share it and link to it.
And if your readers feel that you are committed to providing them with a genuinely valuable experience, this helps to develop your relationship with them.
And that will make them more likely to want to buy from you.
Now, let’s move onto those ideas.
1. FAQ Section
I’m going to start with this one because it works for nearly all ecommerce stores, no matter what you’re selling.
The idea is that you use your blog as an FAQ section as follows:
- Ask a question in the title
- Answer the question in the body
- Tag each blog as ‘FAQs’ so they can be found easily
It’s a much more engaging way to create an FAQ page. And no matter what you sell, you have an almost unlimited number of informative and useful topics to write on.
It has one other major benefit: it’s an amazing way to target keywords.
Let’s say you sell office furniture and you find out that a popular question is: ‘What is the best chair for a home office?’
That exact question would then become the title of your blog.
Now, because people are searching for that exact phrase you’ve just used in the title, you stand a better chance of your blog showing up in the search results when someone asks Google this same question.
Of course, the answer in the blog body must be informative and packed with all the things people need to know when choosing an office chair.
If you wish, link to a few relevant products in your store within the blog. That way, you will come across as helpful rather than pushy. After all, you’re not just trying to sell something; you’re providing a solution to a problem.
2. Interesting Product Developments
You sell products in your store, so it makes sense that a lot of what you discuss in your blog will be product-related in some way.
When I say ‘Interesting Product Developments’, what I mean is anything newsworthy or different that your customers would find worth reading about.
New product arrivals provide you with an excellent opportunity to create an engaging blog post. They are newsworthy, exciting and you can demonstrate your genuine excitement about the arrival (along with why you chose it, how you hope it will help them, and more).
You could do the same with new product bundles.
Perhaps you’re creating a special Halloween bundle or a Mother’s Day bundle. This is no doubt a topic worthy of a new blog post.
NOTE: When you write about specific products, go easy on the hard-selling. Focus instead on what it does and how it helps people, and add some narrative. Leave the hard selling to the product page.
3. Video Demonstrations
Unless you’ve been living in a small community of nomadic tribesmen with no access to the internet for the last few years, you will know that video has become rather popular.
Smart ecommerce store owners have been quick to pick up on this trend, and one of the best ways to use videos is via product demonstrations.
How about this:
- Set up your camera and film yourself demonstrating a product from your store
- Talk about its features and why it’s such a welcome addition to your store
- Try to answer any questions your customers might have
This is so simple. There’s no writing involved, and you can have a polished video ready to publish in a matter of hours.
You may even find that people (some of them, at least) are more interested in watching your products than reading about them.
4. Staff Picks
Another simple but effective technique is to create a blog on staff picks.
Simply get everyone in the office to write a paragraph on their favourite product in your store, explaining why they like it so much. Add an image and a link to each, and you’re done.
This can become a regular feature:
- Staff picks for summer
- Staff picks for Christmas
- Staff picks for Easter
… you get the idea.
Besides being quick and easy, this provides you with a more interesting and engaging way to highlight products in your store.
Rather than simply highlighting a product and saying ‘check it out’, you’re providing a personal angle and showing the human side of your business. That’s powerful stuff.
5. Lifestyle Topics Related to Your Products
This is a big one, and you’ll find many stores focusing on this idea. The aim here is that rather than just talk about your products, you write on topics that your target customers would enjoy reading about.
Let’s say you sell hiking gear.
Rather than publish a blog about the best hiking gear, you could write a blog about the best summer hikes in Europe.
Pack it full of valuable information, then drop in references to your products showing how they will make your customers’ hikes more comfortable and rewarding.
You can do the same with any niche. Whatever you sell, think about the hobbies and activities that your target customers enjoy doing and create blogs around those topics.
Your posts are more likely to generate interest and get social shares when you do this. And you’ll be building important relationships with the very people who are most likely to spend money in your store.
6. What Customers Think
Once you’ve built up a large list of customers, encourage them to contribute. User-generated content (UGC) is always a good option for your ecommerce blog.
One simple way to do this is to ask your customers to tell you how they are using your products. Going back to the hiking gear example, you could ask them to describe their top experience of hiking while using your products.
Encourage them to share their experiences, and you’ll have plenty of material for a blog post.
People love stories, and your ecommerce blog is the perfect place to tell stories and connect with your audience. I wrote a blog on this a while back.
But what types of stories should you write about? Here are a few ideas:
- What made you start your business
- Where you want to be in five years’ time
- Experiences you have had using your products (e.g. a recent fishing trip, decorating your baby’s bedroom, going on a new diet)
- Customer stories
There are so many angles you can take, so try a few. Tell stories, engage your readers and form a connection.
8. Related Events
If there are events related to your niche (marathons, beer festivals, snowboarding competitions, etc), blog about these.
Which types of events will your target customers be likely to attend? Find out and then write about them. You could even visit the events yourself and blog about the experience.
Doing this helps to form a stronger relationship with your customers because you are showing that you care about the same things as they do.
9. How Things Are Made
Finally, how about blogging about how your products are made? People are always fascinated by this.
If you provide handmade furniture or anything that has an interesting story behind it, post a blog about how different products come into being.
So there you have it, 9 easy ideas to get your blog into shape. There is plenty here to keep you going indefinitely, but this is just the start.
You could actually take just one of these ideas and run with it as long as you wanted. Perhaps number 5, lifestyle topics – there are countless topics in that one alone.
My advice? Just get started. You’ll find your groove after a while, and before long you will have more ideas than you know what to do with.