No matter how experienced an SEO writer you are, how many articles, product descriptions, landing pages or category pages you’ve written in your career, we’ve all faced the dreaded writer’s block.
From staring at a blank page for what feels like hours on end, waiting for inspiration to strike for that first line, to your mind going completely blank mid-sentence as you try to think of the right word – it can be a real pain and massively time-consuming too.
Suffering from writer’s block, especially if there is a deadline looming, can feel extremely daunting. But, fear not, and take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. We’ve created this list of 7 ways to beat your SEO writer’s block and nail your next piece of eCommerce content!
1. Conduct Keyword Research
First of all, if you have a broad idea for a topic to write about, but aren’t entirely sure which direction to go with it, keyword research is the key. As a fundamental tool for any SEO, keyword research helps you to understand what information and products your target customers are searching for. This can help shape your article to become exactly what they need, putting you in a better position for people to visit your site.
You’ll want to start with the primary keyword, or phrase, you’re targeting in your article and then search for any related phrases and questions for your secondary keywords that you can answer within the piece. Where your primary keyword will be reflected in the title of the piece, the secondary keywords will create the sections and h2/h3 headers.
Side note: We’d also recommend choosing keywords that don’t have hundreds of thousands of searches a month. Because chances are, your article won’t appear in the SERPs. Instead, target longer-tail keywords with fewer searches a month for a higher chance of being found by customers looking for something specific.
2. Create a Brief
Staring at a completely blank page can be scary, and you’ll likely be left wondering how to actually start the article. So, once you have your primary and secondary keywords in mind, we suggest creating a clear and concise content brief to avoid the plague of writer’s block.
If you work with a content strategist or SEO, they may have already written a brief for you to follow. But, if you’re a freelancer or have only been given a topic to write about, we strongly suggest creating your own brief full of the information you need to write the article.
Here are some of the things to include in the content brief to help:
- The topic of the article
- The goal of the piece, whether it’s to generate sales or lead customers to another part of the website.
- Primary keywords.
- Secondary keywords.
- Internal links to include to other articles, products and relevant pages.
- CTA (call to action) to include – what do you want the reader to do after the article?
- Target word count.
3. Read Articles From Your Competition
If, after creating the brief and noting down the keywords, you’re still finding yourself struggling for inspiration, take a look at other articles from your main competitors. It’s also worth searching for your primary keyword and seeing what content is ranking well and why. This will give you a good idea of how best to layout your article and see any missing gaps that you could include to give your piece that extra boost.
Reading is always a great source of inspiration and information. But, remember, never outright plagiarise a piece. Not only is this illegal, but search engines will quickly detect this and penalise your site.
4. Create a Rough Structure
By creating a rough structure of your article, you’ll only be setting yourself up for success. Map out the sections you want to include, any bullet points of information for those sections, the order in which they should go and the titles for each header. When you have the bare bones of the piece, filling the gaps and fleshing it out will become a lot simpler.
5. Take a Break
Sometimes, even if you have all the information and a solid writing plan/structure, you can still find yourself feeling slow and sluggish and unmotivated to write. If this is happening, then it’s probably time for a well-deserved break.
Either make or grab a coffee, go for a quick walk, chat with your co-workers or, if you work from home, you can always take a shower, go for a short 20-minute nap or get some household chores done. When you come back to your desk, you’ll be feeling refreshed and ready to write.
6. Change Your Location
Working in the same spot day in and day out can very quickly lead to you feeling like you’re in a rut. How can you be expected to keep the inspiration flowing if you’re just looking at the same 4 walls every day? Changing your location can be a great opportunity to refresh your mind, and you may be surprised at how much more you can get done.
Whether it’s a small change such as moving to a different room in the office or at home or going to a coffee shop or gym/leisure centre to get some work done in a comfortable environment where food and drinks can be delivered to your table, a change in location can easily brighten your spirits and help ease your mind enough to finish that tricky sentence.
7. Write Something Else
There’s nothing wrong with leaving your current article to go and write something else instead. Whether it’s someone needing a social media post written up or a quick meta description, or even if someone needs you to proofread something, moving away from your bigger project can help you to take a step back, reignite those creative juices and then come back with fresh eyes.