What’s stopping you from creating your first digital product?
You might be saying it’s the tech, the payment processing, the delivery software.
We both know that’s a comfortable little lie.
Strategies like that are a Google search away. The real problem starts much sooner.
How do you know what to make your first product about?
In this article, you’ll read 13 ways to find your first idea, your tenth idea, and your 29th idea.
We’ll look at what your current audience loves, and what the wider market is looking for.
If you only apply even the first 3 methods, you’ll have more profitable ideas than you can ever make.
13 Easy Ways Bloggers Get Product Ideas [That Actually Sell]
1. Your highest converting freebie
This is the top place to look. Your readers are already telling you they love this content. It meets a felt need of theirs. And they’re willing to give up something—their private email—to get it.
If you don’t have a small paid product that goes deeper into this topic, start writing one today.
2. Facebook groups for your target audience
Be a fly on the wall. Join 3-4 groups where your target audience hangs out. You could sit around waiting for the posts to show up in your feed, but I prefer a strategic approach. Search the group for key phrases like:
- “I hate”
- “Struggle with”
- “How do you”
Boom. Those are your target audience’s pain points. Your most profitable digital product idea will solve one of them.
3. The industry leaders’ social media
Check out the most popular bloggers or influencers in your niche. They have more social media comments than they—or their team—could ever get back to. Look for reader questions or complaints. How could your digital product answer these problems?
Note: you’re not trying to spam and poach followers. You’re observing the confessional nature of social media.
There’s a learning curve with this one. But BuzzSumo essentially a hot-or-not search for keywords. You plug in your niche, and it spits out the hottest pages on that subject. Don’t copy anything word-for-word. Get an idea for what readers are looking for—and clicking on.
5. Reader survey
Don’t be lame. Sending out a survey of open-ended questions will get very few results. Possibly none. It’s not your readers’ responsibility to tell you what to create.
Instead, give your readers just a few choices. Phrase it as a “Would you rather?” to pump up the fun factor.
- Would you rather save money on groceries OR time on cooking them?
- Would you rather have a powerful morning routine OR a calming evening routine?
- Would you rather exercise every day and lose 7 pounds in a month OR never exercise and lose 3 pounds?
You can even do this via Instagram stories or a Facebook poll!
6. Website analytics
Yes, this is the most boring option on this list. But it’s true! Most websites get 80% of their traffic from 20% of their posts. Look at what drives your traffic. How can you create a small product that goes deeper into these topics?
7. Top Nine
This site rounds up your most popular Instagram posts of the past year. Their algorithm looks at like counts and comments. Everyone loves to share these in December, but you can do this at any time.
8. Reader questions
If readers are asking your advice, you’re the expert on it.
Expert is a big word. You’re imagining PHDs, awards, women in white lab coats. But being an expert just means you are the go-to person on one subject.
You have plenty of everyday experts in your own life:
- one friend you text from the fitting room
- one you call for dinner ideas,
- and one you text when something is eating your azaleas (again!).
None of these women have degrees or awards, but they are your experts. They know more than you on a specific subject and you trust their advice.
9. Pinterest analytics
Pinterest’s business analytics are a powerful tool. Once you’ve claimed your website, you can track not only the pins you make, but reader pins that point back to your site. What content are people sharing? Your most popular post is a natural springboard to your first digital product.
Quora is a magical site for market research! It’s basically Yahoo Answers without the 12-year-olds. Anyone can post a well-formulated question, and anyone else can reply back. The moderators do a great job separating the wheat from the chaff, so low-quality posts don’t stick around.
Some bloggers use Quora to drive traffic back to their blogs, but you can harness it for your eBook or course idea.
It’s a large group of people saying, “I have a question that’s bugging me so badly, I need to get on the Internet and ask someone about it.”
Your digital product could be the perfect solution to these troublesome questions.
11. Google search
Ok, before you close this tab, let me explain. I’m not shrugging you off these late in the article with a gruff “Just google it!”
Instead, I want to highlight 3 ways the Google bots do the work for you.
- Autocomplete gives more specific ideas
- “People also ask” shows related topics
- The featured snippet shows the most Google-friendly result
Udemy is a course marketplace (but I don’t recommend selling on it). You can search for what is already selling in your niche.
Listen, you’re not going to invent the iPhone on your first try. Look at what courses already exist. What gap in the market will your digital course fill?
13. Hate mail
This one’s a little out there. But bear with me, sister.
What gets you the nasty comments?
What brings out the naysayers?
That’s your secret skill. And the size of the reader’s reaction is equal to her pain. If it didn’t strike a nerve that you’re:
- cooking dinner 6 nights a week,
- working out regularly with 4 kids
- waking up at 5 a.m. on the weekends
then she wouldn’t have fired off an angry Instagram comment.
As strange as it sounds, that’s a reader crying out for your product. You have a skill she needs. It hurts her that she can’t do the thing. And hurting people hurt people.
So bravely make your course or write your eBook. We need less hurt in this world.
The world needs your product
Throughout this article we saw again and again. Your readers are in pain. They look to you on certain subjects.
The wider market has gaps. And people are falling through them too.