When planning your content strategy and optimizing your website, keywords play a huge role.
To plan proper keyword research accordingly, we must consider the users’ search intent, current trends, queries, and terms to rank effectively on search engines.
In that regard, keyword mapping is one of the most crucial parts of the keyword research process. It helps you identify keywords for your niche and how best to use them.
Understanding keyword mapping and its benefits will help you have a website that is structured for successful results. This article will look at all these and how to do keyword mapping.
What is Keyword Mapping?
The primary purpose of keyword mapping for your website is to create a structured approach to your on-page optimization, content strategy planning, internal linking, and efficiently evaluating the performance of your pages.
Keyword mapping is the process of assigning keywords relevant to your website’s web pages. These keywords are chosen after careful research and are associated with the intent of creating a logical structure for the website.
It is also helpful when you need to group semantic keywords on your website.
Benefits of Keyword Mapping
When you create blogs for your website, don’t expect that you just start writing a blog post based on your niche and expect that post to rank in SERPs and gain more traffic.
Provides an Organized Site Structure
The search engines need to understand which pages of your website are pillar content and the pages associated with the cluster content.
Pillar content is the main topics that broadly cover the content you present, whereas cluster content is the sub-pages specializing in separate sections of the pillar content.
A keyword map will help you form a semantic relationship between the pillar content and cluster contents.
Prevents Creation of Duplicate Content
The best SEO practice is to have one keyword per page. Multiple keywords compete for the same keyword, which leads to keyword cannibalization.
Search engines such as Google will not understand which content should rank higher. Sometimes, this might make the content you did not intend to rank higher than the duplicate content.
To avoid this, organizing your keywords and optimizing them across your website will help you assign unique keywords.
Helps in Content Creation
Having a clear overview of content creation makes it easier for you to focus on content creation.
Be it an in-house or external team working on your content marketing strategies, a keyword map will help you communicate your requirements to your teams.
Understand the purpose of your web pages to focus on the primary and secondary keywords and any article’s overall tone.
Identify Internal Linking Opportunities
Understanding the relationship between all the pages makes it easier to interlink the pillar content with the cluster content.
A proper internal links structure means that viewers of one page can confidently navigate to another page of equal or better relevance, based on the structure of your internal linking based on keywords that are relevant to your site, thus enhancing the user experience and maintaining flow within your domain.
Internal linking via keyword mapping means that the search engine is better able to crawl and index new pages.
Evaluate Search Intent
Effective keyword mapping will help you develop a better campaign for your target audience.
On your website, for existing pages, it is easier to understand the search intent for the organic traffic when you perform keyword mapping.
Understanding the user intent and how they arrived at your page will help you create and optimize the content to send the user on the conversion path.
Fill Content Gaps
When you focus on a niche and create content around that, it is essential to cover all the relevant keywords that register as high volume.
It is easy to miss out on the opportunities and the organic traffic these keywords can bring to your site. This can be avoided when you have a content map.
It is also easy to compare with competitor keywords and fill the holes in your content.
Creating a keyword map that gives you an organized site representation allows you to easily report the targeted keywords and their rankings.
You can keep track of the keywords and your efforts in making them rank higher. This will help you in understanding and developing a clear overview of your content.
Steps For Keyword Mapping Process
1. Create Your Keyword Mapping Document
The first step in creating a keyword map is to create a spreadsheet that contains all the necessary details for a keyword map, which we’ll show below. This spreadsheet you will share with team members for easy collaboration on your content creation.
The following are the headings that you need to create in the spreadsheet:
- Page Title – This is the keyword-rich title given to your web page.
- URL – The address of the page after publishing it online.
- Primary Keyword – The main keyword used on your web page.
- Secondary Keywords – These are the secondary or supporting keywords that also include the semantic version of the primary keyword.
- Page Summary – This is a brief note about your page and what it is about.
Keyword mapping need not only be performed for pages that you are just creating. You can also generate keyword maps for the website that is already existing.
2. Keyword Research and Analysis
Once you have created the keyword mapping document spreadsheet, you are all set to jump into the process. The next step is to perform keyword research and analysis.
Start with a seed keyword that is important for your niche. Focusing on that one keyword is necessary for creating your keyword map.
For an existing website, you can use Google Search Console to look for keywords already ranking well for your website.
Starting from the seed keywords, list out relevant keywords to your niche. After that, decide which keywords are similar enough to end up on the same page.
3. Sort Keywords Based on the Search Intent
Once you have listed all the focus keywords in your keyword mapping document, you need to look for the search intent.
Before that, manually look for duplicate keywords that might have crept into the document. Also, get rid of keywords with smaller search volumes.
Understand the intent behind all the keywords you have listed. The search intent behind the keywords is divided into main categories, NITC:
- Navigational Intent – The visitor is looking for a specific website or page.
- Informational Intent – The visitor is looking for detailed information.
- Transactional Intent – The visitor wants to buy a product from the website.
- Commercial Intent – The visitor wants to research before purchasing a product.
Understanding the intent behind the search will help you prioritize specific keywords over others and focus on them for your content strategy.
4. Categorize the Keywords
After getting the user intent sorted, you can now start to group keywords based on relevance. This step will ensure that all your keywords are organized and give you a rough idea of the structure of your website.
If you clearly understand your niche, you can create general pillar and cluster content from your target keywords.
Your website might have similar keywords that can be grouped into a single category. There are many ways you can group them on your website.
It does not end just with categorizing your keywords. You need to have a proposed URL for pages yet to be created. For the existing page, use the live slug in the URL section of your keyword mapping document.
Ensure that the proposed URL contains the keyword for pages that are not yet created. Also, keep in mind that this can permanently be altered.
5. Analyze for Opportunities
Now that we have the document with the mapped keywords. It is time to find the opportunities revealed through the process.
Looking for keyword opportunities with the highest ROI will help convince your stakeholders to take those paths for your business.
For instance, if you own a product review website and specific keywords can help you bring more commercial intent users, you need to focus on them more.
Look for opportunities that align with your business goals and prioritize them. Using the keyword map, you just need to pick the keywords that bring your desired results.
6. Create Content and Publish
After finally creating your keyword map, all you need to do is to create content based on the focus keyword and publish them on your website.
Use the URL and primary and secondary keywords from the keyword map and start with creating the content.
Optimize your web page for the focus keyword using the keyword mapping document. Include the keyword variations on alt tags, meta description, and meta title.
Look out for opportunities to internally text your other pages. Choose the correct anchor text and link it with your website’s relevant pages.
7. Update the Keyword Map Regularly
It is necessary to understand that the process of keyword mapping never stops. It is an iterative process where you must keep updating the spreadsheet.
You need to research new keywords every month and add them to your document. You also need to look into the document to ensure that you do not create duplicate content for your website.
It also helps you keep track of relevant topics and keywords that might be used today. To keep up with the trend and create content based on that, you must regularly update your keyword map.
Keyword mapping is one of the best ways to keep track of your pages and the focus keyword associated with them. This comes with many benefits. One among them is that it offers you a logical flow for your website and improves the user experience. While creating a keyword mapping document is time-consuming, it is well worth the time. The critical thing to ensure is that the keyword mapping should never end. You must constantly update your keyword mapping document as you explore new keywords for your website and create new content based on the users’ search intent, current trends, queries, and terms to rank effectively on search engines.