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Keyword mapping for SEO – how to do it in 2022

Keyword mapping
Get top tips on keyword mapping for SEO in 2022. From how to create a keyword map to the best SEO tools, we’ve got it covered.

We know you’re a fan of quality website content – you’re on this page, after all! But even the juiciest, most valuable content will struggle to get to the top positions on Google without effective keyword mapping for SEO. 

 

Read on to discover how to make keyword mapping work for your business.

This blog will help you to: 

  • Get to grips with what keyword mapping is
  • Understand why it’s important for your business
  • Choose the right keyword and SEO tools for you and your team
  • Create a keyword map to boost your SEO strategy/content strategy

What is keyword mapping?

Keyword mapping refers to the activities and strategy involved in researching, targeting and adding keywords to your website content.

Why is keyword mapping important?

1. It gives your SEO strategy direction

SEO is a complex beast. Mapping your keywords gives you a centralised portal for all your activities. This helps you track SERPS and identify opportunities to improve rankings.

2. It boosts your content marketing activities

Your keyword map gives you excellent insights into what content is working and vice versa. It helps you analyse campaign performance and discover future lead generation and content marketing opportunities. 

3. You avoid keyword cannibalisation

Google wants to understand the search intent of each page, so it’s important to guard against ‘keyword cannibalisation’, or targeting the same words on multiple pages. 

What are the best keyword mapping and SEO tools for 2022 and beyond?

Ahrefs

Ahrefs is a firm favourite among SEOs and content marketers alike. It’s ideal for beginners and experienced users and there’s even a freemium version. 

 

Keyword mapping tools include: 

  • Keyword research and tracking 
  • SEO auditing  
  • Rank tracking 
  • Competitor research tools (keyword and content)

BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo’s keyword tool is a content marketer’s dream. It’s specifically designed to give you a complete understanding of your organic SEO performance right across your site – and it’s free! 

 

Keyword mapping tools include: 

  • Keyword research and tracking 
  • Rank tracking
  • Suggested questions to answer for your keywords 
  • Analysis of high-performing content from competitors/other businesses for specific keywords

SEMRush

SEMRush is another popular and effective keyword mapping and SEO tool for users of all levels. There isn’t a free version available but the paid plans cover a lot of ground including local SEO, PPC, link building and website monetisation. 

 

Keyword mapping tools include: 

  • Keyword research
  • Site audit
  • Keyword optimization 
  • Rank tracking
  • Site comparison with competitors to identify keyword gaps

How do I create a keyword map?

The best way to start managing this important part of your growth strategy is to create a spreadsheet or keyword map. Your keyword map can be built into your overall SEO audit and updated as your brand, audience engagement and strategy evolve.  

Find your top-performing pages using Google Analytics.

  • Access the data via Search Behaviour -> Site Content -> Landing Pages. Unless your site is very new it’s best to use a whole year for your date range to take any seasonal peaks and troughs into account 
  • Add an audience segment for Organic Traffic 
  • Export the report for each goal (collate the data if you are including more than one goal)
  • Format the doc so you’re viewing Pages, Sessions, Conversions and Conversion Rates
  • Remove any pages that don’t need to rank such as testimonials and less commercially-focused blogs.
  • Select a handful of pages you want to prioritise ranking for. Be realistic about your goals and choose a number that makes sense to your business.

Identify the main keyword for each page

You will probably already have a pretty good idea of what your main keyword is for each page. If you’re unsure or want to check, the tools we mentioned above can help with this, as can Google Search Console and your PPC data. 

Run each keyword through the keyword planner on your chosen tools and see how many average monthly searches they get. Organise your keywords by any filters that make sense to you; products, services etc. Then assign a level of priority to each. Most of your keywords should be long-tail search terms (three or more words). These are more specific, are less competitive and generally have higher conversion rates. 

Build up your keyword variations

Your keyword mapping and SEO tools will also come in handy here as will your search terms report on Google Ads.

 

Identify around 8-12 keyword variations for each page. Some are going to be harder to target than others so use your knowledge of the market to pick a selection that is a good balance of difficulty, search volume and user intent. Remember you want Google to understand the key focus of your page as soon as it crawls it. 

 

Identity any LSI keywords (related terms) and add those together on your sheet. 

Create your keyword map

With your keyword map in place, you can track your performance, fill content and keyword gaps, discover internal linking opportunities, keep tabs on your competitors and much more. If you’d like to discover the trends that are shaping content marketing right now, download our free report on the state of content creation in 2022

 

And if you want to find out how Contentoo’s team of freelance content experts can help you drive more high-quality traffic to your site, book a free demo today