What is a content map?
A content map is a marketing strategy that uses a document to assemble a list of topics and subsections that can be used to structure a website’s information.
If you have a ton of content ideas, it can become overwhelming to manage how you should work through those articles and what other areas you should cover in order to create authority in your niche. Ideally, using relevant content will help a publisher (or writer) cover a topic thoroughly and eventually rank for a specific keyphrase organically.
Using your content ideas and relevant topics can help create a content map that will create a better customer experience. Content maps are generally used as a plan to enrich a customer’s journey and to lend topical authority to the main idea with other pieces of content. It allows for a better experience by users, as well as providing more value to them than they would otherwise get from consuming one random piece of information.
An effective way to create this type of plan is by creating an overarching document where all relevant information can be stored in an organized manner so that no vital data will be lost or forgotten about when moving forward with the content building.
What is content building?
Content building is the process of creating, editing, and managing content. It includes aspects such as writing, research, and designing.
The process of content building itself requires a good writer to outline the key points of their article. Providing full coverage of a topic will ensure that a user is properly informed. Ideally, publishers (writers) will want to make sure that they are creating long-form content.
Long-form content is an article that offers a lot of information and/or great depth of information on a given topic. The minimum length should range anywhere between 700 and 2,000 words.
Some content is built towards a specific business goal, like getting a user to purchase something; while other content is geared toward keeping users engaged by traveling through a series of web pages.
Mapping content to goals
Mapping content to goals is a way of structuring and organizing your content in such a way that it helps the reader achieve specific goals.
Let’s say a company goal is to get a user to make a purchase; using a content map strategy, many pages can lead the user back towards an internally linked sales page. Let’s say, you are selling an e-course, your content map should have several informational articles pointing back towards your sales page where a user can purchase the e-course.
Mapping your topics with the objective of achieving goals is one of many methods used by affiliate website owners.
Mapping content for continued engagement
Mapping content for continued engagement is a technique used by marketers to help users continue their journey beyond the current page of interest.
This mapping can take many forms, such as a list of steps, or a table of contents. Mapping content for continued engagement is sometimes used to keep the user on the website for better metrics and monetization opportunities.
A good example of mapping content for continued engagement would be as follows.You create a content map on the broad topic of baking cakes. Several articles about baking, such as “baking chocolate cake”, “baking a red velvet cake”, “baking a Dominican cake”, can link interchangeably to each other, and also towards the broad topic page “baking cakes”.
This content map strategy will help keep engagement high, as there is high relevance to the originally searched topic.
How do you create a content map?
Creating a content map helps align customer needs and challenges to relevant, compelling content.
This process can be done by using any tool that allows for diagramming and mind mapping. One such tool is OmniGraffle which makes it easy to create diagrams of different types of maps or keep track of information for your business. It is also possible to just draw one out, or use a simple whiteboard tool to brainstorm your topic and sub-topic ideas for a good strategy.
Your first content map should be a vertical niche topic, with relevant sub-topics.
The benefits of Content Mapping
Content mapping is a tool that helps you understand your customer and how they interact with your website. It can help you audit and catalog existing content. A content map will avoid redundant writing that may appear on the site, providing a better experience for customers.
Content mapping is a process in which you identify the different areas of your content and map out a plan for how to improve them. It’s a great idea to do this with every piece of content that you create.
Content strategy map vs content matrix?
A content strategy map is a simple chart that illustrates the relationship between the different types of content. Some content strategies can focus on the customer journey stage, if there is a sales goal. while other content types may also be used, like a website that is comprised of 100% informational content for educational purposes.
A content matrix, on the other hand, shows how much time should be allotted to the development of each topic vertical. Similar to how project managers schedule critical tasks, a content matrix helps provide a timeline for publishing.
The way the map is designed depends on the type of content the publisher (or writer) plans on distributing.
What are different types of maps?
A content map is a visual representation of the content that will be created for a website.
It can help maintain structure and provide clarity among different types of content. The buyer’s journey typically includes four phases: awareness, consideration, purchase decision, and retention or referral stage.
The awareness phase occurs before any interaction with the company and focuses on informational content.
The purchase decision phase contains marketing-related information to help build trust in a brand as well as push consumers towards making a purchase from that company.
The consideration phase is the most important and includes content that helps persuade consumers to make a purchase decision.
Finally, the retention or referral stage focuses on ways to help retain customers and provide them with valuable information they may need in the future.
This strategy is often used when taking a customer through the buying process.
What should maps include?
Maps should be targeted to capture most users from search engines. If you already have a website online and obtaining traffic, there are probably areas on your website that contain content gaps that can be improved with a content map strategy.
Content maps should include a general topic, for example Coconut Oil
and subtopics that help lend authority to the main topic:
- Can coconut oil be used for hair?
- Can coconut oil be used for skin?
- Coconut oil versus coconut water
- Best uses for coconut oil
- Where does coconut oil come from?
- Best coconut oil brand and so on.
For a fair spread of content coverage, it would be ideal if you started at ten sub-topics for each main topic.
If you already have a website with several articles published that cover many topics, you can improve the authority of your main content by running a content audit to see where there is room for improvement.