Keywords distribution along web content structure

This is not an article about keyword finding, keyword density or keyword stuffing. None of those between millions 'how to find the magic keywords bringing all the organic traffic to you'. I assume you did your keyword research and you have a nice bunch of them classified the way you like most. What is next? Keyword distribution it is the subject of this post.

The web content structure thing

Who determines the structure of the content in a website? Designers, programmers, usability experts, copywriters, marketing guys, the nephew of the owner of the company or, in the worst of the cases, all together.

I am not saying that SEO consultant should be the only one doing it because we need some consensus here and the client is who knows better his company, business model, products and market to target but you are the first analysing it as the one in charge for distributing keywords along the website structure so soon you will feel the clear necessity to put some order in this chaos.

If you did the keyword search properly you will have tons of them: top, secondary, long tail keywords, generic or specific ones, combinations (verb + adjective + product + location) in the attempt to capture all the relevant traffic.

Well, it depends in the type of web (corporative, ecommerce…) but a quick look at the content structure will make some of the most typical problems to appear:

  • Not content enough to allocate the biggest amount of keywords or at east the more important ones
  • Poor diversity in content to place the maximum number of variations due to single categorization structure
  • No room for very generic and highly competitive keywords

Some possible solutions.

Poor content in website

Lack of content is the problem in SEO projects you will find more often. If you try to place all the required keywords in such a few content the writing style won't be natural and it will seem you are trying to stuff the text with keywords. Ugly effect.

Sometimes the problem is not quantity but quality, so badly written texts that optimise content is a nightmare and you have to end up rewriting big part of it.

Obvious: add content.

Single category to organise products or services

How users search, game console brand and then accessory type or the other way around? Why not both? Quite sure you will find which way is the preferable in traffic volume terms but no need to reject any possible visit coming from secondary or more specific keywords.

Consider multi categories website structure, this will create more room for variations and combinations for sure.

Highly competitive keywords

A little piece of the big pie is a big piece for me and I don't want to miss it. Imagine your business does not want directly compete for very generic keywords, 'buy phone', because it requires a much bigger investment due to very hard competition and your customer is focused on a segment selling touch phone, PDA phone and smartphones in example.

Does it mean you have to forget about those generic keywords and their traffic? Definitely no but where can they fit and keep text natural?

Some content areas people usually not paying to much attention as 'About' and 'FAQ' pages in example. First, these more generic words can help define better what the web is about and second they represent a valuable resource for internal linking strategy don't you think?

How I like to do keywords in structure

It would be nice one a tool to render the whole web structure just typing the domain URL with filters like 'skip external links', show/hide nofollowed, javascript or image links and spreadsheet file export but don't know any remotely close to it (do you? please drop a note) so no way other than manually write it.

Anyway, you have to go deep into the site to know it really well, even better than de client so you can write down structure while navigating it. Few extra work saving your life latter.

Here it is a sample of a spreadsheet with vertical structure proposal and some more columns to make it easy.

Keyword distribution along website structure
Download this keyword distribution spreadsheet, use as much as you want.

This way whole structure is always at a glance, a global vision helping you distributing better the keywords. Two columns to place the most important ones and secondary by area, section or page, go as deep as required.

Once this task is finished some more columns can be added for URL definition, <title>, <meta-description>, <h1> or any other on page element to optimise. Again, that helps you having in mind the whole site map, the keywords nicely distributed so writing those elements is easy and the result gains in quality.

Some conclusions

Take time to rethink the whole structure and evaluate if it serves perfectly your SEO purposes but always in a natural way, no overdoses.

Ask the rest of the professionals involved in project to share their opinion about the new structure you purpose, four eyes see more than two.

Quite sure you will have to convince the client to add more content or increase the budget to write yourself or hire the service of a copywriter. Advice the client about this possibility from the very beginning not to scare him asking for more money once the thing started.

Ask as soon as possible the developers if the platform used is flexible enough to change the structure or add more parts to it. Sometimes CMSs are so bad that this simple question represents a dead end.

Opinions? Would you like to share your procedure?

Aug 03, 2009
Written by:
Filed under: Content

Oct 22, 2010
Posted by:
Mosman #1

awesome spreadsheet - used it and it was great thanks

Jan 20, 2011

Really great spreadsheet; I'm surprised there's not more comments because this was a great little read. The first paragraph is the funniest. Perhaps we should get our clients to read it? HAHA. Thanks.

Jan 20, 2011
Posted by:
Ani Lopez #3

Thanks Zacchaeus for your comment, glad you find the spreadsheet useful.

This site is got thin traffic as I don't write about latest business hot topics and similar ways to gain more visits so few comments here.

Feb 08, 2011
Posted by:
Jose Uzcategui #4

Thanks for the spreadsheet Ani. I've used it a bunch of times, it's great, and now it's on my SEO Tools I Frequently Use post.


Feb 08, 2011
Posted by:
Jose Uzcategui #5

Ah, no HTML supported, here's the link to the post - feel free to merge my two comments :)


Sep 07, 2011
Posted by:
Seouragon #6

Very nice template for keyword distribution, perfect to organize your keywords from page to sub-pages in a visible and organize manner.

Jul 13, 2012
Posted by:
Marcelo #7

Awesome! I have been looking for this to set my keywords so I can implement some content soiling, thank you.

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