The Importance of Keyword Clustering in SEO: Benefits, Process, and Best Practices

Cluster similar keywords in cluster.

You probably understand the importance of a target primary keyword. However, there are instances when people will search for your primary keywords using other terms other than your main keyword. Therefore, when optimizing your site, you want it to rank for the primary and other related keywords. This is what keyword clustering aims to achieve. Let’s find out more about it, why it’s important, and the right way of doing it.

What is Keyword Clustering?

Keyword clustering involves grouping similar keywords according to their search intent. For instance, someone searching for “massage parlor” may also use other keywords like “massage therapy.” There may also be other longtail keywords, such as: 

  • Body massage therapy
  • massage therapy benefits
  • massage therapy techniques

 If you only optimize for the primary keywords, ignoring their synonyms and related long-tail keywords, you will lose important traffic. Keyword clustering helps to find all the terms related to the primary keywords. It provides content and support to the pages. While it’s not aimed at optimizing several pages around a keyword cluster, it can help.

Importance of Topic Clusters

Topic clusters are an essential part of modern SEO. Here are some key benefits:

As mentioned, keyword clustering helps you rank highly for related phrases, including synonyms, longtail, and shorttail keywords. 

Improve Organic Traffic

Optimizing for all related keywords instead of a single keyword can help you increase your organic traffic.

Better Interlinking

Topic clusters can help in planning for internal linking. You can create a stronger connection between different articles.

Better User Experience

Topic clustering enables optimizing for the search intent. It makes it easier for users to find the content they are looking for, making your content more user-friendly.

How To Do Topic Clustering

Here are the steps to follow in keyword clustering:

Find Your Keyword Clusters

As we noted in our definition, keyword clustering involves grouping keywords in the same group. You can not group keywords if you don’t have them. Therefore, the first step is to determine the primary keyword that you want your site to rank for. You should then find its related keywords.

Use Google search to find keyword clusters.

 You can check out your competitor’s site to see the keywords they are ranking for. There are also several tools you can use to find primary and related keywords. These include:

  • Google Search autocomplete
  • Google related searches
  • People Also Ask section
  • Google Adwords Keyword planner
  • Semrush
  • Ahrefs
  • Moz

Once you find your keywords, you can group them in an Excel sheet. You can include details such as the search volume, keyword difficulty, and cost per click in your sheet. These metrics will help you determine which keywords are easiest to rank for or have the biggest economic value.

Cluster Your Keywords

After finding target keywords, you can group them according to how closely related they are and the search intent. Some  of the factors to consider before adding a  keyword to your cluster  include the following:

Semantic Relevance

We have already mentioned that keyword clustering requires you to segment keywords with the same search intent. Therefore, this is one of the most logical ways of clustering your keywords. If you segment keywords that aren’t similar, this will bring confusion and make it hard for the content to rank. The content will also confuse search engines on the topic of the page.

Keyword Difficulty

The keyword difficulty will affect the ability of your keyword to rank on the search engines. Some of the factors to consider when determining the keyword difficulty to rank include:

  • Authority of your site
  • How established the site is
  • Backlink profile

Ensure you already include keywords in your cluster that you can realistically rank for.

Search Volume and CPC

If you add a keyword to your cluster without a considerable seach volume, it will serve no purpose. The CPC metric can also show you the potential economic value of the keyword you add to your cluster.

Additional Note on Clustering

After finding the primary keyword for your cluster, pair it with other complementary keywords. These should be longtail keywords, lower search volume, and high CPC that could be an easy win.

 Above all, ensure all keywords in the cluster have the same search intent. Remember not all keywords you found in the group should be included in the cluster. The key thing is to choose the high-value keywords.

Ensure keyword clusters have the same search intent.

Create and Optimize a Pillar Page

Now that you have your keyword cluster, you can create pages on them. The clusters will create the roadmap for optimizing and organizing your keywords. To implement them, create a landing page that targets each of the clusters. The pillar content of the landing pages should be made of the primary keywords. Some of the measures to improve your chances of ranking well on SERPs include:

  • Explore the topic in depth. Ensure that you write long-form content that focuses on topical depth.
  • Create user-friendly pages. Ensure your pages have interactive elements such as videos, carousels, and jump links.
  • Page structure. Keep your pages organized in headers with keywords in h2, h3, etc.

Add Blog Posts For Your Keyword Clusters

You will now need to create blog posts to reinforce your pillar pages. The blog posts can focus on longtail keywords, subtopics, or even questions regarding the pillar pages. When you add more pages, these will be the cluster pages. Ensure that these pages link to the pillar page. This will increase your chances of ranking for the pillar pages. It will also increase the time that users spend on a page.

In Conclusion

With proper keyword clustering, you can gain a competitive edge in a competitive SEO landscape. You will respond to two Google requirements: Natural language processing and the search query. By following the steps in this guide, it’s possible to implement keyword clustering correctly.

Benjamin is a writer with over ten years of experience in the content writing field. He holds a Bachelor's degree in  Journalism from Strathmore University. He writes on various niches such as product reviews, self-improvement, and making mone online. You can find him curled on his couch with a self-improvement book when he is not blogging.