Topical Relevance and SEO

Topical Relevance and SEO

If you have a website, ensuring topical relevance and SEO within your content is basically a non-negotiable. Topical relevance is what makes content high-quality, relatable and usable to the target audience that are searching on Google, and what makes content rank highly on search engines.

But how can you ensure that your content masters it, achieving topical authority?

What is the link between topical relevance and SEO?

We are going to discuss all of these things in this article, so read on to find out more.

What Is Topical Relevance?

A piece of content that has high topical relevance is content that is two things: well-optimised, and perfectly aligned with a certain topic.

Topical relevance in SEO measures how closely the content of a web page matches a certain topic- meaning how much your content aligns with what your target audience wants to see from it.

So when someone searches for something on Google, and they enter, for example ‘how to bake a chocolate cake’, your website page that includes a how to guide on baking a chocolate cake should be one of the top results when they hit search.

It is the connection between the search of the user, and the content of the website and is imperative to a good SEO strategy. A user who searches for something and finds the answer easily on your website = a satisfied user and one that is more likely to return to your site.

High topical relevance is incredibly important for web pages because it is valued more by Google, meaning it will rank higher on the search engine result pages (SERP).

So basically, topical relevance is like your SEO secret weapon, and it should be treated that way.

Is There a Difference Between Topical Relevance and Keyword Relevance?

Though they may sound similar, there is a difference between topical relevance and keyword relevance. As the word suggests, it considers the topic of the content when it is looked at by the search engine, whereas keyword relevance only looks at the words used in the content.

In saying that though, keywords are linked with topical relevance because they should be used within the content to help it establish a high topical relevance.

So basically, to ensure the highest quality content, it not only has to include relevant keywords to ensure a high ranking on Google, but the information included within the content should be relevant and useful to the searcher as well.

Why Else Is Topical Relevance Important for SEO?

As we have already discussed, topical relevance is incredibly important for ensuring that your content ranks highly on search engines and that the users have a good experience when they visit your site, as well as for boosting organic traffic to your site too. But here are a few more reasons why it’s so important for SEO:

Authority Building

We have already touched upon user satisfaction when they arrive on your website/page/blog post, whatever it is. And this is imperative for establishing your site over time too.

If you consistently create content that is topical and keyword relevant, and it ranks highly, and users find the information that they are looking for on your site, then over time it will establish you as an authoritative and trustworthy source- possibly even the go-to for that particular topic or niche.

This has even more benefits, for not only will it increase organic traffic, but Google will also begin to view it in the same way.

Long Term Success When It Comes to SEO

Topical relevance is something that you can start doing for your business content now that will only have a greater and greater impact as time goes on.

Search engines are prioritising relevant and useful content more and more, so if you focus on it now, you are positioning your content in a great place for ranking on search engines moving forward into the future. In other words, it is a very sustainable SEO strategy to begin implementing.

I Know All About Topical Relevance. But How Do I Do it?

So now that you know how important topical relevance in SEO is, how do you go about improving it on your own site? Here are some of the best ways to do it that are not complicated, but will set you on the right path:

Conduct Topical Keyword Research

If you’re familiar with doing keyword research, chances are that this will not seem too dissimilar. Topical keyword research is a way that you can make sure you are choosing the right keywords and phrases for your topic as a whole, so instead of coming up with individual keywords, you instead find broader topics that your customers will be interested in.

To do this, start by making sure you have a clear definition of what your niche is. This is incredibly important because if you are not sure what your niche is, and therefore what your target audience is, you will not effectively incorporate topical relevance into your content.

Next, work out any themes or other topics that fall within the niche, and research keywords and phrases related to each of these. Think also about search intent when deciding on your keywords- this is what users are wanting to find out when they put the keywords into a Google search, and what your content will help them with, providing your research matches these intents.

Narrow Down Your Niche

It can be hard to initiate any kind of topical authority if you are covering a wide spectrum of topics within your niche. This does make sense- it’s like people say ‘do one thing well instead of lots of things badly’, and the same pretty much applies here.

If you focus on one specific topic and narrow your content down to reflect this one thing, you have more scope to dive deeper into it, and to establish your business as authority and trustworthy around the topic.

This, in turn, establishes topical relevance on the search engines, and makes it more obvious, if you like, that your website specialises in that area, which can only mean one thing: the probability of your site ranking highly when someone searches for keywords relating to your, now small and specific, topic, increases. Yay!

 Use Long-Tail Keywords

A long-tail keyword functions just the same as a normal keyword, but instead of it just being individual words, it is a phrase, and therefore (yep, you guessed it), is more specific, and works to bring topical relevance to your website.

Because long-tail keywords are more specific, there is less competition for them, meaning your site will automatically rank higher when those words are searched for. Additionally, these keywords can attract more relevant traffic to your site, because they suit more with what people are searching for.

This does make sense- after all, if you are wanting to find a coffee shop near you in London, you are more likely to find a relevant answer if you search “coffee shops in London” than just simply searching “coffee”.

If you need a couple more examples of long-tail keywords to really grasp what I mean here, here are a few random examples:

“Outdoor events near Manchester”

“Gifts for kids under £20”

“How to sleep better”

You can even think about creating content around some long tail keywords- remember to consider user search intent as well.

Use Google as a keyword research tool

Google is actually a great tool for finding out more about what keywords have what kind of search volume. This is something you may have noticed when you search for something on Google- you are presented with a series of phrases that other people have looked for, that Google knows to be related to what you yourself have just searched.

It is giving you information on what topics have been searched for/are relevant, and you can use it to build topical relevance on your own website too based on what users are searching for.

Seen as Google is a search engine in itself too, you can rely on it as a keyword research source!


Achieving a good level of topical relevance and SEO is something that is incredibly important for establishing authority and gaining traffic as a website.

In an age where so much information is available at the click of a button, there has never been fiercer competition to get your site ranking highly and attracting readers and, hopefully, conversions into sales.

It will work in favour of your website, working with search engines to drive organic traffic and recognise it as a credible and trustworthy source- just as you want!

Though it may seem overwhelming at first to tackle all the things you need to do to establish it, there are lots of simple and easy things that you can do to start incorporating it into your website, and it, like anything, comes with practice and refinement.

Amelia Cutting

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