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Mapping is a graphical representation in 2 axes allowing to have an overview of the positioning of several products, brands or companies compared to its competitors. In strategic marketing, the 2 axes refer to 2 specific criteria to be chosen between price, brand image, notoriety, quality, importance of the offer and other criteria according to the comparison needs. The 2 chosen criteria represent the abscissa and ordinate axes of the mapping. To compare the positioning of products, simply position them in relation to each other as dots in the appropriate areas.

In general, side-by-side points mean strong competition. For example, brands or products are equally well known. This may also reflect the abundance of offers in the same industry. A high point density area may also mean that the area is highly competitive. On the other hand, an area with few or no points at all implies the absence of supply in the sector. It can also indicate the dominance of a leading brand in its market, as the other points are located further away. The interpretation of the graph varies considerably depending on the criteria chosen. Mapping is also called perceptual mapping.