User Story Mapping

An interconnected map of the contexts where stories occur
Example map showing connected contexts in the background with one opened.

Story Locations - Key Elements


The context where one or more user stories takes place:

For digital projects, it's often intuitive to create canvas locations for each "screen" of a site or app, but if your project doesn't have "screens" that's okay! Canvas locations can represent any context where your users do things... for example, consider creating locations for each step along a customer journey, then draw connections showing the different paths that can be taken.


Each context location has text content and an optional image attachment -- which help create a more helpful and visually rich map. The image can be a design screen-shot, wireframe, or other visual element.


From the map canvas, connecting links can be dragged from several hot-spots on the edge of each location to show links or paths to other locations. This flexibility allows you to show both inter-linking network-style flow structures and hierarchical relationships.

"Linked to" and "Linked to by" tabs in the location edit panel allow quick navigation between contexts.


  • Seeing at a glance which stories happen in a location is a quick way to ramp up a team's contextual understanding. This leads to more efficient collaboration and less missed connections.

  • Even on digital projects, thinking of locations as "screens" may not always work for "behind the scenes" stories. For these stories, you can create canvas locations for other contexts like code modules or execution environments (servers, cloud systems), keeping in mind the principle that a map location is in some sense "where the action occurs."