This post originally appeared on tBL member Joshua Lyon's blog Joshua Lyons Marketing Blog and is republished with permission. Find out how to syndicate your content with theBrokerList.//?#
Pillar content, also known as pillar pages and pillar posts, are pieces of content in your website that directly relate to other pages or posts. This type of content can help boost your search result rankings, making it a great SEO tactic. This blog post will explain why pillar content is important and why you should create it. For the purpose of this post, we will focus on the idea of using a blog post as your pillar content. But keep in mind that this can all be done on a website that doesn’t have a blog. The same principles apply.
What is it?
To understand pillar content, think of a spider web. In a spider web, there are many strands of thread that link to the very center of the web. The center of the web is the most important section. All strands of thread help support the center. Pillar content works in the same way. There will be many pieces of blog content created around a central idea. But they will all link to a primary piece of content that functions as the foundation. We would call this network of related content a “content cluster.”
In our company blog, we have many posts that talk about SEO. Imagine each piece of content as being part of an SEO spider web. This is our “SEO” content cluster. We can have another grouping of posts that talk about website development. That’s our “website development” content cluster. At the very center of the spider web (content cluster) is the pillar content/post. This post functions as the foundation of the entire content cluster. It explains the cluster topic very generally while also being rather thorough. Then, each other blog post in the content cluster should hyperlink back to the pillar post. In the end, there will be many different posts in the content cluster that all link to that one primary post. As an example, this blog post is talking about pillar content. Pillar content is extremely important for SEO. Our pillar post for SEO is a post called “What is SEO And Why Does it Matter?” That’s the pillar content for our SEO content cluster. If you read our blog posts regularly, you will notice many SEO related posts linking to that one post.
Why Should You Create Pillar Content?
Back in 2017, Google changed its algorithm… again. Pillar content suddenly became very relevant at that time, for SEO. Pillar content helps benefit your website’s search result ranking. When one post in the cluster does well, Google will raise your rankings. As you create more strands of content, and they link to your pillar post, then your rankings will continue to improve. The goal is for Google to see your pillar content as the authority for the cluster’s topic. The more relevant content you have, and the more it links to your pillar post, the better.
How do You Create a Pillar Post?
To successfully practice use a pillar content strategy, you need to find a good topic for your pillar content piece. Choose a topic that is relatively complex so you can use several blog posts to explain it. When you do this, you will have many different posts to contribute to your content cluster.
Your pillar post should not go too deep into the nitty-gritty details of the topic. This will make it easier for you to build cluster content off of the general pillar post. For example, our pillar post about SEO has subheadings that mention on-site and off-site SEO. We then published a blog post that goes into great detail about on-site and off-site SEO. To continue building the cluster, we wrote a few additional blog posts with subjects related to SEO. This blog post, about pillar content, is now our most recent addition supporting (linking to) our SEO pillar post.
Backlinks and Anchor Text
You create a pillar by linking one post to another. Backlinks are when a website page links to another page. Throughout some of our blog posts, you will notice they each have at least one link to another post. Going back to the example of our SEO cluster, each post has a backlink to at least one related blog post. This helps strengthen the content cluster. You can also go back and edit your pillar post to include backlinks to your cluster posts.
Things to Remember
The posts in your cluster should provide information on different aspects of your topic. They should not be the same blog post that is just reworded. You can come up with related cluster topics by thinking about the questions people could ask, after reading your pillar post. What could be explained in greater detail? Is there something else you didn’t mention in your pillar post that would be helpful for your readers? As you do this, you can come up with topics that would make sense for you to write about. You can also use keyword research tools for SEO. These will give you insight on what people are searching in Google, related to your topic. Either of these methods will help you identify good topics to write about. Keep your content interesting. This will help increase your website traffic and will make them more likely to convert into leads, customers and clients.
We hope this blog post helps you get started on publishing pillar content. This can be a rather difficult concept to grasp. If you have questions, feel free to let us know. You can use the contact form below to reach out to us.