There are few tactics for content marketing strategy a powerful today as the use of pillar pages for high-performing content on your site.
But knowing what makes for a quality pillar page and how to implement this power content tactic into your brand's marketing strategy can be challenging.
An Essential Question: What is a Pillar Page?
On almost every business or corporate website, one will usually find a business blog that will contain a series of articles or, in some cases, videos. When executed properly these posts will be consistent, frequent, and the topics relevant to that brand's ideal market or audience.
In addition, websites will contain various other types of written content on each webpage found on the site.
Along with the "standard" information on a site's home page and "About" page, many websites contain various other pages containing additional content such as:
- Customer Success Stories or Case Studies
- White Papers
- Resource Centers
- Product Content and Guides
Most of this written content is regularly "crawled" and indexed by Google and other search engines. This is critical for producing what are known as organic search results, or SERPS - search engine results pages.
And pillar pages significantly improve search results ranking on Google.
As one firm pointed out, pillar pages are the absolute best way to capture high volume search terms on Google aside from paid Google AdWords.
So, what is a "pillar page" anyway?
Think "Content on Steroids"
Typically, a pillar page is published as a stand-alone page on a website. But what makes it so unique and powerful in terms of driving traffic to the site is its structure.
HubSpot offers this definition of a pillar page:
"A pillar page covers all aspects of [a] topic on a single page, with room for more in-depth reporting in more detailed cluster blog posts that hyperlink back to the pillar page."
They also add that a pillar page is the basis on which a topic cluster is built. And a topic cluster is the "magic sauce" that is powered by the pillar page.
Instead of online searchers finding somewhat random results in response to a query - a blog post here, a resource page there - a website hosting a structure known as "topic cluster" anchored to a pillar page will help searchers find information on your site more easily.
It accomplishes this by organizing and linking your site's URLs together to help more pages on your site rank in Google.
Pillar Pages, Content Clusters, and Hyperlinks: Making It Work for You
While a pillar page in and of itself can be said to be a tactic, there is a strategy that guides its use. Simply creating a long page filled with keywords and information will not bring the results that a comprehensive pillar page strategy can generate.
"I'll Take Content Marketing Strategies for One Hundred, Please"
Although marketing isn't a game show, there are strategies that can help you win, nonetheless. And incorporating content clusters built around pillar pages is a sure win.
Jere's a quick overview of the steps needed for this strategy:
- Choose the broad topics you want to rank for in search results
- Create blog posts and other content based on specific keywords related to those topics
- Link these to each other and, once published, to the related pillar page
- Create pillar pages that are linked to all of the related content in their content clusters
- Update all the content pieces in a cluster - and its pillar page - when new content on that topic is published on your site
The result of this content creation, organization, and publishing strategy is to create broader search engine authority. As one source explains, in SEO, authority refers to the importance or weight given to a page relative to a given search query by Google.
The pillar page and content cluster model with its network of interrelated links, results in a "power page" on a specific topic, surrounded by blog posts related to the topic, and connected to other URLs in the cluster by hyperlinks.
To illustrate, you can picture the structure this way (shout out to HubSpot for this one):
Pillar pages are usually longer than average blog posts as they are written to cover all aspects of a specific topic. However, they are not in-depth; they are not exhaustive guides or treatises. That's what your cluster content accomplishes for you.
Essentially, you want to create a pillar page that answers general questions about your specific topic, but more detail is provided in your related cluster content.
Pillar Pages: Why Just Stop with One?
Many brands have specific keywords, or topics, which are relevant to them and their target markets, but are distinct enough to warrant their own pillar page and content clusters. So, it makes sense that a business website should host several pillar pages.
Keep in mind that each pillar page - and their associated content pieces - all work to drive relevant traffic resulting from online searches. Which means, in marketing terms, the more the merrier!
However, it is also true that the keyword research, analysis, strategy development, and content creation requires a great deal of work.
Fortunately, since not every business has the capabilities or the resources for this type of undertaking, there are alternatives such as outsourcing. In fact, one can reasonably argue that this can be a much more efficient and cost-effective approach.
Your Content Marketing Strategy Partners for Results
As we've noted here, successful content marketing must be implemented using an effective strategy to drive traffic, capturing new customers, and keeping them.
And, while the power of content marketing with pillar pages and other strategic content has been demonstrated for years, achieving your larger marketing objectives takes time.
In other words, content marketing success is not the result of a few blog posts or other content that you publish every once in a while. This is because your content needs to be viewed over a period of time before prospects will reach out to you typically.
But without a solid content marketing strategy along with effective SEO and great content, your digital marketing goals may never be met.
And that can be quite a bit to ask of a business owner or overworked marketing manager.
However, the good news is that you don't have to do it all yourself.
In fact, one of the best investments you can make with your marketing budget is to partner with an experienced digital marketing firm like BroadVision Marketing.
Click the link below to learn more about our digital marketing services so you can make an informed decision or call BroadVision Marketing at 707-799-1238.