Just when you thought you had SEO all figured out…
We all know Google has cracked down on keyword stuffing, internal linking and much more when it comes to blog content, but it’s time to make some changes—again. Google’s new algorithms penalize you if your internal links don’t directly expand on another topic. I can already see the organization freaks (much like myself) losing it over this new algorithm, but don’t fret. Run with it by integrating pillar pages.
Lay the foundation
Pillar pages are what lays the foundation for the blog’s architecture. A pillar page is a comprehensive guide to a particular topic you want your site to rank for. While pillar pages are not in-depth coverage of the topic, they will be longer than a typical blog post because the subject is much broader. A pillar page is meant to answer the question, but a subsequent blog should be linked to give more detail. The first step in creating an effective pillar pages will contradict what you’ve been told thus far—stop thinking about keywords.
To truly understand what a pillar page is you must first understand a topic cluster. A topic cluster is an SEO strategy that focuses on topics opposed to keywords. Once you’ve identified topics you want to rank for, you can start brainstorming and generating blog posts based on specific keywords that relate to your overall topics. Using the topic cluster model, your site will become more organized for the reader, allowing them to move around to different posts learning more about one topic. Topic clusters benefit your website by improving site architecture, making it easier for Google to find related content and boosting the sites overall visibility.
Ranking in search engine results has never been more important. Creating pillar pages will speed up this process for your website, which will allow your pillar page and other blog posts to rank in search for that particular topic. All pages will rank for the same broader topic which will prevent the URL’s from competing against each other for the same long-tailed keywords. In other words, your SEO will go up, which is the whole reason you are blogging in the first place. By building pillar pages you are maximizing your chances of showing up in search engine results.
As technology continues to become a key player in communication, the web is moving towards a more conversational tone. Keywords play less of a role in your website showing up on search engines. 64 percent of searches are made up of four words or more, and 20 percent of searches are made via voice search, meaning your website needs to be optimized for long-tailed phrases as opposed to keywords. Furthermore, Google has now updated their algorithm to understand exactly what the searcher is looking for and providing content with the most accurate information possible. Stay ahead of the game—organize your content by integrating pillar pages now.