Pillar pages: more traffic thanks to content clusters

How to create pillar pages and why your website benefits from them

Claudia Höckner-Pernkopf | © punkt & komma
Claudia Höckner-Pernkopf

Is your website still built on sand? Or do you prefer to rely on stable content pillars that give your digital home a solid foundation?

More and more online marketers are using so-called pillar pages to build and expand their web content. The goal: strong link structures, increased traffic, lead generation, topic leadership and more. What exactly are these high-performing pages all about, and what should you keep in mind when creating them? We’ll tell you ...

What is a pillar page?

First things first: A pillar page is a page on your website that is dedicated to a specific topic – in its entirety. The aim is to provide all significant information on this topic on one page. The informational content is supplemented by links to relevant pages and articles.

To keep track of all the information, the content and links on the pillar page are clustered into meaningful content units, so-called pillars. Would you like an example? With “Wine 101 – Beginner’s Guide to Wine”, Winefolly has created a simple but clear pillar page that provides all the information for budding sommeliers (we’ll tell you what we find particularly cool about this page).

By the way, the word pillar can also be used to describe a person or thing that reliably provides essential support for something. The pillars or content clusters thus function as a kind of supporting content for your website. 

But why do online marketers attribute so much importance to these pillar pages? To find out, we need to take a look at how a pillar page is structured – and what impact it has on your web performance.

Sructure and length

Pillar page

The example of Winefolly makes one thing quite obvious: a comprehensive treatment of a topic needs time, know-how – and of course enough space. Depending on the topic, the texts on the pillar pages can be between 1,000 and 5,000 words long.

But don’t worry! Not all questions and content on your topic need to be discussed in detail on the pillar page itself. After all, that’s what the links are for. By providing relevant links, you not only create immense added value for your users but also build a strong internal link structure.

Ideally, you have enough relevant content on your site (in the form of content pages, blog posts or online magazine articles) to answer all the important questions about your topic. We think Winefolly has done a masterful job of this. Each of the listed links leads to an article relevant to the topic within their own website – and thus strengthens the internal link structure.

Content cluster

A pillar page is particularly helpful if there are enough pages and articles on your site that can be grouped into one or more clusters. How you structure your texts and links into meaningful units is, of course, up to you. After all, you are an expert in your field and know what makes your target group and your personas tick.

What you should keep in mind when writing the text

However, to get the most out of your pillar page in terms of online performance, you should keep the following in mind when creating it:

  1. Short, concise and meaningful sentences: What applies to web copy in general also applies to writing for pillar pages.
  2. Work with relevant user questions, especially for the headlines of your content clusters!
  3. Make sure that your texts and headlines are SEO-optimised!
  4. Use short and competitive keywords in your headlines and also in the title of your pillar page!
  5. Structure comes before creativity: A meaningful title, description and H-tags that deliver what they promise are better than flowery metaphors.
  6. Create an overview – this also applies to the content of the pillar page. In addition to headlines and sublines, bullet points and prominent CTAs also help structure the text.

Pillar pages: the benefits

The equation is simple: the more relevant the content – the better the visibility (given the page is SEO-optimised). But that’s not all that pillar pages have to offer.

The advantages in a nutshell:

  • Strong page and link structure: Basing your entire website on pillar pages and content clusters is particularly advisable if there is already a lot of content on your site. Clustering this content and making it available on separate pages not only creates order but also clarifies the view of essential content focal points. The result: a logical and comprehensible website structure – both for users and search engines.
  • More visibility and improved rankings: The easier the search engine can crawl and understand the content on your page, the higher the probability of ranking for high-volume search terms. Pillar pages, with their numerous sub-topics, clear clusters and trustworthy links, offer both topic breadth and depth – exactly what search engines appreciate!
  • Good for your brand image: Expertise, authority and trustworthiness – the so-called EAT index is also an important ranking factor that you can fully take advantage of with the content you provide. And it allows you to strengthen your brand image at the same time. Because: Nothing beats credibility! 
  • More engagement: With the help of clear clusters and links, you are giving users the opportunity to stay on your site longer. Ideally, this leads to more newsletter subscriptions, purchases and generally: more engagement. And that in turn has a positive effect on your SEO visibility. That’s a win-win-win in our book!
  • Strong links: Still underestimated, internal links show how your content is connected and let search engines understand your content better.
  • Lead generation: The more time users spend on your site, the more opportunities there are to convince them of you and your company. The result: more leads coming from your website!

You can build on these pillars!

Pillar pages are a wonderful way to provide your users with comprehensive information on a topic and to make existing content available in the form of content clusters. Long copy pages help to increase the authority of your website, increase visitor engagement and improve your website’s search engine rankings.

Support from the pros

Everything clear on the subject of pillar pages? Then knuckle down and start stirring the mortar. Once you have built pillar after pillar, you will see: It pays off!

If you need support in terms of conception, strategy or copywriting for your content pillars – feel free to contact our experts in pillar building (and web copywriting 😉)!

Our final advice ...

As you probably know, we are fans of data-based content creation. That means: As beautiful as your pillar page looks – the most important thing is that it performs well. So don’t forget to monitor your page regularly.

Because as Winston Churchill once said ...

„However beautiful a strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.“

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