On this episode of 'Inbound & Down,' co-hosts Jon Sasala and Danielle Esposito explain how to map a 10x pillar page, outlining its necessary steps and sharing an example.
If you've listened to other episodes of 'Inbound & Down,' our love and adoration of pillar pages is blatantly obvious. If you're unfamiliar with these SEO essentials, consider the following some the CliffsNotes version. (And listen to Episode 12: SEO Your Marketing Strategy with Topic Clusters.) A pillar is the central page a specific topic cluster is built around, covering all aspects of a single topic. It's supported by blog posts about similar topics.
The goal of a pillar page is to rank for the specific topic it's about, so it must be comprehensive, as well as valuable. This is what "10x" means. Remember: You're trying to outrank those on the first SERP (search engine result pages), so what you create has to be truly exceptional.
So, how do you map out a killer pillar page?
Choose your keyword. The degree of difficulty should not be a deterrent.
Identify your topic cluster. What will be the pillar page topic be? Are there supporting blog posts to link to?
Great, you chose your pillar keyword! Now research the top results for that keyword. Read them, take notes, see what additional information the post includes, and find out what it's missing that you can add to your page.
Outline your pillar page. Choose what you'll write about, as well as subheadings.
Leave your page "ungated." You've spent so much time creating this amazing page, show it to the world! Include a download opportunity for visitors if you're trying to build contacts.
Additionally, include elements to help your pillar page rank higher, such as: images, videos, info graphics, and links to other relevant and credible sources. Not only are these great for SEO, but they also enhance the user experience.
"If you want to deliver a good piece of content, you need to have that user in mind and [ask], 'What do they want to see?'" explains Jon Sasala, creative director at Morey Publishing. "That's what search engines want.
"Now search engines are looking for what humans are looking for," he continues. "It's looking and making sure the stuff you're building is for users, and that's what search engines will appreciate."