What is a Content cluster?[ + Strategies to improve Seo]

Safalta Expert Published by: Aryan Rana Updated Mon, 30 Jan 2023 12:04 PM IST


The supporting content you create for your pillar pages is called cluster content. You can think of them as content silos that expand on each pillar page topic's potential subtopics.

The goal of a content cluster is to improve a website's visibility and ranking for specific keywords or phrases related to the topic and to attract more organic traffic from search engines. A well-planned and executed content cluster can provide a better user experience, increase engagement and conversions, and ultimately drive more revenue for the business.

Table of Content
What are content clusters?
What is a pillar page?
What is cluster content?
How do I choose the subtopics for a pillar page?
How do internal linkages work?

What are some internal link best practices?
The origins of content clusters

Clusters of content do more than just sprinkle keywords across the text and hope Google finds them. Instead, a content cluster SEO strategy leverages internal linking and subject modelling to enhance your content's user experience and increase search performance.

Our team has implemented this technique for numerous clients over the last couple of years, so we're eager to explain the ins and outs of content clusters and how they support your SEO efforts.

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What are content clusters?

The contrast between a site with and one without content clusters is the greatest approach to demonstrate what a content cluster performs.

Without content clusters, it's likely that your SEO content production efforts would consist primarily of praying that anything will stick while shooting in the dark.

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You can just go for it after coming up with a hazy content concept or an aspirational term you want to target in a piece of content. And you repeat that process for many concepts and keywords.

Before you realise it, you've accumulated a sizable, disorganised repository of blogs on numerous subjects only loosely linked to your products or industry.

There are surely many jewels in there, even without a coherent content strategy to attract their attention. Even so, Google doesn't seem to regard you as an authority in your field or to value the high calibre information you have created.
What is a pillar page?

Your website's pillar pages are distinct web pages or hub pages that cover a specific topic in a way that is both comprehensive and concise enough to establish authority on the topic while still giving you the flexibility to develop supplementary content such as articles, blogs, and guides that expand on the topic.

Using SiteCare's Learn page as an example, you may utilise pillar pages to contain your own material (embedded videos, blogs, tutorials, reports, etc.) or act as a resource page to link to relevant online resources on a particular subject. Additionally, you can make your primary service pages your pillar pages.

To support our WordPress maintenance and Inbound marketing services pages, we at Sitecore have created pillar pages. Since both of these subjects are so extensive, neither can be fully covered on a single page. This gives us flexibility when building our content clusters.

What is cluster content?

The supporting content you create for your pillar pages is called cluster content. You can think of them as content silos that expand on each pillar page topic's potential subtopics.

For instance, we've created a number of more in-depth content pieces (which we refer to as our "sub hub" pages) for SiteCare's WordPress pillar page that concentrates on subtopics like:

How do I choose the subtopics for a pillar page?

While we will discuss this in more length later in this blog, let's just quickly mention that it's often helpful to find out what internet visitors are truly looking to learn about a subject.

We conduct research on these hot topics using Ahrefs, Quora, Google Answer Boxes, Exploding Topics, and UberSuggest.

How do internal linkages work?

Internal links, often known as hyperlinks, are what connect your various pieces of material. They are implemented as an on-page SEO strategy to assist your readers in navigating your website and discovering pertinent content on the same subject. Additionally, links make it simpler for Google's bots to scan and index your website, which increases the likelihood that your pages will have higher page rankings and that your material will appear high up on a search engine results page (SERP).

What are some internal link best practices?

A list of some best practises recommendations (does and don'ts) from experts like Neil Patel, Moz, Search Engine Journal, and Ahrefs is provided below:
  • Do not link to photos. Patel advises using anchor text instead, which is what we have done in this line. Make sure the purpose of the phrase, word, or sentence you used when linking anchor text is obvious. Google and your internet users will have less faith in you if you link to material that doesn't support your anchor text or provide value to the user.
  • Linking to content that is hard to find on the navigation menus should be prioritised. If you think about why you're utilising internal links in the first place, linking to your navigation menu is a throwaway connection. This is known as "deep linking." Beyond what is visible on the "surface" level, Google bots and end users need assistance navigating your site.
  • Limit the number of internal links on a single page. While most SEO experts are unable to pinpoint the exact number of internal links that Google may deem "too many," he advises keeping it to three to four. Moz appears to disagree and permits anything below 150. Links in the menu and the footer are included. When adding links, it's probably a good idea to keep the reader in mind first and foremost. Do they really want to scroll through 150 hyperlinks on a single page?
  • Direct and useful links to the most crucial pages Why? This concentrates link value, according to Search Engine Journal, and sends these pages link authority, or link equity, which tells Google (and other search engines) that the page is very valuable.
  • Check the status of your internal links frequently. According to Ahrefs, links can be broken or point to irrelevant pages that don't increase link authority. You might also be passing up chances to link to "orphan pages," which are pages without any internal links. You may crawl your site to detect and correct all of the following using Ahref's Site Audit tool.

These three elements pillar pages, content clusters, and internal links enable you to create a superbly ordered and high-quality collection of information that is helpful to your consumers and is incredibly simple for Google to crawl when they operate together in a content cluster architecture.

In particular, the internal connections are what show Google that there is a connection between all of the linked content. And when all of that linked information is jam-packed with excellent content, it shows Google that you have a depth of in-depth expertise on a certain subject. You receive a boost in search ranks when you have that kind of authority and quality.

I believe it's crucial to emphasise the "why" behind selecting this technique before we get deeper into the intricacies of how our team develops content clusters.

The origins of content clusters

It's no secret that Google's algorithm is always evolving; as a result, SEO specialists like myself must constantly be on our toes. But the evolution of Google's algorithm has undergone a seismic upheaval during the past several years. This change essentially means that if you don't put users first, Google won't put you first either.

Search engines used to only deliver results based on keywords in the early days of SEO. Unfortunately, this algorithm's emphasis on keywords eventually gave rise to some unethical SEO practices or "black hat" SEO.

Perhaps the most well-known instance of unethical SEO tactics is keyword stuffing. Even though it's crucial to incorporate keywords into your content so that people can access pertinent, high-quality information, the habit of carelessly stuffing keywords into text usually indicates that you're writing for an algorithm rather than the user. Additionally, that kind of stuff is typical.

What is a content topic cluster?

A topic cluster consists of several pieces of material that are organised by a common subject and connected subtopics. These pages provide thorough coverage of a certain topic as a whole. This makes it possible for visitors to your site to find what they were looking for.

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Does the SEO of a topic cluster matter?

Topic Clusters: Do They Affect SEO? Yes. Topic clusters aid search engines in understanding and analysing your material more thoroughly. Internal links enable search engines like Google to index additional pages on your website and determine the relationships and hierarchies between your articles.

How is a content cluster made?

The five phases to building a content cluster are as follows: completing SEO research, selecting an overall topic or theme, selecting article topics within the cluster, producing excellent long-form content, and implementing an internal linking strategy.

How do I create a topic cluster in SEO?

To create a topic cluster in SEO, you can follow these steps:

  1. Choose a central topic: Relevant topics must be chosen by choosing a central topic or theme that aligns with your target audience and business goals.
  2. Conduct keyword research: Use keyword research tools to find relevant keywords to create an article and topics out of it.
  3. Create pillar content: Develop a comprehensive piece of pillar content that provides an overview of the central topic. 
  4. Develop cluster content: Create several pieces of cluster content that revolve around specific subtopics related to the central topic. Make sure each piece is in-depth and provides value to the reader.
  5. Interlink the content: Interlink the pillar and cluster content to create a structure that signals relevance and authority to search engines. Use internal links, contextual links, and image links to connect the content.
  6. Promote the content: Promote the pillar and cluster content on social media, forums, and other channels to drive traffic and increase visibility.
  7. Monitor and adjust: Monitor the performance of your topic cluster using analytics tools by adjusting your strategy as needed to achieve your goals.

What is the primary purpose of a topic cluster content strategy?

The primary purpose of a topic cluster content strategy is to improve a website's visibility and ranking in search engine results for specific keywords or phrases related to a central topic. The idea behind this strategy is to create a comprehensive and organized collection of content that covers different aspects of a central topic and to interlink the pieces to create a structure that signals relevance and authority to search engines. The goal is to drive more organic traffic to the website and to provide a better user experience by offering in-depth and valuable content that covers various aspects of a topic.

What are some key benefits of cluster in digital marketing?

The key benefits of using a topic cluster strategy in digital marketing are:

  • Improved visibility and ranking in search engine results
  • Increased organic traffic
  • Better user experience
  • Increased brand credibility and authority
  • Increased revenue

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Digital marketing courses cover various aspects of digital marketing and may include:

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  10. Web Analytics
  11. Digital Marketing Strategy
  12. Digital Marketing Tools and Techniques
  13. Video and Visual Marketing
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These courses can be pursued online or in person, through certification programs, boot camps or academic programs. They can provide theoretical and practical knowledge and help individuals build skills and advance their careers in digital marketing.

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