SEO Siloing is a best practice for how a website should be structured. Siloing is the act of dividing a website’s content into different categories and subcategories — groupings known as silos. Sorting and linking related pages means a website will carry more clout in search engine rankings, and index your web content. It also allows for optimizing onsite content around a wider array of keyword groups. Siloing for SEO is considered an essential SEO step when creating a new website.
The algorithms responsible for search engine rankings favor order. Not only do unorganized websites make content confusing for human readers, but it also complicates the way a search engine is able to crawl and sort content.
How Do I Silo My Website?
There are two techniques to silo a website.
Physical siloing involves the creation of a content hierarchy.
Here is how physical siloing should be done, using a high education institution website as an example:
- Homepage: A homepage should provide a brief introduction to the school and welcome users to the site.
- Key silo categories: This is where you start siloing. Group your website into distinctive sub-topics, and remember to keep them simple. Keeping the silo names short will mean the URLs are short, too, making it easier for search engines to navigate. For a higher education institution, the key categories may be “programs,” “courses,” “meet the staff,” and “blog.”
- Category pages: Now sort your content into the four silo categories listed above. For example, the “programs” silo may contain category pages about admissions, different academic faculties, and how students can apply.
- Supporting pages: These are pages that support the main content you’ve sorted into silos. Dividing your site into supporting pages means there’s a greater chance specific search queries will land on your webpage. This is the chance to add more content under, say, the academic faculties category, to give complete details of the programs offered by the institution.
- Blog: Content that is relevant and contains links to the silos, category pages, and supporting pages on your website. Blogs are a valuable part of the second siloing technique.
Another way for your website to be better understood by search engines is to appropriately link relevant pages within a site to each other.
When publishing blog posts or website pages, it’s important to link to relevant content found elsewhere on your site. In your analytics, look at the pages that are most popular with visitors. Then spread the love — by linking to other not-so-popular, yet relevant, pages from your highly read ones, you’re more likely to distribute web traffic and page authority throughout your site.
Let’s take the example of the higher education institution mentioned earlier. Remember that the four silos on that hypothetical website are “programs,” “courses,” “meet the staff,” and “blog.” Link-based siloing occurs when a post in the blog silo links to a piece of content in another silo, say a page in the “meet the staff” section. To further appeal to search engines, create one more link where the first blog post links readers to another blog entry.
If a blog post is about the new psychology course being offered at the school, your first link may be to the professor’s biography page in the “meet the staff” silo. Another link in that post may connect readers to a previous blog entry about summer university news.
By manually creating these internal site connections, search engines will do the same.
With these two SEO siloing techniques, new sites and existing ones can be better organized to more effectively speak the language of search engines and rank higher in search engine results.
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