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What is a Pillar Page and How Can It Improve Your SEO?

April 11th, 2023 | 4 min. read

By Kim Kovelle

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What is a Pillar Page and How Can It Improve Your SEO?

You know that feeling when your content is languishing on Page 20 of Google search results? Yeah — it's frustrating. Especially when you've worked hard to make Google happy.

But you may need to dig deeper into content marketing tactics. Pillar pages can be a superhighway to better SERP (i.e., search engine results page) results. These in-depth webpages on specific topics gather high-quality content in one spot.

At Zoe Marketing & Communications, we create and fine-tune client pillar pages. That includes sponsored pages that drive traffic on our sister websites, Metro Parent in metro Detroit and Chicago Parent.

In this blog, we'll tap into that experience to cover:

You'll walk away with a clear idea of what pillar pages can do. And you'll better understand whether they're the right move for you.


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What a pillar page is

A pillar page is a robust webpage on a particular topic. It links to related articles that drill deeper into that topic and give more detail.

Boiled down, there are five key things to know about a pillar page.

1. It has 2 main parts

  1. A "parent" pillar page that gives a comprehensive overview

  2. "Child" article pages, which have more-specific insights

This structure gives breadcrumbs to Google. It signals you're a comprehensive source of information on a specific topic.

Pillar Page Parts

2. It's selective

Not every topic is worthy of a pillar page. Strong candidates include:

  • Topics that are well-aligned with your brand

  • Topics that have good search volume

  • Topics that you have lots of great content for (10-30 articles is a good range)

3. It's well-organized

The idea is to draw people in and keep them there. Effective pillar pages are user-friendly. They have neatly labeled sections. They're arranged in an easy-to-navigate hierarchy.

4. It has excellent cross-linking

As marketing innovator HubSpot notes, interconnectedness is essential. Those "child articles" should link back to the parent pillar page. This way, if someone Googling finds the child article, you offer them an easy way to learn more on the main page.

In that child article, the link to the main page could look like: 

  • A hyperlinked line of text placed in the article at several key points

  • "Ad"-style images placed throughout the article

  • A pop-up ad that "sticks" on the page as people scroll

5. It has quality content

Google loves authentic, informative writing, and a pillar page should have plenty. Aim for at least 1,000-2,000 words. Some pages have 5,000 or more — depending on how many articles you link to. Remember, you want to encourage people to read more, not spell out everything.

How pillar pages help SEO

Google's job is to connect people to the information they're searching for. The algorithms can seem mysterious, sure. But pillar pages make Google happy in a few powerful ways.

They boost engagement and time on page

Have you ever clicked on a website to read something — and then couldn't stop clicking to other related articles? That's what a pillar page does really well.

Because it's topic-focused, well-organized, packed with links and user-friendly, a pillar page makes people more likely to stick around longer. There are more opportunities to keep clicking and learning about a topic.

They're centered around keywords

Whether focused on charter schools or cordless vacuums, pillar pages answer lots of questions about a specific topic or "keyword" in one spot.

When people visit and linger, Google registers that this is a high-value page for searchers. As a result, you'll start ranking higher in search results and getting more traffic.

They're full of words and links

Google loves — and rewards — high-quality writing and links to related content. Its "crawlers" are constantly scanning and indexing pages for it. Pillar pages help you make Google's job easier by collecting heaps of quality content and links in one space.

Another link perk: If your pillar page is thorough enough, other sites might start linking to it. Google rewards these "backlinks," too.

Types of pillar pages

A pillar page is an umbrella-topic webpage that links to more-specific articles related to that topic. But they can have different focuses, structures and aesthetics.

3 different focuses

In particular, the Content Marketing Institute highlights three key common types:

  1. 10X Content: A collection of your own content on a specific topic. Think of it as an un-gated guide that's "10 times" better than the top search result for that topic.

  2. Resource: A bookmark-able reference page. It could link to a series of related pages (not exclusive to your site) or a masterclass you create with your own content.

  3. Service: An educational array of material related to your services or products.

Each of these approaches can work on your website. Even more so if you consistently publish high-quality articles and have a solid backlog.

Sometimes, you can also team up with a media partner, sponsoring content on their website. This works best if your message and audience are highly aligned.

4 different examples

There are no hard and fast rules for creating pillar pages; it's about your target topic. That said, here are a few samples of what pillar pages can look like or feature.

1. Narrative

These pages literally tell a story. They feature muscular, long-form writing. In fact, they look like blogs, except they're often lengthier. And they're divided into sections.

There's extensive hyperlinking to child articles in the text. Between sections, there are often visual previews of the same stories linked above — in other words, a second chance to click.

Example: How to Help a Child With Autism Thrive on

How to Help a Child with Autism Thrive Pillar Example

2. Stylized

This version leans more heavily on design and visual experience. It still has substantial writing but looks less like an article and more like a website landing page. It can feature extra images and graphics, plus many opportunities to click on related articles.

Example: The Ultimate Family Guide to Chicago History Museum's New Exhibit, City on Fire: Chicago 1871 on

The Ultimate Family Guide to Chicago History Museum's New Exhibit, City on Fire: Chicago 1871 Pillar Page Example

3. Guide or 'how to'

This type offers in-depth information on general topics to help people understand a subject or make a decision. It works whether you have your blog or you're working with a media partner.

Example: The Complete Guide on How to Buy a Sofa on Apartment Therapy

The Complete Guide on How to Buy a Sofa Pillar Page Example

4. Services or 'what is'

This type focuses more on the products and services you offer. Since it's geared toward your industry and company, it works best for your own website.

Example: What is Wine Exactly? on Wine Folly

Example screenshot from Wine Folly's pillar page called "What is Wine Exactly"

Next steps for exploring pillar pages

Pillar pages can take your SEO to the next level. These thorough webpages on specific topics are well-organized, optimized for a keyword and designed to draw people in deeper.

Ready to harness pillar pages' power for your business? Talk to us. Zoe Marketing & Communications can help you find the right type of pillar page for your business.

Still learning about content marketing? Get grounded with these great "starter" articles:

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Kim Kovelle

As Zoe Marketing & Communications’ content manager, Kim Kovelle brings nearly 20 years of writing and editing experience in metro Detroit. She has strong roots in community journalism and a knack for making complicated topics make more sense.