An Evolution and Enhancement of SEO: Topic Clusters Model

An Evolution and Enhancement of SEO Topic Clusters Model
Published By - Kelsey Taylor

Content is key and SEO is the map to use the key to attract the right audience. Hence, it is important to learn about the new strategies and the Topic Clusters Model is a new stage in SEO.  

Moreover, SEO has seen various enhancements throughout the year. However, one of the pivotal innovations is introducing the Topic Clusters Model as an SEO strategy.

Businesses and marketers often look for new ways to create engaging content to land their website on the top of Google Search. Although, as well-written and descriptive as the content may be, it is necessary to cater to SEO suggestions and norms.

People often struggle between creating good content while creating content that Google ranks. Hence, to address this and build a library specific to the target audiences let us learn more about Topic Clusters Model and its impact on SEO.

Firstly, let us know more about the concept Topic Clusters Model.

Understanding SEO Topic Clusters Model and How it Works

What is the Topic Clusters Model?

In 2015, Google introduced RankBrain, to connect a user’s past searches to related topics and phrases. Hence, this helps users to find the best results for a particular topic.

Simultaneously, ranking in the Search Engine Results Page while focussing keywords is important. Therefore, a website that uses more related topics and keywords ranked better on SERP. As a result, the Topic Clusters Model was introduced.

Topic Clusters Model is a suite of web pages that interlink to construct content around a pillar content. Thus, the pillar content targets an umbrella topic. In other words, the search visibility of a particular topic is better than trying to rank for a specific keyword.

Moreover, Topic Clusters Model is an SEO strategy that develops an area of influence. For instance, the universal group of searches for relevant topics with long-tail keywords exceed the search for the main keyword. Therefore, it helps businesses organize the structure and content of their website.

Most importantly, when a blog ranks well on SERP, so does the entire cluster. 

Key Components of SEO’s Topic Clusters Model

  • Pillar Content: It is the core of the content as it is based on a broader topic. Moreover, it requires 3000 to 5000 words to encompass the aspect of a topic. Although, it does leave space for other posts and sub-topics.
    Above all, it helps people who may not be familiar with a topic by providing them a comprehensive overview of it.
  • Cluster Content: Cluster Content works with various contents that connect precisely to the pillar content. However, unlike the pillar content, cluster content focuses on a major keyword that is related to a broader keyword.
    As a result, discussing the major keyword’s subject in a detailed manner. Most importantly, a cluster content contains links that lead users back to the pillar content.
  • Hyperlinks: Hyperlinks are a very important component. Mainly because hyperlinks are the ones that connect pillar and cluster content. 

How does the SEO Topic Clusters Model work?

It is important to work on pillar content because it enables businesses to simplify the process of content creation. As a result, it helps produce better content efficiently.

Topic Clusters Model aims to create quality content and go beyond traditional SEO strategies. Moreover, it encourages creators to plan, research, and deliver content in multiple formats.

In addition, a business regardless of the industry it belongs to can optimize its content. Hence, here are the steps to follow while creating Topic Clusters Model :

Decide The Topic

It is necessary to select a pillar page that is the main topic. Therefore, this helps creators build content clusters around the pillar page.

Moreover, it is important to focus on the following pointers while selecting the main topic:

  • A good content marketing strategy generates more leads.
  • Similarly, promotions of blog posts through social media platforms help gain traction.
  • Email-generated content ideas can also help reach target audiences.

Hence, it is important that there is a common pattern throughout the content. Above all, a robust topic clusters model represents the foundation of a business. As a result, the content and topics on a website help search engines easily navigate the content. Therefore, the easier it is to skim through the content library, there is the higher the ranking possibility.

Thorough Keyword Search can Define the Clusters

Brainstorming a list of topics is a great way, to begin with. Although, it is critical to research the topics that are relevant to the pillar clusters.

Further, it is recommended to conduct thorough research on the relevant topic. Hence, it helps build more ideas and structures the content for the pillar page.

As a result, there are multiple keyword research tools similar to Google Keyword Tool to gain more insights on a topic and learn about related keywords. Therefore, while researching keywords, grouping them can save time, improve SEO, and help creators understand what searchers are looking for.

Writing the Cluster Pages

After creating the pillar pages it is now time to create the cluster pages and create subtopics. A cluster page is very similar to composing a blog. Although it does carry two significant exceptions:

  • Firstly, do not mention any topic in detail that is written on another cluster page.
  • Lastly, descend into a subtopic that focuses on the keyword.

Above all, it is important to follow the best practices while drafting any blog content. It also must include long-form pieces, original data, and suitable visual content. 

Most importantly, the topic needs to be unique. In other words, a cluster page should not be too repetitive or similar to another cluster page.

In addition, while writing a blog on the relevant topic, ensure to optimize it. Hence, adding long-tail keywords to the page title, headings, image alt text, body copy, meta title, and descriptions is a good SEO practice.

Discover Existing Content to Update

A lot of times, creating new content requires time, resources, and effort. Content Marketing Insights recently discovered that 58% of B2B companies have less than one full-time employee that handles content marketing.

Hence, businesses can use SEO Topic Clusters Model to polish and republish older content. Therefore it eliminates the requirement to create newer content.

Above all, a basic content audit can help you search for the topic relevant to the blog posts. As a result, this can help the content rank in the search engines. 

Writing the Pillar Page

When creators have the topic clusters model ready, the next step is to draft a pillar page. Hence, it provides a holistic view on the specific topic and creators can add internal cluster links. 

Therefore, writing a pillar page can be similar to writing a blog post. Although there are certain criteria:

  • Firstly, it is necessary to write an overview on one broad topic.
  • Most importantly, the content must be in long-form consisting of 3000 to 5000 words.

Moreover, it is important to write a pillar page after drafting the topic clusters model. That is to say, writing a pillar page first can create problems when creators do not know the subtopic clusters. It also leads to a risk of duplicating pointers and a creator cannot add placeholders for internal links for the cluster pages.

Adding Internal Links between Pillars and Clusters

Lastly, an important practice is to add internal links after publishing the pillar and cluster pages. Most importantly, creators must head back to every topic cluster and link it to the pillar page.

Conclusion:

Content and SEO strategist, Michael Keenan states, “A cluster is a strategic, living artifact that prioritizes and communicates search engine authority – it tells Google you are the best resource for a topic. Clusters are successful when they offer reliable answers to searchers’ questions, provide unique perspectives, and are organized around a pillar page or landing page.
They are particularly helpful for small- to mid-size businesses who want to rank for competitive keywords but don’t have a strong root domain just yet.”

In conclusion, the topic clusters model serves Google’s latent semantic-indexing algorithm. As a result, influencing topics in clusters to utilize the SEO strategy to move up in ranks.


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Kelsey manages Marketing and Operations at HiTechNectar since 2010. She holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration and Management. A tech fanatic and an author at HiTechNectar, Kelsey covers a wide array of topics including the latest IT trends, events and more. Cloud computing, marketing, data analytics and IoT are some of the subjects that she likes to write about.

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