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A Comprehensive Guide to SEO Silos

One factor influencing SEO that many businesses neglect is site structure. A logical and well-organized site structure that links related topics together can drastically improve your search results and conversion rates. Conversely, a sporadic and disconnected site with orphan pages will hurt your results. 

In this article, we’ll cover the basics of SEO silos and how you can use them to improve your search results. We will also discuss some tips on how to make your siloing as effective as possible. 

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What Are SEO Silos?

SEO silos are a form of website architecture in which web pages relating to a specific topic or concept are grouped together in “silos” that do not interlink with one another. Individual silos each have a home page, under which all relevant pages are linked. 

A simple example of siloing in practice is the website structure on this very page. The top bar of our website contains drop-down menus that link to pages related to the main topic. For example, our “Services” tab connects to the various advertising and SEO services we offer, such as PPC or web design. Similarly, our “Blog” tab organizes our various blog posts and blog content, and the “Reviews” tab connects to customer testimonials. 

The key aspect of this type of website architecture is grouping similar topics together in a single category to make search results and navigation more streamlined. Websites that organize content under silos are easier for search engines to parse and make it easier for website visitors to find the pages they are looking for. 

“Hard” Vs. “Soft” Siloing

There are two main types of siloing you can use to organize your web pages: hard siloing and soft siloing. 

With hard siloing, the individual silos are built into the URL structure of your website. Each silo is a folder that stores all the relevant pages that fall underneath that category. The structure of these silos is reflected in the structure of your URLs, like this:

  • www.company-name/silo-name/page-name

As you can see, hard siloing creates a tight logical structure for your website, but long silo names and page names can make URLs look cluttered. 

In contrast, soft silos are built simply by hyperlinking relevant internal pages on the core silo page. Under this structure, each page has its own name, and the links are included on a single page for browsing. Soft siloing reduces URL congestion but can make it harder for engines to search. 

Benefits of SEO Silos

Incorporating SEO siloing into your digital marketing plan carries several notable benefits. 

Boost Search Rankings

The main benefit of siloing is it helps you get better search rankings. The nested URL structure of silos makes it easier for the search engine spider to crawl your site and identify your content. Google search engine results heavily rely on internal link structure, and silos create several internal links that are clearly and logically organized. 

Make Future Website Growth Easier

Structuring your website according to silos also makes it easier to expand and add content to your website in the future. The modular nature of silos allows you to easily add pages and create a comprehensive site directory that incorporates all pages. The scalable structure of siloing allows you to expand your site offerings while maintaining a logical and easy-to-parse structure.

Improve Visitor Experience

Anyone who has ever visited a website with inconsistent architecture knows it can be frustrating to navigate and find the pages you want. Siloing creates simple categories for grouping site content, so it’s much easier for visitors to navigate to the pages they need and search relevant concepts and topics. That means fewer shoppers getting frustrated and abandoning their carts when they can’t find what they need.  

Tips for Effective SEO Siloing

The better your siloing the better your search results will be. Below are some of our top tips for making your SEO silos as effective as possible. 

Plan Your Silos

The first step is drawing out your basic silo structure. If present, you can use pre-existing categories or tags to help organize pages. Think about what your website focuses on and what kinds of categories a visitor would look for. 

You can physically draw out topic clusters or you can use a program to organize website content. Each silo needs to have a main page under which pages in that category are organized. 

Use Lots of Internal Links

Internal links are the single most important part of siloing as it tells the search engine crawler how your website is organized. Having lots of links that connect each page boosts SEO as it gives the impression you are an authority on the relevant topic. Each link needs anchor text that relates to the topic the linked page covers. You can manually examine your site for keyword opportunities or use a keyword research tool to find appropriate internal link placement. 

Follow the “Three Click” Rule

Silos are great for organizing but they can sometimes stratify your site too much, making it cumbersome to navigate. The trick is to keep every page on your site within no more than three clicks from your main silo page or home page. Google refers to the number of layers their crawler goes through as the ‘crawl depth.’

Does SEO Siloing Have Any Downsides?

One of the main downsides of SEO siloing is how the independent nature of each silo can make it harder to find cross-linking opportunities. In the abstract, silo categories are entirely separate from each other. However, in the real world, silo categories might actually overlap with other silo categories. Since silos only contain links that point to other pages in the silo, it can obscure the value of crosslinking between different silos. 

SEO Services for Scaling Small Businesses

Read our blog to learn about the importance of social signals. If you have any questions about SEO silos or would like to discuss your marketing plan, contact Peppermonkey Media online or call (888) 231-9764 today!

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