Creating Content Clusters & Pillar Pages For Real Estate SEO

Hello everyone,

For those that were able to attend the session live yesterday, thank you so much for spending the time with us, and for all your great questions.

We’ve uploaded the video to our Youtube Channel, and you can access the replay right here:

A bunch of people have already reached out with lots of great follow-up questions, so I will be using this thread to answer those. (If you post elsewhere, I’ll move it here so that everyone can see your question and there is a consolidated place for the answers and discussion.

A few of the questions that were answered:

#1: Question: @realestateinparkcity asked How do you avoid keyword cannibalization?

This was answered in the video at the 15-minute mark, but to make it easier, I’ll post here as well

#1: Answer: When you’re planning your content clusters, each page and post should have it’s own “main topic” so for example: If “Youbou Real Estate” is my pillar topic, then “Youbou Real Estate” is also the chosen main keyword for that page. Other pages I create must have different main topics that relate to the main one: So for example “Youbou Waterfront” or “Youbou Luxury” does that make sense?

#2: Question: @judyorr asked about how to verify Google Search Console on your REW site.

#2: Answer: If you want to use the upload file method, you can send that file to support @ or you can also use the metatag verification method via the tools section. Here is the thread you need for options Verify your site ownership - Search Console Help

#3: Question: What are the main types of real estate content in a content closer?

#3: Answer: Main pages, Sub Pages, Blogs and listings

#4: Question: How do you optimize listing details pages to support your clusters and internal linking?

#4: Answer: I created a list of helpful optimizations for details pages at this thread. The specific one you want is detecting filenames that contain your root keyword in the URL (in the case above its Youbou) our team knows what to do, just point them to the thread (sidenote, that specific optimization does require billable engineering time, but if you do an early renewal you can pretty much always get that one for free)

#5: Question: @StuartNeal “Thx Morgan. It’s a lot to take in. I see why agencies charge so much now. For those on limited budgets what might be the top 3 things to focus on?”

#5: Answer: Top 3?

First: Pick ONE cluster target (don’t make the mistake of getting big eyes, you need to do one at a time). It’s much better to do one well than a bunch poorly.

Next: Group your sub-topics, this is generally pretty easy in most areas since property types, and niche-specific words are such logical choices. So if my pillar was said “Edmonton real estate” then my subpages would be “Edmonton homes” or “Edmonton condos” that sort of thing

Finally - get to work! I write a post on the 3 layers of content, go read that :slight_smile:

Any more questions, feel free to ask, let’s get this conversation going!

If you loved this content: Please leave us a 5-star Google review and 5 Star G2 review.

And if you want to help out @Carly with her next pillar, please link to her Youbou Real Estate page in a contextually relevant way (and if you don’t know what that means, happy to help, just ask below :slight_smile:

Does it hurt SEO or have a negative impact (cannibalization) on it to have more than one link point to the same page. For example, a navigation tab for Communities with drop downs for each community that then has the new homes for that community under the “explore” button. And a navigation tab for New Homes with drop downs for each community’s new homes page that points to the same page? I should mention that the New Homes pages are all listed as sub-pages to their respective community’s main page.

Generally in the pillar concept, only “main” pages are linked to from the main navigation, and sub-pages are only linked to from their main page, blogs, and listings.

The reason for this is your homepage, and other main pages typically have the highest PageRank, and when you link to another page you are giving some of that Pagerank to the linked page.

What you want is your “main pages” to get the lion’s share from other main pages Pagerank.

Think of it this way: (a simplified explanation of how PageRank transfer works)

If a page has 100 points to give, and you link to 10 main pages, each page gets 10 points
If a page has 100 points to give and you link to 100 pages, each page gets only 1 point

Typically “main pages” require far more Pagerank in order to rank well (they target more competitive terms) and so you want strong Pagerank on those pages.

Linking too many pages dilutes your PageRank and can harm your main pillars ability to rank.

To put it more succinctly, if you try to rank for everything, you will rank for nothing :slight_smile:

1 Like

@Morgan Thanks for this explanation of the pillar and subpages. I too however, am not quite clear on if we can have links from our main page as well as the site bar navigation-drop down, going to the same location. As an example, On my site,, I have the nav bar at the top that has a drop down of “Community Info”, where 1. it then has a “Community Information” link that takes you to a summary page of all the cities and links to them, and then 2. the drop down links go directly to those specific community pages(which of course have the idx listings) Then, 3. at the bottom of my home page, is a snippet that says “Discover Areas That Suit Your Lifestyle” and that snippet links directly to each city idx. So is this layout ok or too much going to same place?
Last, what if I wanted to update the Discover Areas to link directly to each detailed community page that is already accessible on the Community Info drop down rather than just have IDX links? Which layout would be best for SEO purposes? The insight from you on how to best have the site laid out would be tremendously helpful.
(PS, my Renaissance site was converted from an old platform so I am struggling with old vs new and best SEO practices)

Always think about your users before you worry about SEO (that’s actually the best way to do SEO), so in this case I would say it is quite possible you have redundancy in your top nav vs your bottom nav etc.

Ask yourself - are the links in your top nav THE MOST important pages for your users to get to? That is what goes to the top nav.

Footer links are generally a good way to distribute PageRank to pages of lesser importance but you still want to get some link juice to. “Generally” I would not bother putting links in the top nav and in the footer unless it made sense to be there (contact might make sense in both since they may pick it right away, or be looking for it by the end of the page).

Thank you! This was extremely helpful!

Question to on Footer Links, I just added the Luxury Real Estate Logo to my footer. The Who’s Who in Luxury Real Estate. I have not linked the global real estate website to the logo as I don’t know how that will affect what you call “page Juice”. How would adding a link to another real estate website affect my SEO or would it?