Siloing is a strategic on-page process of building well-defined sites. It is an approach that few designers incorporate but is an absolutely critical building-block of website construction. The purpose of Google and Bing is to deliver the most relevant sites in returned search results. Years ago, all that was necessary was keyword density. But search engines have grown tremendously sophisticated. Search engines now penalize for excess or unorganized keyword use. Siloing is a fundamental incorporation of matching a site’s theme to it’s keywords.
The term “siloing” is derived from the cylindrical structures found in the midwest. These storage units contain specific products, like corn. In other words, a site about dogs would likely have the following silos: puppy training, dog breeds, canine nutrition. But the site would not contain things such as cat breeds, cat behavior and other unrelated terms. One of the best examples of siloing can is About.com. The site is informational based–which is its theme. It has specific silos such as career, autos, computers, food, health, travel, sports, et cetera.
Under each category or silo, the information is strongly related to the topic. However, most websites are not designed or maintained in this fashion. The vast majority of websites tend to be disorganized and disjointed, even though it appears to have a well oriented structure.
More often than not, a website is [an] array of unrelated information with no clear central theme. Such a site suffers in search engine rankings for sought after keywords. –Bruce Clay
This phenomenon occurs largely because of changes in industry trends. As things change, content reflects these changes. But this often means the central theme or subject matter becomes diluted.
Why Search Engines Prefer Siloing
As mentioned, the stated mission of search engines is to return search results with the most relevance. It’s why About.com and Wikipedia come up at the top of the organic search results. So, for a site which sells musical instruments it would use siloing to differentiate the instruments it sold.
For instance, “Guitars” would be the broad category. But under “Guitars” would be the specific types:
In another silo, bass guitars would appear with its types. And another silo would contain drums with its subsets. woodwind, brass and all the other instruments would likewise be grouped together. But the overall theme would not change–the whole site is still dedicated to musical instruments. However, there is no bleed-over from one category to another.
Search engine algorithms are specifically designed to look for this type of siloing structure, then rank sites accordingly. So even a site with solid content and a bunch of relevant keywords will rank below a site containing quality content, less keywords and well-structured siloing–simply because the later site is better organized.
If you want a professionally designed site that incorporates good siloing, then contact us for a free, expert consultation. We will construct a well-planned, eye-catching site that search engines will love and visitors will keep coming back to time and again.