How To Create a Category Based Silo Structure with Thrive Theme Builder
Want to transform your boring, outta-the-box WordPress Category Pages into highly engaging Silo Pages?
Then watch the video to learn all about the conversion focused Silo Page templates waiting for you inside Thrive Theme Builder.
You can also read on to see how deploying these unique templates on your WordPress site will help you create a clear website silo structure so you can take your Category Page designs to a whole new level...
Using Silo Pages to Create a Rock Solid Site Structure (1:26)
Students of Thrive Themes' SEO Sprint for Busy Solopreneurs online course know all about how to create a Search Engine Optimized Rock Solid Site Structure.
Rock Solid Site Structure Example: ThriveThemes.com (2:12)
Have you noticed that the Thrive Themes website also uses Silo Pages for its own Rock Solid Site Structure?
If not, check out each of our Hub pages below as an example of how you can organize your posts and pages into a handful of top-level content categories:
- Build Your Website
- Build Your Business
- Build Your Mailing List
- Build Your Funnels
- Product Updates
- Success Stories
Interested to learn how to create an SEO boosting Rock Solid Site Structure for your website? Then make sure to check out our SEO Sprint for the Busy Solopreneur online course.
That's a strategy where you create a handful of distinct WordPress post categories to bucket your site content into top-level topics, followed by assigning every blog post published to just one of those parent categories.
By doing this, your default WordPress Category Pages — for example: www.yourwebsite.com/category/category-name/ — become topic-specific content silos that organize all the content of a particular post category under a single roof.
But in carrying out this technical task, you're left to make one of two important design decisions:
- Use your WordPress theme's category page template design to function as your default content category silo page, or...
- Use custom designed landing pages and assign them to function as your content category silo pages.
This video post shows you how to execute Decision #2 with one of several conversion focused silo page templates — using nothing but Thrive Theme Builder.
Category Pages vs. Silo Pages (0:18)
Because you can execute both options using Thrive Theme Builder, which choice is best for you and your WordPress website?
The Pros of using your WordPress Category Page templates that you customize within the Thrive Theme Builder dashboard (Option #1) are as follows:
- Speed: most of the content on your default category pages will already be in place and you can simply change the top section to add a conversion focus.
- Consistency: It's easy to make sure all your different category pages have identical top and bottom sections like the other pages on your site tying into the overall design of your website.
- Evergreen: because the category list on your WordPress category page template will automatically update with the latest posts assigned to that category, you never have to worry about manually updating the page.
The Pros of using the pre-designed Shapeshift Theme Silo Page templates (Option #2 and explained how to do in this post) are as follows:
- Organize and highlight your important content: because the landing page template Silo Pages do not use the standard category list, you can easily highlight your best content — especially when if it’s not your most recent content.
- Mix & Match your post lists as needed: The sky is the limit as far as design and content organization goes with this option. You can create and apply any post list filter you want. This includes pages, so you can mix posts and pages in list elements on the same Silo Page.
Just remember that you never want any Silo Page you create competing for keywords with its default category page counterpart. If you choose Option #2, you'll need to establish redirects to prevent that from happening.
So are you ready to learn how you can 100% customize beautiful, engaging and clearly organized silo pages for your WordPress categories?
Step 1: Create a New WordPress Page (2:43)
To get started with the Silo Page method shown in the video, you'll need to create a new WordPress Page.
That's because the many Silo Page design templates that come standard with Thrive Theme Builder's Shapeshift Theme (and Thrive Architect Lite by extension) are only available as landing page templates.
Next, make sure to:
- Name your new page exactly how you want your silo page to be titled
- Modify the page permalink to look exactly like your silo page title
- And save your changes
From there you can click on the green "Launch Thrive Architect" button to — you guessed it — launch Thrive Architect.
What if I don't have Thrive Architect installed?
If you don't actually have the Thrive Architect page builder plugin installed, don't worry.
Thrive Architect Lite (included with your Thrive Theme Builder WordPress theme) loads in its place so you can still use the Silo Page Method explained in this video post.
Step 2: Select and Load Your Desired Shapeshift Theme Silo Page Template (4:20)
The next step in this silo structure method is to select and load the Silo Page template design most appropriate for your particular website's content needs.
To do this, just locate the cloud icon in the narrow right sidebar of the Thrive Editor window and click on it.
From there, the Thrive Architect landing page template library will appear in a popup lightbox. If you're using Thrive Architect Lite, note that you'll only have access to the Shapeshift Theme landing page templates.
You can then preview the different Silo Page designs available by selecting one and clicking the green "Choose Template" button.
The Silo Page template you selected will then load within your Thrive Editor where you can scroll through it to see if it's what you're looking for.
Repeat this process until you find the perfect Silo Page template so you can then move on to Step 3.
What if I want to use the other Thrive Architect Landing Page Templates?
Step 3: Customize Your Silo Page Templates (6:56)
The beauty behind each Shapeshift Theme silo page template is 2-fold:
- These templates were created by professional designers specializing in conversion optimization (so you know a conversion focus is already baked in to the designs), and...
- Each template is designed to be plug-and-play. That means you can simply swap out the demo images and follow the tutorialized copy instructions to write your own engaging text.
It doesn't get much easier than that to get the nuts and bolts of a great Silo Page ready to publish if you want it up and running in the least amount of time.
Which brings us to Step 4...
Step 4: Customize Your Post List Elements to Match the Silo Page Category (8:29)
Post List elements are the most powerful aspect of any Thrive Theme Builder crafted Silo Page.
In fact, an entire video blog post could be published explaining how to customize all the features of your Post List elements (oh wait... we already did — and you should watch it if you really want to dig deep into Post List element customization).
However, the main lesson you need to learn in order to execute this step properly is how to set up rules within your Post List elements so they only show posts assigned to a specific category type on any given Silo Page.
How To Set Up Post List Element Filter Rules for Post Categories
To do so, click on the Post List element you'd like to apply a Category filter rule to. In the left sidebar of your Thrive Editor, click on the grey "Filter Posts" button within the Post Lists tab. From there a lightbox will appear where you'll take the following steps:
- Select the "Custom Query" option tab
- Click on the green "New Rule" button
- Choose "Categories" from the "Create a display rule based on" dropdown menu
- Click the greyed out "+Add" text and choose the actual category name you want your Post List element to filter for
- Click the green "Save and Close" button to apply your new filter rule to the Post List element
How To Set Up Post List Element Filter Rules for Pages
If there are certain Pages of your website that match the category of content you are trying to create a particular Silo Page for, you can also use Post List element filter rules to include them as well.
Follow the same steps that you saw above for Post Categories, but then change the "Posts" tab to "Pages" and then select those pages you'd like to include in your Post List element:
By leveraging Post List elements in this way, your Silo Pages remain dynamically evergreen — even as you create new content. Only the most relevant category-specific content will appear on your Silo Pages exactly where you need them to.
Step 5: Assign Silo Page Redirects to Your Post Categories (14:40)
This final step is simple, but super important from an SEO perspective if you're using the Silo Page method taught in this video post.
That's because after creating your category specific Silo Pages, you probably want human visitors and search engine web-crawlers alike to associate these special landing pages as the virtual "home" for a given parent content topic (i.e. category) on your site.
To set these redirects up, all you need to do is enter the Post Categories area of your WordPress dashboard and click on the blue "Edit" text of the category type you wish to apply your redirect to.
From there, scroll down to the "Redirect Category to a Page" feature, click on the dropdown menu, and then select the Silo Page you created for that category.
Click the blue "Update" button and consider this step complete.
Are the Shapeshift Theme Silo Page Templates Mobile Responsive? (13:27)
They sure are!
Of course you're free to make and modifications and customizations you like to the Tablet and Mobile versions of your Shapeshift Theme Silo Page designs, but rest assured that our designers made these templates mobile responsive — straight out the box!
Time To Silo Up Partner! (16:27)
So that's a quick look at the new Shapeshift Theme Silo Page templates inside Thrive Theme Builder and how to implement them on your WordPress website to build an SEO friendly Rock Solid Site Structure.
What do you think of the Silo Page templates and are you planning to use them to better organize your site's content to help boost your audience engagement and organic traffic?
Let us know by leaving a comment below!