Content Strategy

Validate internal links between subtopic content and pillar pages

Last updated: October 4, 2018

Applies to:

Marketing Hub
Basic, Professional, Enterprise

In your content strategy tool, you can keep track of internal links to make sure that your subtopic content page or blog post contains a link back to your pillar page. These internal links contribute to the content strategy framework for increasing organic traffic.

Validate internal links

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Planning and Strategy > Content Strategy.
  • Click the name of a topic.
  • In the Topical Coverage tab, you'll see a visual representation of your topical coverage:
    • If a subtopic is connected to the topic with a green line, the attached subtopic content includes an internal link to your pillar page.
    • If a subtopic is connected to the topic with a gray line, there is no attached subtopic content.
    • If a subtopic is connected to the topic with a red line, the attached subtopic content does not include an internal link to your pillar page.

To add an internal link to your pillar page in your subtopic content:

  • Click the Content Performance tab.
  • In the Subtopic content section, identify unlinked subtopic content with the warningicdo Not Linked label in the Link to pillar page column.
  • Click the name of the subtopic content to access the content's performance page.

  • In the upper right, click Edit.
  • In the blog post or page editor, add a hyperlink to your pillar page.
  • In the upper right, click Update to take your changes live.
  • Return to the Content Performance tab in the content strategy tool. Hover over the subtopic content and click Edit.
  • In the right pane, click Check for link. If an internal link is found, the red box in the pane will disappear and the subtopic content will be labelled as Linked in the Link to pillar page column.

Internal links are not validating

If you have added internal links in your subtopic content to your pillar content, but your internal links are still not detected, there are a few possible reasons: 

  • Check to make sure that your subtopic content has been published. The tool can't detect internal links in a draft page or blog post.
  • The internal link must be on the subtopic page linking back to the pillar page. You can link from your pillar page to your subtopic content, but the tool is only looking for internal link(s) on your subtopic content for validation.
  • It can take up to four hours for the crawler to complete the crawl once you click to check for links.
<a href=“”>our home page</a> 

Please note: CTAs are JavaScript snippets that redirect to your destination URL. Since the link to the destination is not present in the body HTML of the page, Google’s crawlers will not detect it as an internal link. 

  • The anchor tag in the page source must match the pillar page URL format in the content strategy tool.
    • If the link in the subtopic content is hardcoded as http, but your pillar page is on SSL, you will need to make the link https
    • Relative links will be detected without issue. Either the absolute URL (e.g., or the relative URL (e.g., /my-subtopic-page) will work.
    • If your link does not have a scheme (http or https is not included in the URL, e.g., ://, the link will not be detected. 
  • The attached subtopic content should not be a file.
    • Image files (PNG, JPEG) and PDF files are not composed of HTML like a webpage. The subtopic content needs to be a blog post or live page to be crawled. Search engines parse the HTML of a webpage and pick up on <a> tags to identify internal links.
    • There needs to be a HubSpot tracking code on the subtopic content, which can only be added to HTML pages.

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