The Page Layout feature is great, but still leaves the need for users in many cases to use sections and columns. Sections and columns are not WYSIWYG and attempting to train business users on their usage is simply painful.
There are plugins that go beyond Page Layout like Zen, but this is overkill.
Please consider making Page Layouts an object in the page and allow them to be nested. Then I can do everything that I can do with sections and columns.