The term “cornerstone content” has been popping up in SEO discussions. WordPress users have likely seen this as they fill in their Yoast fields. Cornerstone content is the best articles on your site, the pages or posts you want to rank highest in search engines. Cornerstone content is part of your SEO strategy. These articles should:
- Be fairly long and informative.
- Provide insights from different blog posts covering everything that’s important about a certain topic.
- Inform—not necessarily sell products.
- Communicate your mission and describe your business.
- Be well written, updated often and rank for your most competitive keywords.
Cornerstone articles help target key search terms
A cornerstone approach can help you tackle your key search terms. If you write a lot of articles on similar subjects, you need to tell Google which of them is the most important. Otherwise, you’ll be eating into your own market share insearch. Providing an internal linking structure among your posts tells Google which article is the most important.
Cornerstone articles should be easily accessible on your website
Users should be able to click straight from your homepage to your cornerstone articles. All your other posts about similar topics should link back to their corresponding cornerstone article. This internal linking structure will increase the chance of your cornerstone content articles ranking in Google searches.
An example of how to implement a cornerstone strategy
I’m in the process of updating my own website to implement a cornerstone content strategy. I write a lot of posts about content marketing that touch on a range of topics, including SEO, branding, social media, industry information and content delivery. I’m a fairly disciplined writer, and I have more than 300 blogs on my website.
I’m writing one cornerstone article with an overarching title: SEO and Your Website: Writing Content that Search Engines Love. Whenever I write a new post on SEO and content, I will link this to the cornerstone article. I’m putting this article on my homepage to tell Google that this is the most important article about SEO copywriting on my site. This will increase its chances to rank.
Choosing articles to become part of your cornerstone strategy
If you’ve got a bunch of articles from which to choose for your cornerstone article, look for those that are the most current and informative. Do these target the keywords you most want to rank for? Check for readability—something on which Yoast scores us. Think short sentences and short words. Creating internal links is important, and Yoast also scores us on these. Make your copy easy to read and understand. Break it up with plenty of subheads to make it visually appealing. When you look back at what you’ve written, those subheads should tell your story.
WordPress’ Yoast is a plugin
For full use of Yoast’s cornerstone functionality, WordPress wants you to upgrade to premium level. If, however, you’re tired of getting nickel and dimed for apps, just follow the guidelines I’ve outlined here.