What is Cornerstone Content?

seo cornerstone content

Cornerstone content is a term used to describe the most essential and authoritative content on a website, often serving as the foundation for the overall content strategy and architecture. Think of it like the bones of your SEO content. Or the bread in your sandwich.

This content is typically comprehensive, detailed and covers the main topics or themes related to the website’s purpose, providing a clear understanding of what the site is about and what information it offers visitors. Cornerstone content is also designed to be evergreen, meaning it is not subject to rapid changes and can remain relevant and valuable over a long period of time.

Often it refers to a set of high-quality, in-depth articles, pages, or blog posts that are considered the most important and foundational content on a website. They provide the foundation for the website’s overall content strategy and are used to attract and retain visitors and establish the website’s authority and credibility in its respective niche or industry. 

They are typically optimised for search engines and include internal links to other related pages and content on the website, making it easier for visitors to navigate the site and find relevant information. Cornerstone content is also designed to be evergreen, meaning it will not become quickly outdated or irrelevant and will remain valuable to visitors for an extended period of time.

So for my site, any in-depth blog post about copywriting would be pegged as my cornerstone content. 

How can you create cornerstone content?

Here are some steps to create cornerstone content:

  1. Identify your target audience: Understand who you are creating the content for and what their needs, interests, and pain points are. This information will help you create content that appeals to them and provides value.
  2. Choose a topic: Select a topic that is relevant, important, and closely aligned with your target audience’s needs. Consider topics that are comprehensive, in-depth and can provide comprehensive information on the subject.
  3. Research: Conduct thorough research to gather information and insights on the topic. Ensure that you are using credible sources and the information is up-to-date. I have an entire research module in my Blank to Brilliant online blogging course that will help with this. 
  4. Organise your content: Break the information down into clear, easy-to-follow sections and use headings, subheadings, bullet points, and images to make the content more accessible and engaging.
  5. Optimise for search engines: Use keywords in the content and meta descriptions, and make sure to include internal links to other relevant pages and content on your website.
  6. Write with authority: Write in a confident and authoritative tone, and aim to provide unique insights and perspectives on the topic.
  7. Promote your content: Share your cornerstone content on social media, include links to it in your email campaigns, and reach out to other websites and bloggers in your niche to request links back to your content.
  8. Make it visually appealing: Use images, graphics, and videos to break up large blocks of text and make the content more engaging and easier to understand.
  9. Keep it up-to-date: Regularly review and update your cornerstone content to ensure that the information remains accurate and relevant.
  10. Encourage engagement: Include calls to action, such as asking questions, encouraging comments, or directing visitors to other related content on your website, which promotes engagement and interaction with your content.
  11. Make it shareable: Make it easy for visitors to share your cornerstone content by including social media sharing buttons on your site.
  12. Measure its effectiveness: Use analytics tools to track the performance of your cornerstone content, including pageviews, bounce rates, and conversion rates. Use this information to continually improve and optimise your content.
  13. Diversify your content: While cornerstone content should form the foundation of your content strategy, it is also essential to diversify your content and create a mix of different formats, including blog posts, videos, infographics, and more.

As well as in-depth articles, there are several types of cornerstone content, including:

1. Ultimate guides: These are comprehensive, in-depth articles that cover a specific topic in great detail. Ultimate guides are typically longer than most other blog posts and can include images, videos, infographics, and other multimedia elements.

2. How-to articles: How-to articles are step-by-step tutorials that teach readers how to do something. These types of cornerstone content can be beneficial for both beginners and experts looking to learn a new skill or improve their knowledge.

3. List posts: List posts are articles that organise information into a list format. These types of posts are popular because they are easy to read and scan, making them perfect for sharing on social media.

4. Case studies: Case studies are real-life examples of how a particular product, service, or strategy has worked for a business or individual. They are often used to demonstrate the effectiveness of a particular approach or tactic.

5. Product reviews: Product reviews are in-depth evaluations of a particular product or service. They typically include an overview of the product, its features and benefits, and an assessment of its pros and cons.

Why do you need cornerstone content?

Cornerstone content is important for several reasons:

Establishing authority

Cornerstone content helps establish your website as an authoritative source of information in your niche or industry. Which, you know, I’ve discussed as important to feed into the EEAT system

Plus, it will contribute towards a better domain authority. This can help you attract and retain visitors, build trust with your audience, and increase your credibility.

Improving SEO 

Cornerstone content is ideally optimised for search engines, which can improve your website’s visibility in search results, attract more organic traffic, and increase your search engine rankings.

Don’t forget to put all the SEO trimmings into these blog posts. 

Learn to improve your SEO in 18 minutes!

Providing value

This kind of fundamental content is comprehensive, detailed and provides in-depth information on important topics related to your website’s purpose. Think of it like an in-depth research article or case study that you might find in a newspaper or respected magazine. 

cornerstone content

This can help you attract and retain visitors by providing value and meeting their needs.

Enhancing navigation

These types of blog posts include internal links to other related pages and content on your website, which makes it easier for visitors to navigate your site and find relevant information. 

And don’t forget the high-quality external links as well. Make sure you link to websites that have a higher domain authority than your site.

Creating a foundation

This is really the crux of it all: cornerstone content serves as the foundation for your content strategy and can provide a clear understanding of what your website is about and what information it offers to visitors.

Then there’s an opportunity to spoke other content off these fundamental pieces. 

Generating ongoing traffic

It’s designed to be evergreen, meaning it will not become quickly outdated or irrelevant. So make sure when you create it that it’s not time restricted or trend-based. Such things as “marketing trends of 2023” will not work.

This means it can continue to attract and retain visitors and generate ongoing traffic over time.

By having cornerstone content on your website, you can establish your website as an authoritative source of information, improve your search engine rankings, provide value to visitors, and enhance their experience on your site.

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