If you’re one of the millions of WordPress webmasters using Yoast SEO, you may have noticed the new Cornerstone content feature that was released in April 2017 as part of Yoast 4.6.
But unless you’re a seasoned SEO guru, seeing this new feature pop up might have left you confused and struggling to understand:
What cornerstone content is
Why you should care about cornerstone content
How you can identify cornerstone articles on your own site
Let’s fix that!
In this post, I’ll give you an introduction to cornerstone content and its importance.
Then, I’ll get into some tips you can use to evaluate your own site and choose your own topics for cornerstone articles.
What Are Cornerstone Articles?
While the cornerstone content feature is new to Yoast SEO, it’s by no means a fresh concept.
The idea of cornerstone content has been around since at least 2007 when Brian Clark wrote about the concept in a post for Copyblogger.
Cornerstone content, or cornerstone articles, is content that acts as a sort of “hub” for all of your more narrowly focused posts. It’s authoritative and comprehensive.
And it’s the foundation upon which the rest of your site is built.
As Demian Farnworth says, cornerstone content is “broad and wide,” while individual blog posts are “narrow and deep.” I recognize that’s a bit vague!
So let’s get into some more concrete characteristics of most cornerstone articles:
Long-form content: Cornerstone articles are typically the longest articles on your site.
Think anywhere from 2,000 words to 10,000+ words.
Long-form is not an absolute, though.
Copyblogger’s Copywriting 101 isn’t all that lengthy and still fits the other criteria.
High-traffic keywords: Because cornerstone articles are the foundation of your site, you want them to target your most important, highest volume search keywords.
Up-to-date: While you might not update every blog post, you should regularly update cornerstone articles to always keep them relevant.
Link hubs: When you write your regular blog posts, you want to link back to your cornerstone content as much as possible (which is what Yoast’s cornerstone content feature helps you do).