Content Marketing

What Is Cornerstone Content?

What Is Cornerstone Content?

Cornerstone content is a page (or blog) on a website that has comprehensive information about an important topic.

These evergreen pages cover the most sought-after details surrounding a topic, and they are ultimately the content you want to rank highest for in search engines. As a result, they are one of the most important parts of your website. Cornerstone pieces are typically linked to the most throughout a website, since they have fundamental information that answers common questions readers might have.

Why Is Cornerstone Content Important for SEO?

Cornerstone content is a crucial part of optimizing your website for search, and it is what your entire site should be built around. Acting as a complete source of information on a topic, this core content creates an internal source for other articles to link to, establishing which pages are most important on your site. This is especially true if you write a lot of articles on similar topics. Cornerstone content is typically the most effective way to rank for competitive search terms.

Creating Cornerstone Content for Healthcare Websites

When it comes to medical and dental practices, one type of cornerstone content would be procedural pages, which provide valuable insight into what patients can expect in regard to their treatment. Shorter articles, such as blog posts, might be used to target other long-tail keywords and can link back to the more thorough resource you’ve created as the main procedural page.

Generally speaking, the best cornerstone content for healthcare practices:

  • Provides a comprehensive look inside what the topic entails
  • Answers frequently asked questions or solves common problems
  • Keeps the reader’s attention with compelling text and an easy-to-read format
  • Can be seamlessly accessed by visitors, such as through the site navigation
  • Reflects the mission and ideals of the practice

In addition, cornerstone content should ideally be organized in a way that can be expanded and/or easily revised over time—a valuable part of any content marketing strategy. By frequently updating cornerstone content, you are signaling to search engines that not only is the page an established authority, but it continues to provide fresh information to the public.

How Long Should Cornerstone Content Be?

While we wish there was a black-and-white rule for creating cornerstone content, the truth is every website will be different. The ideal length of cornerstone content will vary based on the topic(s) being discussed, but in general, more thorough resources tend to rank better. That said, remember that quality trumps quantity, so make sure your cornerstone pages are filled with original, high-quality content—not content drawn out for the sake of reaching a certain word count.

When determining how much information to provide, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you providing a complete overview of what the topic involves?
  • Is the content easy to understand and organized in a logical way?
  • Will one page cover the topic, or should there be multiple to split the focus?

In addition to this checklist, don’t forget that regularly refreshing and expanding your content is beneficial for SEO. Cornerstone content doesn’t have to be perfect from the get-go. Your goal should be to offer readers a valuable resource on a topic, while continuously improving that resource with added details in the future.

How to Organize Cornerstone Content

Since cornerstone content typically addresses multiple topics and questions related to its main theme, these pages tend to be longer. To ensure this content has good readability and provides an excellent user experience, it can be helpful to incorporate organizational components like headers to separate sections, complementary imagery to pair with text, and an index near the top of the page for simple navigation. Below are some cornerstone content examples that encompass these elements for optimal aesthetics, usability, and educational value.

Example of custom website design for procedure pages
Click the image above to see the full custom design.

At Rosemont Media, we refer to these visually and organizationally enhanced cornerstone content pages as custom landing pages, which have actually shown to improve conversion rates for many of our clients.

Need Help Optimizing Your Cornerstone Content?

Do you have cornerstone content on your practice website—and does it follow the best content qualities listed above? Learn how you can get the most from the core pages of your website by contacting our team at Rosemont Media. We look forward to discussing how cornerstone content can be optimized for your practice!

Editor’s note: The original version of this post was published on June 12, 2018.

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Katie is the Senior Content & SEO Strategist at Rosemont Media. Growing up in Illinois surrounded by corn fields, Katie started her transition west by attending Augustana College in the Quad Cities, where she received her BA in Business Administration and Communication Studies. After earning her degree, Katie made her way to San Diego to experience the bliss of living in paradise as she pursued a career in marketing. A Midwesterner at heart, she ultimately returned to Illinois to be closer to family. In her free time, Katie enjoys spending time outdoors, reading, and exploring the local brewery scene.