E-A-T is an important rule that marketers should be aware of and focus on. Discover what E-A-T is and why it matters.
E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness.
E-A-T is built into Google’s algorithm and the Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines.
E-A-T is considered “extremely important” by Google.
E-A-T should not be confused with “eat” or the foods we consume. Although I must admit that I am instantly craving a burrito.
If you work in SEO, you’ve probably heard a lot about E-A-T in the last several years.
But, exactly, what is E-A-T?
Is it a significant update, a minor change, or something in between? Is it necessary to overhaul your SEO strategy? Or can you safely disregard it like that half-eaten taco from last weekend?
In this blog, I’ll explain what E-A-T is, go into Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines, why it matters, and how you can help your site rank higher by feeding it E-A-T style material.
E-A-T is one of many guidelines used by Google to decide whether material is beneficial to readers and should rank well.
E-A-T was originally mentioned in 2014, when Google added the notion to their Search Quality Guidelines.
Google search quality reviewers were advised to look for:
- The expertise of the content creator.
- The authority of the content creator, the material itself, and the website.
- The credibility of the content author, the material itself, and the website.
In a nutshell, E-A-T is a feature that shows a page is of high quality and thus useful to consumers.
Here’s an example from Google of what they mean by E-A-T:
“High E-A-T news articles should be produced with journalistic professionalism – they should contain factually accurate content presented in a way that helps users achieve a better understanding of events. High E-A-T news sources typically have published established editorial policies and robust review processes.”
Is E-A-T considered a ranking factor?
No, E-A-T is not a ranking factor, although it can influence the rank of your material.
I know, it’s almost as perplexing as Burger King’s Whopperito.
E-A-T is a guideline used by Google to identify which information is high-quality and should be ranked higher, and it is part of various components of their algorithm. While it is not a direct ranking criteria, it might have an indirect impact on your total search ranks.
While it is significant, it may not be as important as some SEO professionals believe.
So, What Is the Importance of E-A-T in SEO?
Have you ever heard the expression “content is king?” Or should I just “produce high-quality content?”
Don’t respond to it. Because you, of course, have. On repeat, SEO professionals have been hammering for more material.
While those terms are well-intended, they make my eyes roll since they don’t actually tell us anything about what constitutes high-quality content.
More photos? More in-depth content? Alt tags aplenty? Better meta-data? The rest of the world may never know.
Google is now providing us with some insight into what they consider high-quality material, which might have huge consequences for content marketers and SEO professionals.
E-A-T criteria specify what type of material Google considers high-quality to genuine human reviewers who examine hundreds of websites.
Great material, according to their guidelines, should:
- Help users.
- Be developed by a professional.
- Be featured on a reputable website.
- Be trustworthy.
- Be kept up to date.
If possible, high-level expertise should be used to develop the content, but “everyday expertise” from people with real-world experience is acceptable when applicable.
Pages that spread hatred, injure, misinform, or deceive users may obtain a worse E-A-T grade from search assessors.
Here’s Your E-A-T Checklist: 7 Ways to Improve the E-A-T of Your Website
You now understand that E-A-T is not related to your mother’s lasagna, but rather to Google’s algorithm. You understand why it matters – and why SEO specialists are all abuzz about it.
But what does this imply for your website? It suggests you need to improve your content.
Here’s a seven-step guide to making your website more authoritative and trustworthy.
1. Introduce Yourself to Visitors
Google wants to know who provides material and whether that person(s)/website is a legitimate source of that knowledge, according to all three prongs of the E-A-T standards.
If you don’t already have an About Us or a Team page that describes your team – and who your content contributors are – now is the time to create one.
Author pages are a simple method to demonstrate your team’s Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness.
2. Collaborate with Experts to Create Material Google wants content from individuals who know what they’re talking about, not just nice content.
Rather than engaging ghostwriters to create half-baked material on high-click key phrases, collaborate with subject matter experts to build content that Google will trust.
This could entail interviewing a scientist, hiring a guest blogger, or collaborating with another company to disseminate high-quality research.
3. Make it clear what your content’s purpose is.
What is the purpose of your material?
Do you aim to educate, explain, persuade, or describe?
Use headers and headings that clearly state the aim of your content and use simple language.
For example, in these postings, I utilized headlines that are questions, so you know you’ll get answers to all of your E-A-T inquiries.
Don’t write long, meandering articles. Get to the point quickly and cover the subject as plainly (and comprehensively) as feasible.
4. Maintain Consistent Content Updating
Every day, we generate massive amounts of data.
By 2025, humans will generate an average of 463 billion GB of data per day. This means that content becomes out of date quickly.
Tools are updated, websites are taken offline, people get promoted, and Google tweaks the algorithm… again.
According to my observations, the average lifespan of internet material is two years, depending on the topic and business.
Include content updates in your SEO plan to keep your content accurate and up to date.
Every few years, update metrics, best practices, and check for broken links, especially for high-ranking content.
5. Provide a link to high-quality sources
If you want to be perceived as an expert, you must rely on solid data.
Use authoritative references, studies, and research papers to back up your claims and demonstrate that you know what you’re talking about.
Use reliable sources such as NCBI and JSTOR to discover studies to back up claims.
You can also provide links to tweets, papers, or reports written by industry experts. In this essay about E-A-T, for example, I used comments from Gary IIlyes of Google, who could (possibly) be regarded an expert on Google.
6. Consider Multiple Points of View
To be trustworthy, content should investigate challenges from different perspectives and consider how each perspective contributes to the larger debate.
For instance, if your content is about the best sorts of ice cream to eat, there’s a considerable probability that one type of ice cream isn’t ideal for everyone.
Someone may prefer ice cream made with locally raised eggs, such as this “Not Fried Chicken Ice Cream Bucket.” Another person might be torn between ice cream and a cocktail, so they’ll choose with OddFellows Ice Cream’s The Boozy Capsule collection. Or barbecue ice cream.
The options are limitless. However, the idea is to explain the various points of view on an issue in order to build trust with your audience and appear to be an expert.
7. Maintain Your Online Reputation
Your online reputation might have an impact on the credibility of your site and its content.
Keep an eye out for negative publicity and reply quickly to poor reviews to protect your brand’s reputation.
Claim all of your social profiles for your business name (so that no one else can take them!) and encourage customers to submit positive reviews about your company.
You don’t have to go wild trying to establish a large brand if it doesn’t make sense for your company, but make sure your good name isn’t tarnished.
Every time Google makes a change, some SEO professionals believe it heralds the end of the world, similar to the great Twinkie shortage of 2012.
The good news is that Google has stated unequivocally that E-A-T will not have a significant impact on search rankings.
It is, instead, an internal criterion that Google uses to decide if a piece of information is of high quality.
But that doesn’t make it ineffective. The E-A-T recommendations can help SEO professionals better understand their content development process and produce exceptional material that Google is more likely to rank well.