Google is in the business of providing helpful, relevant information when people search. In today’s Tech News Tuesday episode we’re talking about how you can use Google’s search quality rater guidelines to create better content in the eyes of Google and your audience.
Google’s E-E-A-T stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness
One of the ways Google decides if content is relevant and helpful is the concept of E-A-T, which Google has defined as expertise, authority, and trustworthiness. The newest update to the search quality rater guidelines in December 2022 adds another E however, and that stands for experience. So we now have E-E-A-T — or “Double-E-A-T,” if you prefer. Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness (E-E-A-T) are all important considerations in determining web page quality. We’ve talked about these guidelines before in a previous Tech News Tuesday episode, but let’s look at what E, E, A and T stand for.
Google wants to provide helpful relevant content to searchers, so evaluate your content like Google does.
New in the guidelines is Experience where Google is looking for first-hand knowledge and information about a topic.
The first E: Experience is the new one. As a content creator, do you have the necessary first-hand or life experience for the topic on your webpage. Have you visited the place, used the product, or done the thing?
Which would you trust, a product review from someone who has personally used the product or a “review” by someone who has not? Google is looking to see if the content includes first-hand knowledge or experience and not just repeating a manufacturer’s description for example.
The second E stands for Expertise. You’re an expert in what you do, so your content needs to show the necessary knowledge or skill for the topic of your webpage. Different topics require different levels and types of expertise to be considered trustworthy. There is a higher bar for what Google calls YMYL topics, which stands for your money or your life. Information relating to health and medical conditions fall into this category, for example.
The A stands for Authoritativeness. Is the content creator or website known as a go-to source for the topic? While most topics do not have a single official authority, Google is looking to see if the content creator is among the most reliable and trustworthy sources.
Google uses these examples: a local business profile page on social media may be the authoritative and trusted source for what is on sale now. The official government page for getting a passport is the unique, official, and authoritative source for passport renewal.
The most important member at the center of the E-E-A-T family is Trustworthiness, meaning the webpage is accurate, honest, safe, and reliable. Some Google examples of that would be that your online store has secure online payment systems and reliable customer service, and that your reviews are honest and written to help others make informed purchasing decisions, rather than solely to sell your product.
Google is in the business of finding answers for people, and your audience has questions about the products or services you deliver. The E-E-A-T guidelines help determine what is a good experience for the person looking for information, and your content should also strive to provide a good experience.
Links in this episode: Google doubles up on E with updated search quality raters guidelines (E-E-A-T)