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How E-A-T is an important ranking factor for Google and how you can make the most of it

A few days ago I attended the first mobile advertising boot camp organised by Google. The welcome slide on the projector had the name of the speaker. Instantly, I looked up the profile of the speaker on LinkedIn. I did this to check the expertise and credibility of the trainer on the subject of Google AdWords.  In most cases, when we receive invites for industry or professional conferences, we are quick in going through the profiles of the speaker to ascertain their qualifications, accolades and expertise within the given field. This determines our willingness to attend the conference or listen to the trainer.

This is in line with Google, as its current rating guidelines expressed the massive importance E-A-T has to websites overall ranking. E-A-T in this case, is not in reference to the UK sandwich shop but an acronym for expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness. These are three elements that are used to determine the value of a website to users.  Let’s dive into each element and provide tips on how you can maximise them:

 

Understanding E-A-T and leveraging tips

  • Expertise: Jennifer Slegg from the Search Engine Marketing post wrote an interesting article on the Moz blog that shared an interesting insight on the essence of expertise. The ‘About Me’ ‘About us’ or ‘Meet the Team’ pages determine the expertise value of a website. The profile of employees in these pages should showcase qualifications, professional associations, working history and publications. Google also acknowledges expertise gained from life experience as opposed to formal training. In this regard its quality rating guideline reads thus: “If it seems as if the person creating the content has the type and amount of life experience to make him or her “expert” on the topic, we will value this “everyday expertise” and not penalise the person/page/website for not having “formal” education or training in the field.”

Tip: It is important to ensure the ‘About Us’ page expresses as many formal qualifications, training, work experience, professional accolades and memberships as possible. In addition, it is advisable to strive to have a good percentage of blog posts on a website which are a product of personal experience or result of a personal experiment. This goes a long way in showcasing the expertise value in Google’s quality rating.

  • Authoritativeness: In terms of authoritativeness, Google seeks websites that have a high authority on a given topic. The high authority of a website on a given topic is determined by the depth and frequency of its content. Websites that indicate statistics, research findings and a high volume of quality posts on a topic indicate an authoritative status. Longevity or the number of years a website has been active for could also play an important role on its authority. Your business could be offering a variety of services but it is important to allocate a great deal of time and focus to produce content on specific areas that will ensure Google considers you an authority.

Tip: The quality of contents on your website should provide facts, figures, case studies and in-depth articles. Consistently producing high-value articles on a given topic is also important in increasing your level of authoritativeness.

  • Trustworthiness: The trustworthiness of your website is an important factor in Google’s rating guideline. Google emphasises that trust in ‘Your money or your life’ (YMYL) sectors is an important determinant to how a page ranks. I will write a specific blog dedicated to what Google terms as the ‘Your money or Your Life’ websites. As a brief summary, websites that are classified under the YMYL category are those that provide products or service that impact on the health, happiness and wealth of people. Examples of businesses within the YMYL category are law firms, medical practices, e-commerce websites and a host of others. Trustworthiness is an important element to Google’s rating system (slightly more important for YMYL websites) and advise that the reputation of the author is an important factor. Google advises its quality raters to utilise Wikipedia and informational sources to ascertain the reputation of authors and the trustworthiness of the actual website.

Tips: Utilising a customer or client review system that encourages reviews on your website will have an impact on improving the trustworthiness value of your website. Regularly guest blogging on other websites, providing quality answers on forums will improve your online credibility and thus enhance your website’s trustworthiness.

Subconsciously, E-A-T determines how much time we spend on websites and how we respond to a given call-to-action. We are likely to read a blog from an author with the relevant expertise or life experience. We read the ‘About Us’ or ‘Meet the Team’ page to determine if a company has the right calibre of employees to deliver our desired business goals.

At Cariad Marketing, we love to eat cake but more importantly, we have a good understanding in optimising the E-A-T value of websites. Why not contact us on 01992 582 824 for more information?