E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authority and Trust and comes from Google’s Search Quality Guidelines. These are the factors Google uses to decide how much trust it can place in a website. To give the best experience to its users, Google promotes the websites it trusts fully.
What is E-A-T?
Google first mentioned EAT in 2014 and added this concept to the Search Quality Guidelines. It is not a ranking factor but it can impact your content’s rank. It can determine what content is high-quality and how it should be ranked.
Google determines E-A-T by the following:
- Expertise of the main content creator.
- Authoritativeness of the creator of the main content or the main content or the website.
- Trustworthiness of the creator of the main content or the main content or the website.
Expertise means you have a high level of knowledge in a particular field. It is not evaluated at the website or organizational level but at content-level. Google looks for content created by an expert on the subject.
It means whether you have the knowledge and qualifications to give reliable information.
For example, on a topic like ‘Saving money’ people would like advice from professionals.
Authority is the measure of how well you or your brand or your website and the content within your website stands apart. It should be accurate, true or reliable to be trusted. When people search the internet they are looking for information which they can trust. Google looks if your website is the leading authority or has authoritative content.
When people consider a website as a go-to place for information on a topic, it is called authority. Google quality raters see the authoritativeness of the creator, content and the website.
For example, for a topic like ‘Abdominal pain’ people will trust information from wellness experts.
Trust is how legitimate, transparent and accurate your website and its content are. Google measures trust in a website based on the backlinks it finds from the other domains. The higher the trust in the linked from domain the higher the trust it puts in the linked to domain.
Quality raters look for whether the website states who is responsible for the published content. It is important to provide the contact information on your website.
For example, online stores and financial transaction websites require a high degree of user trust. Therefore they need secure connections.
YMYL (Your Money or Your Life) websites should have the highest possible E-A-T standard. Google used this abbreviation for the sites that can impact your health, finances, safety and / or happiness. Examples of YMYL websites can be news and current events, civics, government, law, finance, health and safety and more.
How can E-A-T impact SEO?
The more your ability to follow E-A-T standards for your content the more are your chances for organic search visibility and ranking. Google uses signals to determine expertise, authority and trust which are ranking factors. E-A-T is not a direct ranking factor in Google.
The impact of E-A-T on SEO
As Google has given insight into what is called high-quality content it will help to improve content creation. According to the guidelines your content should help users, be created by experts, be posted on authoritative websites, be trustworthy and be updated regularly.
As the E-A-T content will be ranked higher it will help to improve the traffic and click-through rate. To create quality content you can hire SEO services in India.
These are the ways you can improve your E-A-T SEO:
- Build high-quality backlinks to your website from relevant and authoritative websites. This is an effective SEO strategy to demonstrate that you are a trusted authority in your field.
- If your website covers YMYL topics then the content should be up-to-date to demonstrate E-A-T. If you are not covering such topics then also it is better to give the latest information.
- The news and scientific articles should be factually correct to demonstrate a high level of E-A-T. The scientific article should represent a well established scientific consensus on issues where it exists. Other content should be fact-checked.
- Google tells quality raters to use online reviews to get information about the reputation of a business. You should try to get positive online reviews on sites that matter. Sites which people trust and use in your field.
- You can hire experts in your field to write for your website. If you are covering YMYL topics then it is mandatory. For non-YMYL topics formal expertise is not required. You can hire people who have a proven track record in the field or those known for creating high-quality content on the topic.
- You can get mentions from relevant and trusted sources as this will help to boost your E-A-T. The more your brand shows up on the authoritative sources on the internet the more Google will see you as a trusted website. You can earn mentions through guest posts, interview opportunities, by appearing on podcasts, hosting events, sponsoring charity events, creating high-value resources or launching new innovations.
- You should list out your experts in your pages on the website pages like About, Team and Contributors. Anything related to your field can be listed like education, awards, books authored, certifications and more.
- By putting your contact details on your website you can show that you are a real company with real people. You can include the ways people can reach you on your website.
- You can get a Wikipedia page as this can give your website a boost. A backlink from this domain to your website can prove to be a vote of confidence. The Wikipedia page is another place where you can establish your brand as an authority in your field.
- You can audit your brand and evaluate your position within your industry and find ways to improve its position.
- You can audit your existing content and check what your content says about your business. You should check if your older content matches your current level of expertise. You can revise your old content or create new content.
- You can build a framework for future E-A-T content creation. Your content should be researched, expertly written, include links to other pages on the website and signed off by an expert. You should create content to meet your customers needs and not for ranking purposes.
- You can send emails to your existing customer base and ask them to write reviews. You can link them to Google My Business page. You can also ask them to write reviews on your Facebook page. This will help to increase user’s trust in you.
- Your content must be easy to read and navigate and should be free of distractions for all types of devices. Devices like laptop, computer, desktop and mobile. Also your website loading time should be good. The faster the website the more quickly the users can find answers to their queries.
- Try to improve your website 1% daily. By working on your website on a daily basis you will deliver improvements to it. The expertise, authority and the trust you build will lead to improvements in the rankings and revenue.
Strategies to enhance E-A-T
You should be clear about the purpose of your content. Your headlines and title should explain the purpose of your content clearly. You should go straight to the point and cover the topic clearly.
You should update your content regularly and keep it up-to-date. You should check for dead links for high-ranking content and update the stats and best practices.
When you create content, cover the topic from all viewpoints. This will help to build trust with your audience and make you appear like an expert.
Your online reputation can affect your trustworthiness and therefore you should protect your brand reputation. You should make sure your good reputation does not get damaged.
You can leverage user-generated content and use it to establish brand loyalty. User-generated content can act as a trust signal.