Earlier this week Google released a new edition of its Quality Ratings Guidelines–a manual that Google’s team of search result reviewers use when assessing the quality of Google search results–and the changes have the potential to seriously impact SEO practices. Among other details, Google is now strongly encouraging its raters to assess the quality of its search results by considering the “expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness” (EAT) of every link. Google has instructed their reviewers to give websites that demonstrate high levels of EAT a positive mark, and they have likewise instructed their reviewers to give links demonstrating a low EAT a poor ranking. Have you been putting informative and credible content on your site? If not, you should consider doing so to increase your google ranking.
What’s in an Expert?
Expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness can certainly be subjective qualities. Google recognizes that expertise will vary depending on the subject matter that a web page discusses. For example, an expert in creating and operating model trains may only undertake the activity as a hobby, while a medical expert on a website will almost certainly be a doctor. At Matador Solutions we like to say that credentials matter, and if you’re trying to increase your google ranking that can mean stressing the background details that qualify you as an expert in your field.
Trust the Experts
Google asks its reviewers to consider how trustworthy a page is by considering the ‘expert’ who wrote it. Almost always, a web page containing medical information and authored by a physician will be more trustworthy than a web page authored by someone who is not a medical doctor. However, someone who claims to have suffered a medical condition for an extended duration of time, and who shares information about it in an appropriate online forum with accurate and articulate detail, may also be considered trustworthy. Have you checked your company’s SEO recently? If it’s low, you might need some more expertise to increase your google ranking.
Authority through Additional Content
Google has also instructed their quality assessment teams to consider the “supplementary content” expressed on a web page. Supplementary content is information expressed which is not directly relevant to the main focus of a webpage, but which still provides users with opportunities to explore your website and gain meaningful information. Google defines supplementary content as anything that isn’t the main text on the page, or advertising. A supplemental piece of content could be any information that may be helpful or interesting to your users, whether its links to other related information on your website, or a widget explaining how many visitors your website has received. If your website doesn’t have any supplemental content right now, and you work for a non-governmental organization, you should seriously consider developing some meaningful additions to your website. If you need help brainstorming ideas for quality content, or assistance in drafting and optimizing the content to increase your Google ranking, call us at Matador Solutions for a free consultation.