E-A-T is an acronym for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. E-A-T is a kind of metric to make sure the content provided to the user is correct. You should strive to have high expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness as possible to rank as higher at search engines. E-A-T plays a bigger role if the topic is about the reader’s money or health, such as tax advice, finance, and medical advice.
There’s a sheer number of metrics that Google uses to judge the quality of individual pages and sites. One of the metrics is E-A-T.
It is a concept based on three elements of quality:
The E-A-T paradigm emerged online in Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines 2013, a document published for Webmasters. In this document, Google sheds some light on what quality entails.
Focusing on E-A-T, Google puts emphasis not only on useful but accurate content.
Technically, E-A-T is not a ranking factor, such as page speed, mobile-friendliness, and keywords.
Nevertheless, Google gives preferential treatment to pages with content that demonstrates expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
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What Type of Topics or Content Does EAT Apply to in SEO?
Quick general answer — All!
However, some topics are subject to more scrutiny.
As mentioned earlier, the principle idea of E-A-T is to avoid misinformation. Users want relevant content that answers their queries as accurately as possible. And, this is what Google strives to achieve.
Well, content marketers providing subjective pieces of writing may not receive the same level of scrutiny as those doing topics dealing with:
- Illness prevention
- Legal, etc.
We’re talking about pages that could influence the reader’s happiness, health, safety, and financial stability.
In SEO language, we call them Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) topics/pages.
Let’s give an example for easy understanding.
Suppose you’re looking for expert recommendations on how to manage your diabetes.
Google will not surface content from a clueless or un authoritative writer without fact-backed information. It doesn’t matter how well you create good titles or optimize your content. That’s because any misleading recommendations could negatively impact a person’s life.
The Components of E-A-T
Let’s explain further how the concept of E-A-T works with each quality element.
What level of skill or experience does the content creator have in the topics they’re writing about? From the example above, Google will trust content from an endocrinologist or diabetes specialist than an enthusiast who demonstrates to know the subject matter well.
Everyday expertise is also accepted. In this perspective, we mean real-life experience in a specific subject. For instance, advice from a patient who has been living with diabetes for many years can be deemed trustworthy.
When it comes to the authority element, Google quality raters look at the reputation of your website.
Things that could affect a website reputation include:
- Reviews from both users and experts
- References and recommendations by professionals
- The credibility of information published on your website
Sites like Healthline and Mayo Clinic are considered reputable in matters concerning health.
Essentially, these are websites that other website owners will use as inspiration when creating their content.
Here, the raters are more concerned about three ingredients:
The assessment affects both your website and individual pages. Things like contact information, publisher’s details, and citing reliable sources used in your content creation process can help make a mark.
Ways to Improve E-A-T and Boost SEO
There are no clear-cut rules from Google on how to go about this. What’s more, the raters don’t give a score.
Fortunately, SEO specialists have turned to analyze the best-performing sites to see what sets them apart.
Here are some of the expert recommendations you’ll come across.
· Build more high-quality links: Links and mentions from websites that have already demonstrated E-A-T can work in your favor, according to Google Webmaster Trends Guru analyst Gary Illyes.
· Substantiate any claims: Always aim to produce factually accurate content as much as possible, whether it is a news-related or medical piece of writing. Include the sources from where you get content for your blog post. We mean using reliable sources that Google trusts to back up your facts.
· Update your content regularly: Outdated content can be misleading. So, make sure the content represents current facts.
· Share contact information: Your website should feature at least your physical address, phone number, and email address. This is ideal for YMYL pages published by online stores, banks, etc. As for bloggers, providing round-the-clock customer support would be helpful.
· Share your professional credentials. Let Google know your professional qualifications, experience, and the awards you’ve won. You can include this in the author bio or the ”About Us” page.
· Work on getting more positive reviews online: When people say nice things about your brand, it’s a sign you’re providing a positive user experience. Focus on getting on different review sites, not just Better Business Bureau (BBB).
Whether you create YMYL topics or not, E-A-T is worth paying attention to, even though there are no hard and fast rules on the concept.
Please note Google keeps changing its metrics to match user expectations. Therefore, always strive to stay relevant.
In line with that, provide solutions by placing yourself in the user’s perspective.
As a reader, would you feel comfortable trusting your content without necessarily having to look for another site for verification?