In SEO, what does E-A-T stand for?

What factors does Google take into account while calculating E-A-T?

Now that we've addressed the question, let's talk about how Google evaluates a page's E-A-T. What does E-A-T stand for? At a high level, the Google search quality evaluator standards identify three important components

Unless you're brand new to the search industry, you've probably heard of E-A-T. Although the concept has been there since 2014, it has gradually evolved into one of the most important parts of SEO.

  • Unfortunately, it's one of the most puzzling, even for industry experts.
  • What is E-A-T SEO, exactly? Continue reading to find out what it is, why it matters, and how it affects your SEO efforts. 
  • Google rewards websites that demonstrate expertise, authority, and reliability (E-A-T).
  • E-A-T is determined in part by the creator, the content, and the website.
  • E-A-T is critical for websites that give YMYL (your money, your life) material.

In SEO, what does E-A-T stand for?

E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. The idea is based on Google's Search Quality Rater criteria, and it gained traction after the Medic Update controversy in August 2018. Google considers E-A-T as one of the variables in establishing a website's overall quality.

Page quality has a significant impact on where a page ranks in Google's organic search results, as you might anticipate. The most important characteristics used to determine the overall quality of a web page, according to Google's guidelines, are:

  • Purpose of the Page (Does it Have a Useful Purpose?)
  • Expertise, authority, and reliability are all significant considerations.
  • The core content's amount and quality
  • Information about the website or the main content author
  • The major content producer or the website's reputation

As a result, if all other factors are equal, a page's ranking should reflect its expertise, authority, and trustworthiness.

What factors does Google take into account while calculating E-A-T?

Now that we've addressed the question, let's talk about how Google evaluates a page's E-A-T. What does E-A-T stand for? At a high level, the Google search quality evaluator standards identify three important components:

  • The Main Content creator's ability.
  • The creator of the Main Content, the Main Content itself, and the website's trustworthiness.
  • The creator of the Main Content, the Main Content itself, and the website's trustworthiness.

Assuring information's accuracy, veracity, and utility

E-A-T stands for "exact, truthful, and helpful," and it is one of Google's methods for ensuring that it provides searchers with accurate, truthful, and beneficial information. Anyone can create a website and populate it with whatever they want. You don't need to be a doctor or have a finance degree to start a medical information website or write about investments.

Of course, this is advantageous in some ways. However, it does represent a problem for Google. People make important decisions based on the information in search results. As a result, Google makes every effort to ensure that such decisions are based on the most credible information available.

As a result, Google looks into the competency, authority, and reliability of the specific page content developer, the material itself, and the entire website. A comprehensive medical article produced by an expert doctor on the Mayo Clinic website is significantly more valuable to Google than a random blog post offering unsubstantiated medical advice.

What does it mean to be an expert?

Google recognises that E-A-T will appear in a variety of ways based on the type of website. Expertise is significantly different on a gossip site than it is on a news site. They also recognise that a person might have skill in a field even though they have not had formal training in it. Here's a quick rundown of the Google E-A-T guidelines, courtesy of the QRG:

What does the acronym YMYL stand for?

The abbreviation for "Your Money or Your Life" is "Your Money or Your Life." Google uses this acronym to classify pages that affect your money, health, safety, and/or happiness.

Because of the sensitive nature of the information and the potential consequences for users if it is misrepresented, YMYL sites are held to the highest E-A-T standards.

We have very high Page Quality rating requirements for YMYL pages since low-quality YMYL sites might have a negative impact on a person's happiness, health, financial stability, or safety.

Websites for YMYL come in a range of sizes and shapes.

The pages below are commonly referred to as YMYL:

  • News and current events: International events, business, politics, science, and technology are among the topics addressed. (Not all news, such as entertainment and sports, falls under YMYL, but you should still aim for a high E-A-T to increase the visibility of your material.)
  • Civics, government, and law spread information about voting, government agencies, public institutions, social programmes, and legal help.
  • Any financial advice or information, including investing, tax, retirement planning, lending, banking, and insurance.
  • Shopping content is ecommerce content that involves product research or research on goods and services to be purchased.
  • Content that contains or disseminates health and medical information or advice, such as hospitals and pharmacies, as well as drugs (emergency preparedness or content that defines or discusses dangerous activities)
  • People's ethnicity, race, or nationality, religion, age or disability, gender (gender identity), sexual orientation, or veteran status

The list could include additional subjective concerns and content depending on the context or how the material is given. Such products include parenting knowledge, housing or remodelling information, studying schools or universities, finding jobs, and fitness, nutrition, or weight reduction advice.

The Importance of E-A-T SEO

Google understands that what people read on the internet can lead to life-altering decisions. As a result, an incorrect source of information in Google search results can have real-world consequences.

You must proceed with caution if any of these YMYL categories apply to your web pages or material. Make it clear that it was written by persons with the necessary authority.

The more E-A-T criteria you can follow and apply to your material, the better your chances of ranking success in organic search engines.

In terms of measurable data, E-A-T is not a direct Google ranking criteria. Google, on the other hand, uses various ranking variables to determine competence, authority, and trustworthiness.

In February 2019, a white paper titled "How Google Fights Disinformation" highlighted the relevance of E-A-T in Google's results. Furthermore, there are 137 references to "E-A-T" in the current version of Google's Search Quality Rater Guidelines. It is, without a doubt, a significant concept.

A Google E-A-T score, on the other hand, cannot be determined by a single factor. Rather, it evaluates additional, quantitative qualities such as the quality of the author, the quality of the web page, the quality of the website, and the quality of the brand.

The following is how the whole procedure works. The feedback is fed into the Google algorithm by search quality raters, who study and rate the quality of webpages. Google's system can also precisely measure the signals associated with E-A-T. (e.g., backlinks).

How important is E-A-T to your SEO strategy?

If you've been following the latest Google search core algorithm changes, you've certainly noticed a consistent theme: bettering the user experience.

Because keyword stuffing detracts from the reading experience, Google has traditionally penalised it. They added mobile responsiveness a ranking criteria when the majority of people began using mobile devices to search the internet. Because it intended to give searchers additional protection, Google chose HTTPS over HTTP. Core Web Vitals was built to assess a rapid and seamless user experience.

E-A-T is no different. It's yet another way for Google to deliver on its promises to people.

E-A-T is a method for determining trustworthiness. It is used to determine whether a website and its individual pages deliver real value to the user. Google aims to serve up the pages with the most value in relation to a specific search query since that's how it keeps consumers coming back.

E-A-T SEO should be at the forefront of your SEO plan development if search engine optimization (SEO) is vital for your digital marketing success.

What can be done to improve E-A-T SEO?

Given how significant they are in organic search, let's talk about some Google E-A-T SEO suggested practises.

Fortunately, there are a few specific steps you can take to improve your website's content and ensure that it delivers the trust signals that Google (and users) seek. Keep in mind that if your site is YMYL, you may expect it to be held to much higher standards.

1. Build the right backlinks using off-page SEO.

Backlinks from relevant, high-authority domains are the bedrock of a good SEO strategy and one of the most effective strategies to establish your authority in your field.

If you work in IT consulting, a link from a teen fashion website is unlikely to help you. Scaling such approaches could, in fact, result in a manual action penalty. One insurance lead generation website realised this after building hundreds of thousands of low-quality connections on unrelated websites and seeing all of its page one rankings vanish. (Many were relegated to page 15 as a result of this.)

Off-page SEO, on the other hand, is not easy to master.

To earn links, you must consistently create valuable, original, high-quality material that others want to connect to. A 500-word listicle on your website once a month isn't going to benefit you much. Make an effort and invest money to position oneself as a leader (whatever the subject). Develop relationships with the proper outlets and influencers after that. Those beneficial backlinks will almost certainly follow.

2. Increase the amount of reliable publications that reference you.

In addition to backlinks, getting mentions in respectable sources can help you boost your E-A-T credentials. The more your brand/name shows on authoritative websites all over the internet, the more Google views you as a trustworthy authority. For further information, see our article on public relations and SEO.

According to Google Patent 8,682,892, "implied links" — i.e., plain text uses of your brand name — could be deemed a type of backlink. Incoming links are defined as "explicit links, implied links, or both," and they can be genuine links or plain text, according to the patent. In other words, while determining the quality of your page, all inbound connections – both explicit and implicit – from reputable websites are taken into account. A Google official, Gary Illyes, has stated that high-authority website mentions are evaluated and included into ranking decisions.

Now that you realise how valuable mentions can be, how do you go about securing them? There are numerous methods for increasing the number of mentions. Consider the case below:

  • Guest contributions to well-known websites
  • Make the most of interview opportunities.
  • Take part in podcasts.
  • Collaborate with people who have a lot of clout.
  • Give a presentation or organise an event.
  • Make a donation to a charity event
  • .Produce assets with a high monetary value.
  • Fresh ideas

3.Make sure the information is correct and up to date.

Unless your website's content is about something that never changes, you're likely to have pages with outdated or obsolete information.

Maintain the most up-to-date information in as much of your content as feasible. This is especially true if your website contain frequently changing content, such as news. Consider medical information, where keeping the content up to date with the latest medical knowledge and findings is critical.

Increasing the amount of reviews is a good idea (and respond to them)

Earning and boosting positive online reviews for your products or services is a proven marketing strategy. Similar reviews help to raise your site's E-A-T score in Google's eyes. A large number of positive reviews across a range of review sites (Google, Trustpilot, Facebook, Yelp, and so on) indicates that your company is regarded as trustworthy by customers.

Take the time to respond to all reviews as they come in, including the negative ones. Responding to your clients' input, in fact, can boost your credibility as a reputable business committed to customer happiness.

Google just released a product review update. The new version aims to encourage review content that goes beyond the standard templated information that is currently available online. These improved types of product reviews, according to Google, will be prioritised in its search results rankings.

The ultimate goal is to provide consumers with information that contains insightful analysis and original research, as well as content written by experts or enthusiasts who are informed about the topic.

5. Seek advice from specialists or hire them.

Google prefers reliable information. They appear to prefer content provided by someone with the appropriate credentials or experience. Expertly sourced materials are especially vital if your site is in the YMYL area. This is why medical experts write, evaluate, or both for many of the biggest health information websites (Healthline, Verywell, and others).

Working with authors that have a lot of real-world experience and credentials to back up their claims will boost your site's E-A-T.

"Hiring experts" in the E-A-T sense does not indicate hiring a copywriter who can write about a subject but has no real experience in the industry.

6. Make your credentials visible to the public.

Don't just label your contributors as experts without demonstrating their expertise. Verify their credentials and put them on your website with the content they provide. Include links to the authors' websites and social media accounts to assist Google understand the entities behind your work.

On sections like About, Team, and Contributors that detail the individuals behind your website, you should also include your specialists. Don't be scared to extol the writer's qualifications.

Your brand has earned the right to inform customers (and Google) if your writers have the proper qualifications, accreditations, degrees, or time to be recognised as an authority in a particular field.

Anything that relates to your area of expertise is acceptable:

  • Education
  • Awards
  • Books written by the author
  • Certifications
  • As a speaker, I've had the opportunity to participate in a variety of conference panel

7. Include your phone number and email address.

Although it may appear small, providing your contact information on your website proves that you are a reputable company with real people. The majority of websites that do not provide contact information are careless about their visitors.

On your website, list all of the ways customers can contact you, as well as your company's physical address.

8. Make a Wikipedia entry on yourself.

Believe it or not, having a Wikipedia page can help your site rank higher in search engines for two reasons.

To begin, Wikipedia adheres to a rigorous editorial process. As a result, a backlink from this website to your site can be considered a vote of confidence.

Second, a Wikipedia page gives you another opportunity to showcase your company as an expert in your field. You can talk about your accomplishments, share links to interesting news articles, and more. Your Wikipedia page is another indicator to Google that your brand is legitimate.

9. Perform a brand audit

In addition to being good business practise, auditing your brand will build the foundation for its trustworthiness. Examine how your brand is perceived in your industry and devise specific ways to modify it.

Examine your business's online presence, including search engine results. Do you have access to your social media accounts, blogs, and websites? What about third-party publications, association websites, community involvement, and the news media?

Take a look at the What is E-A-T section of this article. Are you certain you have all of the indicators Google seeks?

If your audit reveals a few faults, come up with a plan to improve your brand's visibility. The goal is to rebrand your company by emphasising its expertise, authority, and trustworthiness.

10: Conduct an audit of your content.

Unless your site is very new, you're likely to already have a lot of content, such as blog entries, articles, reports, case studies, data sheets, white papers, and lookbooks. Conduct a content audit to ensure that everything you've published complies with EAT standards.

For each page, you have three options:

  • Refresh the page
  • Take it out.
  •  Combine it with other related pages

Let's say you have a four-year-old blog post as an example. Make the required revisions to ensure that the material is still relevant to your target audience if it is out of date. Or is it completely out of date, generating no traffic or conversions, and hence unworthy of being updated? Then take it out. If it's a really bad blog entry, either substantially beef it up or connect it with other related blog entries to make the page more valuable.

Make sure to use proper 301 redirects when deleting and combining pages.

11: Develop a content marketing plan.

Consistent content creation is a terrific way to grow your influence. Whether you're blogging, podcasting, or generating videos, effective content marketing helps you to demonstrate your professional expertise in tangible ways.

The problem, of course, is that writing high-quality content on a regular basis takes a lot of time and work. As a result, a framework for content creation is necessary. As a marketer, you and your team need a defined, repeatable process for regularly producing high-value content.

Your framework should include a content calendar that includes the following items:

  • The type of content
  • The frequency with which you publish
  • Required resources
  • Personas, or target audience segments
  • you're looking for a keyword (s)
  • Each stage took a long time to complete (content brief, draft, edits, reviews, publication, etc.)
  • Who is responsible for each step?
  • The desired outcome or objective.

When you have a plan in place, it's much easier to reap the benefits of content marketing while improving efficiencies.

12. Advertisements should be kept to a bare minimum.

Including adverts on your website is quite fine. Google is well aware of this, and it benefits from it on a regular basis.

Keep an eye out for an excessive number of advertisements, especially if they are interfering with your reading experience. Having too many advertisements on your website can convey the impression that it is biassed and untrustworthy. Users may believe that everything has been paid for, causing them to lose faith in your content.

 13.Encourage individuals to go offsite.

It is not sufficient to merely provide outstanding content, but this is vital. You'll need to promote it to the right individuals after you've finished it. That is unlikely to happen without aggressive outreach.

Share it on social media, send it to your email list, optimise it for better search ranks, and work with others on it.

E-A-T and the Future of SEO

E-A-T will most likely be used to identify speakers, authors, websites, and businesses in a larger, deeper, and more robust manner in the future.

In 2020, Google was granted a patent named "Speaker Identification," which employs speech recognition technology to assist in the identification of specific speakers. This might be utilised with YouTube videos, webinar recordings, and media interviews in the future, for example. And this is most likely just the start.

The Search algorithm will continue to evolve through big fundamental modifications and micro-adjustments. Google's goal, on the other hand, hasn't changed. Google's algorithm continues to improve at detecting exactly what users are looking for and giving the most relevant results in order to achieve this goal.

This goal is well linked with Google's E-A-T strategy.

If you know what your audience wants and can deliver it to them in an informed, authoritative, and trustworthy manner, your SEO efforts are more likely to succeed.

If E-A-T is one of the major pillars of your SEO strategy, you'll always be in a good position for success.

E-A-T Frequently Asked Questions 

What does the acronym E-A-T stand for?

E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. The idea is based on Google's Search Quality Rater criteria, and it gained traction after the Medic Update controversy in August 2018. Google considers E-A-T as one of the variables in establishing a website's overall quality.

What does E-A-T have to do with SEO?

E-A-T is a tool for analysing whether a website and its individual pages are trustworthy sources of information on a certain topic that deliver real value to users.