Hopefully, you will have already realised we are not talking about eating food to help your SEO, much as that might appeal to us all. Instead, the acronym E-A-T stands for Expertise – Authority – Trustworthiness. Given that E-A-T, is something which Google’s algorithms are focussed on, it is something every website owner needs to understand.
Those three words mean that Google has moved on from just looking for quality content. A quick point to make here is that does not mean that you should let your standards drop and stop producing quality content. That requirement has not been abandoned, however, Google are taking things a step further.
Google is continually striving to make its search engine results as close to the user’s intention, as possible. Taking that a stage further it means they want the destination that users arrive at, to give them the best user experience possible.
Put yourself in Google’s shoes for a moment and imagine you had to determine what websites are going to achieve that goal, and which are not. How about fake news websites, or websites with lots of content, but otherwise full of affiliate offers for sale?
What about those with misleading sales messages or hyped up claims? And, how about websites that look like they offer content, but it is really just sales copy dressed up as content?
In all of these examples, and others like them, the content might tick all the boxes on the surface, but these are not websites that offer expertise, have authority, and many, although not all, are less than trustworthy.
If websites’ rankings are going to influenced by assessing their E-A-T attributes, how can you enhance your website’s, expertise, authority, and trustworthiness in Google’s eyes? If you think about it, these are not easy to quantify in the same way you can with keyword density, nor are they absolutes like whether you have a title tag or not.
Instead, you need to grow your E-A-T organically, and there are some simple ways it can be done. Some of the work will be in searching within your niche or industry and determining which websites clearly have their E-A-T already been established. These will be the authority sites, those with the top niche experts, and websites belonging to industry groups and organisations.
Some of the ways you can enhance your E-A-T will be onsite, and others will be off-site. On-site will include ensuring that you have a proper bio on your ‘About’ page with your areas of expertise and qualifications. Of course, your content has to be top-notch but also consider showcasing your expertise by writing about more advanced topics.
Writing a piece of content that is much longer than normal such as a 5,000-word article can rocket your perceived authority. Blog posts with the format, ‘121 Ideas For…’, or 115 Top Tips To…’ have been known to go viral and make the writer a recognisable name, almost overnight.
As for off-site, you should be seeking to build relationships with authority sites with a view to possibly writing a guest post occasionally. Large sites with large readerships provide an excellent opportunity for you to get in front a thousand or even millions to boost your authority.
Finally, having a physical location listed is something that reassures those who visit your website, including Google, that you are a legitimate business, and one that can be trusted.