WHAT IS E.A.T AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR SEO

WHAT IS E.A.T AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR SEO

With Google being one of the most important search engines in the world, it is essential to understand what the algorithms are looking for to help you rank with your website and conduct effective Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). 

Google currently holds 85.4% of the market share in searches on search engines in the U.K., according to Statista, with Bing nowhere near a close second at just 9.27%.

Statista Quote: “This statistic displays the leading search engines in the United Kingdom (U.K.) ranked by market share for April 2020. Google had the highest market share by far with 85.43 percent of the desktop, tablet and console search engine market in the U.K.”

Statista: Joseph Johnson, May 13, 2020
Statista Stats

It is essential to conform to the quality standards set out by Google in this guide.

One factor that is a buzz in the SEO world is E.A.T. which stands for Expertise, Authority and Trustworthiness. 

What is E.A.T?

  • Expertise – Does the author of the website, page or post have expertise in the topic, which can come from an enthusiast, hobbyist or professional.
  • Authority – Does the site or author have authority in the subject, i.e. professional Doctor, Accountant or Lawyer etc.
  • Trustworthiness – Demonstrate trust in the content and author of the page/ website/ post, are they genuinely giving you information or just trying to sell you on Ads or steal your money. Is the website trustworthy, does it have an SSL Certificate (Secure Sockets Layer), HTTPS, is the contact information available, i.e. address, phone, email, etc., are these easy to access.

Below is taken from Googles Central Blog on Building High-Quality Sites and I have marked in Red all the factors that relate to expertise, in Yellow factors related to authority and in Green factors related to trustworthiness. 

Google Central Blog

Giving you a clear idea of what Google is looking for and why E.A.T is essential for ranking on Google. From the 15 factors Google has listed, I have highlighted 6, which directly relate to E.A.T.

Let us break each factor down and see what practical steps we can take to enhance the quality of the website, page or blog posts.

Expertise

Generally broken down in two factors:

Professional Expertise: 

Are you a professional in the industry you are writing about, do you have the academic background or built up experience through years of working in the industry?

Enthusiast or Hobbyist:

Is this a field that you are a genuine enthusiast and have acquired the knowledge to be able to write on the subject?

So, from the above, how does it fit in with a business or website owner to demonstrate their expertise? A way to accomplish this is:

  • Team – Add the people working in your business to your website, their working history and experience.
  • Your expertise – Add your background, experience and knowledge.

If you are a sole trader, freelancer, or a one-man-band business, then it is essential to add your profile on the site. 

You are perhaps adding a brief bio demonstrating your knowledge and level of experience in the About Us page. 

It will be enough of a signal to Google on the skills and knowledge you have in the industry.

In real life scenario, this will not only enhance your business in Google’s eyes but will also be beneficial to a potential client looking to take up your services or products.

Authority

It goes partly with expertise but also differs from it. 

For example, you may have expertise in a medical problem as you had been dealing with it yourself or looking after a loved one with that problem and you spent countless of months or years reading up on the subject. But does that mean you are an authority on the subject? No, the authority would be a Doctor or a specialist in that particular field.

To demonstrate your authority, you can take the following steps:

  • Add your certificates and credentials
  • Your professional title to your name
  • Add a bio linking to a fuller bio outside of your site
  • Links to professional registrar sites 
  • Reviews to the site

Trustworthiness

Is the website safe, is it free from viruses, can someone comfortably use their credit card on the website. Here are a few practical things you can do to build trust on the site.

  • Get an SSL certificate, it goes without saying, and it amazes me the number of new clients I see who still don’t have an SSL
  • Is your site HTTPS, it is all well and good having an SSL but is it configured correctly.
  • Make sure you have a contact page with an address, phone number and Email, preferably on the footer also, this way it gets displayed on all pages.
  • An about us page, with full details about the company and people
  • The team presented on the site
  • Links to the website from authority sites
  • Links pointing out to authority sites
  • Privacy Notice, Terms and conditions and cookies
  • Reviews from Google my business, Yell, trust pilot etc

Having all of the above will ensure that you have demonstrated trustworthiness to Google. Still, it is also essential for anyone who surfs your site that you are trustworthy and easy to contact if they need to get in touch with you.

Customer Reviews:

It is so vital in today’s ranking factor, having good reviews from places like Trust Pilot, Google My Business and Yell will enhance your credibility with Google and help to rank your site on the SERP’s

It also fits in with all the E.A.T. factors as it shows Google that real people are reviewing your business, which demonstrates your trustworthiness and can pick up any positive snippets related to E.A.T.

To put these factors into practice is not difficult for any website owner, and ultimately it will help your business with some of the SEO. But remember it is not just about Google or search engines, but also related to your potential customers to feel safe and have confidence in your products or services.

With so many ‘scam’ websites on the internet that Google filters away, you want to make sure your site does not get de-ranked or de-listed due to not adding some simple and useful changes to your website.

Make these changes, and the only thing that is likely to happen is your site will rise in the SERP’s!

References:

Statista Joseph Johnson, May 13, 2020
https://www.statista.com/statistics/280269/market-share-held-by-search-engines-in-the-united-kingdom/

Google Guidelines December 05 2019
https://static.googleusercontent.com/media/guidelines.raterhub.com/en//searchqualityevaluatorguidelines.pdf

Google Building High Quality Site May 06 2011
https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2011/05/more-guidance-on-building-high-quality.html

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