How To Use E-E-A-T in SEO
January 8, 2024
Summary: E-E-A-T guidelines are an important parameter to rank your content. If you are still confused about what exactly is E-E-A-T, this guide is your savior. Additionally, we touch on AI-generated content’s role in E-E-A-T and emphasize the long-term benefits of prioritizing it for trust and authority-building.
For SEO professionals, the quest for high rankings is a struggle with Google algorithm updates and ever-evolving search engine parameters.
In 2022, another factor emerged as a critical differentiator: E-E-A-T, encompassing Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. While its importance is undeniable, a recent survey by Search Engine Journal revealed that 57% of SEO professionals find building E-E-A-T a significant challenge.
This begs the question: In a world where information is in abundance, how do we cultivate content that resonates with audiences and at the same time earns the trust of search engines?
This blog post delves into the intricacies of E-E-A-T, exploring practical strategies for crafting content that not only informs but also inspires confidence. Create content that leads to increased user trust, brand reputation, and conversion rates.
What Is Google E-E-A-T in SEO?
E-E-A-T stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. It’s a framework used in SEO to evaluate the quality and credibility of online content.
Experience here means showcasing relevant background and knowledge through your content. What makes it crucial? It builds trust with the audience. For instance, if a health article is written by a qualified doctor, it adds credibility, and a reader automatically trusts it more.
Expertise emphasizes demonstrating specialized knowledge in a specific field or industry. It shows an in-depth understanding and mastery of the subject matter. This expertise enhances the content’s credibility and establishes the author as a reliable source of information.
Authoritativeness involves becoming a recognized authority in a particular niche. Being viewed as an expert and having a strong reputation can significantly impact search engine rankings. This authority signals to search engines that the content is coming from a trustworthy and valuable source.
Trust is an important factor for a reader. It gives confidence to both search engines and users. When content consistently proves reliable and honest, it enhances trust with both the audience and search engines, leading to better online visibility.
History of E-E-A-T
The evolution of EEAT from EAT is a fascinating story about Google’s ongoing quest to deliver the best possible search results.
Google followed a timeline for all the updates. Here it goes like this:
March 2013: Google officially publishes its Search Quality Rating Guidelines, which detail criteria used by human raters to assess website quality. These search quality rater guidelines initially included the concept of “EAT” (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness) as one of the factors for evaluating YMYL content (Your Money, Your Life) websites.
August 2018: Google confirmed a core update that significantly emphasizes EAT. This update is widely credited with marking a shift towards content demonstrating higher expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
December 2022: Google introduces “EEAT” by adding an extra “E” for “Experience.” This change reflects a deeper understanding of expertise, including the importance of firsthand experience and practical knowledge through content.
How Google’s Quality Ratings Evaluate E-E-A-T
There are a few parameters Google Search considers to evaluate the E-E-A-T score. According to those factors, it is categorized as Lowest, Lacking, and High-level EEAT.
Content with low E-E-A-T often lacks clear authorship or relevant credentials, presenting information without substantiated sources or expertise. The reasons for having low EEAT could be:
- Outdated, inaccurate, or even misleading content.
- Lacking depth or authority in the subject matter.
Lack of E-E-A-T in the content may result in ambiguity or insufficient credibility markers. The reasons could be;
- Content might not adequately showcase the author’s expertise or experience in the field.
- The author’s bio or profile is not updated with relevant credentials or certifications.
Various positive attributes characterize the High Level of E-E-A-T. It demonstrates a clear and authoritative authorship, supported by relevant credentials and expertise.
- This content presents accurate, up-to-date information from reputable sources, providing comprehensive insights that cater to user intent.
- High E-E-A-T content tends to rank well on search engines due to its perceived trustworthiness, credibility, and relevance.
E-E-A-T Impact on SEO
- Although e-e-a-t is not a direct ranking factor, websites with high E-E-A-T scores are 2.5 times more likely to rank on the first page of Google for YMYL topics. (Source: Brightedge, 2023 Local SEO Study)
- A study by Backlinko found that the average domain authority of websites in the top 10 for YMYL keywords is significantly higher than for non-YMYL keywords. This suggests a strong correlation between E-E-A-T and authority. (Source: Backlinko, The 2023 YMYL SEO Study)
How to use E-E-A-T to improve your ranking
While E-E-A-T isn’t a direct SEO ranking factor like backlinks or page speed, it plays a crucial role in shaping how search engines evaluate and rank content.
Here’s how E-E-A-T factors into the equation:
1. Signal Quality and Relevance:
- A seasoned author with a proven track record in the field to signify reliable and trustworthy information. This signals to search engines that the content is coming from an industry professional and that the facts and stats mentioned are correct.
- Demonstrate knowledge, first-hand experience, and understanding of the topic through research, citations, and insightful analysis building trust and authority. This tells search engines the content is likely to be accurate and informative.
- Being recognized as a thought leader or trusted source in the field earns backlinks and mentions from other reputable websites. This acts as a vote of confidence for search engines, boosting the content’s ranking potential.
- Maintain a transparent and ethical approach to content creation and foster user trust. This signals to search engines that the content is reliable and unbiased, making it more likely to rank as important for the YMYL topic.
2. Indirectly Influence other Ranking Factors:
- E-E-A-T encourages well-researched, accurate, and insightful content. This naturally leads to better user engagement and satisfaction, which are positive signals for search engines.
- High-quality content from an authoritative source is more likely to attract backlinks from other reputable websites. This strengthens the website’s overall authority and domain rating, boosting its ranking potential.
- Trustworthy content naturally leads to more shares, comments, and longer dwell times. This signals to search engines that users find the content valuable, increasing its ranking potential.
SEO Tips for Achieving Highest E-E-A-T
Building E-E-A-T for the topic is an ongoing process with search algorithms but these tips can help you get top results:
Create Content that Captivates Attention
- Research, research, research! Go beyond surface-level summaries and offer insightful analysis, diverse perspectives, and original information. Also, cite credible sources and data to back your statements.
- The extra E in E-E-A-T stands for “experience”. Hence, infuse your content with your unique knowledge and experience. Share case studies, personal anecdotes, and practical tips that showcase your mastery of the topic.
- Craft content that’s accessible and engaging for your target audience. Avoid jargon, complex sentence structures, and excessive technical terms. Remember, clarity reigns supreme.
- Bring storytelling into your content and SEO. Keep the language NLP (Natural Language Processing) – use simple language, the kind that flows like a human conversation, not like a robot writing. Amplify the good content with visuals, examples, and humor to break up text and make your content reader-friendly.
Flaunt Your Expertise
- Make your “About Us” page a mini-encyclopedia of your team’s credentials. Highlight qualifications, awards, and industry experience in numbers. Include bios with photos and links to personal LinkedIn profiles.
- Contribute to high-authority websites related to your niche. This not only shows expertise but also earns valuable backlinks and builds your online reputation.
- Actively engage on social media platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter (X), whichever is more relevant to your field. Share insights, participate in discussions, and answer user questions. This positions you as a thought leader and builds trust.
Get Quality Backlinks (not Quantity)
- Create evergreen content that naturally attracts backlinks from reputable websites or websites with high domain authority. Offer insightful research, unique data, or actionable tips that others can’t resist referencing in their content.
- Don’t spam! Identify relevant websites with broken links or outdated content and offer your high-quality resources as replacements.
- Partner with skilled content creator in your field for joint projects or co-authored articles. This can lead to cross-promotion and backlinks from multiple valuable sources.
Beyond the Tips
- E-E-A-T isn’t static. Keep abreast of evolving search engine algorithms and industry trends to adapt your content strategy accordingly.
- Transparency and honesty can improve your E-E-A-T. Disclose affiliations, avoid plagiarism, and fact-check every claim meticulously.
- Respond to comments, answer questions, and address concerns promptly. This fosters a positive online presence and enhances user trust.
What about E-E-A-T in the AI environment?
Google wants a nuanced approach to AI-generated content. Websites are churning out thousands of content every day using AI.
While Google has advised against publishing AI content directly without human oversight, they haven’t outlawed its use altogether.
As Danny Sullivan from Google emphasized, AI content is acceptable as long as it is approved by a human editor and thorough fact-checking. That means, Yes, AI content also has to demonstrate E-E-A-T to rank higher on search engines.
Can ChatGPT content provide E-E-A-T standards?
Well, this is a million-dollar question. Websites and brands are using ChatGPT to ease their content creation process. But if it’s not following the E-E-A-T guidelines by Google, it’s not serving the purpose.
While ChatGPT has the potential to contribute to some aspects of EAT, it has limitations in terms of the additional ‘Experience’ part. Here’s a breakdown:
Potential benefits of ChatGPT:
- Efficiency: ChatGPT can generate large amounts of content quickly, saving time and resources. This can help generate ideas, outline content, or create drafts following Google’s search quality guidelines.
- Grammar and fluency: ChatGPT excels at producing grammatically correct and fluent text, ensuring e-e-a-t signals of content are reader-friendly.
- Engaging content: Google values content that is entertaining and engaging, improving user experience and attracting more readers.
Limitations of ChatGPT for EEAT:
- Lack of depth and expertise: ChatGPT content can sometimes lack depth and originality, as it primarily draws from its training data. This can make it difficult to establish genuine expertise on a specific topic.
- Factual accuracy: While ChatGPT is generally good with factual accuracy, it can still generate incorrect or misleading information, especially on complex or niche topics. Careful fact-checking is crucial.
- Transparency and citation: ChatGPT doesn’t automatically provide citations or sources for its information, which is an important factor for site’s e-e-a-t, making it difficult to verify its claims and assess its trustworthiness.
Here are some recommendations for using ChatGPT responsibly:
- Focus on well-researched topics: Choose topics where you have existing expertise or can easily conduct thorough research. Once, you get the content ready, edit it according to your experience demonstrating e-e-a-t to Google.
- Fact-check and edit carefully: Use Google and verify the accuracy of the content before publishing. High e-e-a-t websites always keep data a priority in their SEO efforts.
- Cite sources and attribute information: Bring attention to Google on where information is coming from, even if it’s not directly quoted.
- Supplement with human expertise: Combine ChatGPT content with insights Google wants to see for that topic and analysis to add depth and authority.
If you use ChatGPT strategically, your content can reach an appropriate level of e-e-a-t. However, it’s important to remember that human expertise and oversight remain essential for building genuine trust and authority online.
Why Prioritize E-E-A-T in Your SEO Strategy?
Focusing on E-E-A-T is not just about ranking – it’s about building trust with your audience and search engines. By investing in high-quality content and cultivating your online reputation, you lay the foundation for sustainable SEO success.
Apply the tips shared and transform your technical SEO strategy from just ranking algorithms to building genuine trust and authority.
Remember, E-E-A-T is a journey, not a destination. Keep up with future Google algorithm updates, and stay true to your content for strong e-e-a-t.
For more information or questions related to SEO or content optimization, reach out to us. We’d be happy to assist you!