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Jennifer Slegg — What is E-A-T and Why is It So Very Important?

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These slides were presented at the SEMrush webinar "4 Hours of E-A-T | What is E-A-T and Why is It So Very Important?". Video replay and transcript are available at https://www.semrush.com/webinars/4-hours-of-e-a-t-or-what-is-e-a-t-and-why-is-it-so-very-important/

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Jennifer Slegg — What is E-A-T and Why is It So Very Important?

  1. 1. All About E-A-T And Why It’s Important in Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines Jennifer Slegg
  2. 2. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar About Me ▰ Jennifer Slegg ▰ The SEM Post ▰ @Jenstar 2
  3. 3. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar What are the Quality Rater Guidelines? ▰ Google’s guide to sites they want to rank well… and those they do not ▰ Enables Google to test algos before pushing them live 3
  4. 4. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Quick Facts About the Raters ▰ They CANNOT cause your site’s rankings to drop ▰ BUT… if they rate your site poorly, Google is working on algos to match ratings 4
  5. 5. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Quick Facts About the Raters ▰ 2017 ▰ 200,00 experiments ▰ Resulted in 2400 updates ▰ 2018 ▰ 654,680 experiments ▰ Resulted in 3234 updates ▰ 10,000+ raters 5
  6. 6. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Pro Tip! All examples in the QRG can be clicked on! 6
  7. 7. “ Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar You can view the rater guidelines as where we want the search algo to go. They don’t tell you how the algorithm is ranking results, but they fundamentally show what the algorithm should do. Ben Gomes, VP of Search, Google 7
  8. 8. Now… Let’s E-A-T 8
  9. 9. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar What is E-A-T? ▰ Expertise ▰ Authoritativeness ▰ Trustworthiness 9
  10. 10. “ Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Expertise… The expertise of the creator of the main content 10
  11. 11. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Expertise ▰ Why should I trust the author of this content? ▰ What makes this author knowledgeable? ▰ How well known is this author? ▰ Who else promotes this author? 11
  12. 12. “ Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Authoritativeness… The authoritativeness of the creator of the main content, the main content itself, and the website 12
  13. 13. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Authoritativeness ▰ Is the author an authority? ▰ Is the website an authority? ▰ How well known and popular is the website? 13
  14. 14. “ Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Trustworthiness The trustworthiness of the creator of the main content, the main content itself and the website 14
  15. 15. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Trustworthiness ▰ Why should I trust this author? ▰ Why should I trust this website? ▰ Who else has vouched for, linked to or otherwise supported this author/website? 15
  16. 16. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar How Does E-A-T Translate Into Rankings? 16
  17. 17. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar There is no E-A-T score or metric used in the SERPs Gary Illyes Pubcon Oct 2019 17
  18. 18. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Improving E-A-T does not necessarily increase rankings… it depends, there’s many factors at play. Gary Illyes Pubcon Oct 2019 18
  19. 19. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar If E-A-T is not a ranking factor… why bother? 19
  20. 20. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar 20
  21. 21. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Multiple “Baby Algorithms” work together to conceptualize E-A-T metrics. Gary Illyes Pubcon Oct 2019 21
  22. 22. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar E-A-T & YMYL are concepts for humans to “dumb down” the algo. Gary Illyes Pubcon Oct 2019 22
  23. 23. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar You know what we value? It’s in the Quality Rater Guidelines. What is it? E-A-T. We use it as our ground truth to figure out what’s a good quality result for our users. Google Webmaster Summit Nov 2019 23
  24. 24. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar New to Core Updates Blog Post 24 https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2019/08/core-updates.html
  25. 25. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Your Money Your Life & E-A-T 25
  26. 26. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Your Money Your Life ▰ Topics that impact happiness, health, financial stability or safety of users ▰ YMYL sites and pages are held to a much higher standard 26
  27. 27. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar YMYL Quick Look ▰ News & current events ▰ Civics, government & law ▰ Finance ▰ Shopping ▰ Health & Safety ▰ Groups of People ▰ “Other” Do you… ▰ Sell anything? ▰ Products ▰ Services ▰ B2B ▰ B2C You are YMYL 27
  28. 28. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Your Money Your Life Dealing in… ▰ Unproven medical claims? ▰ Debunked conspiracy theories? ▰ Anything that contradicts well- established expert consensus? You will have a VERY hard time ranking 28
  29. 29. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Your Money Your Life ▰ E-A-T is crucial for all YMYL sites ▰ Google weights E-A-T factors much higher for YMYL ▰ This includes links! ▰ Not as critical for non-YMYL 29
  30. 30. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Increasing your E-A-T is probably going to be a good thing if you are in the YMYL space. Gary Illyes Pubcon Oct 2019 30
  31. 31. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar How Important is E-A-T? 31
  32. 32. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Important? ▰ E-A-T is relative to the market area ▰ Have similar E-A-T to your competitors ▰ Work to BE the “Big Brand” ▰ And again: YMYL? Absolutely 32
  33. 33. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Important? ▰ BONUS – as you increase your E-A-T, you will earn more organically 33
  34. 34. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar What Makes High Quality E-A-T? 34
  35. 35. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar ▰ Well researched content ▰ Reputable authors known for accuracy and high quality ▰ Consensus on health and other controversial topics ▰ Evergreen or current 35
  36. 36. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Ways to Show Off & Create High Quality E-A-T 36
  37. 37. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Let’s Talk About Me ▰ Dual Biographies for all authors ▰ Condensed highlight version on article ▰ Full length detailed bio on an individual bio page 37
  38. 38. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Dress to Impress ▰ Social media links ▰ Awards ▰ Quotes ▰ Accolades ▰ Showcase awesomeness! 38
  39. 39. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar 39
  40. 40. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Let’s Talk About Me Use the same bio photo… ▰ Be recognizable wherever the author is. ▰ May not know name, but know pic 40
  41. 41. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Are You the Author? ▰ Active social media ▰ Engage with influencers ▰ Well placed collaborations or contributions ▰ Personal or company website 41
  42. 42. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Renting an Author for E-A-T 42
  43. 43. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Benefits of Popular Authors ▰ Traffic from their shares ▰ Traffic from author searches ▰ Earned links because the author is an authority 43
  44. 44. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Author Entities 44
  45. 45. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Very popular authors will have entities. It is not the author but the entity. Gary Illyes Pubcon Oct 2019 45
  46. 46. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Website “Me” ▰ About Us (especially non-brands) ▰ Be transparent! ▰ Show off your history ▰ Show off your team ▰ Show off your spotlight authors 46
  47. 47. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Website “Me” ▰ About Us ▰ Contact Us ▰ Customer Service 47
  48. 48. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar 48
  49. 49. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar 49
  50. 50. Reputation Key for both authoritativeness and trustworthiness 50
  51. 51. “ Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Use reputation research to find what real users, as well as experts, think about a website 51
  52. 52. “ Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Look for reviews, references, recommendations by experts, news articles and other credible information created/written by individuals about the website. 52
  53. 53. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar DYK? All quality raters MUST do reputation research for all sites and pages they rate. 53
  54. 54. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Reputation Health Check ▰ Company name / Product name ▰ Reviews ▰ Ratings ▰ Fake / scam (especially YMYL) 54
  55. 55. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Reputation Health Check ▰ Content creators ▰ Name ▰ Handle ▰ Duplicate content ▰ Reverse image search avatar 55
  56. 56. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Third Party Mentions ▰ Links not necessary (really) ▰ But links are algo signal for E-A-T ▰ News stories ▰ Reviews 56
  57. 57. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Third Party Mentions ▰ Any other mentions you can earn ▰ Sponsor a sports team ▰ Sponsor a community event ▰ Donations 57
  58. 58. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Bonuses of Third Party Mentions… ▰ Yay E-A-T ▰ Boost credibility ▰ Expand brand recognition ▰ Referrals ▰ “As seen in / on / at…” 58
  59. 59. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar And… Links 59
  60. 60. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar And… Links Google trusts sites linked to by other prominent sites for gauging quality content 60
  61. 61. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar And… Links Note: SIMILAR QUERIES AKA Don’t just focus on your money keywords 61
  62. 62. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Ratings and Reviews ▰ Everyone has negative reviews ▰ Overwhelmingly negative reviews is the problem ▰ Respond to negative reviews with facts not passion 62
  63. 63. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Be the Source Google wants to promote: ▰ Original reporting the provides info that would not have been known without the article ▰ BUT that also cites sources and original reporting within 63
  64. 64. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Food for Thought… 64
  65. 65. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Would you… ▰ Trust the author of your most popular article? ▰ Trust the content of your most important article – the article you want to rank the most? 65
  66. 66. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Would you… ▰ Like what the leaders in your industry say about your site? ▰ Like what the leaders in your industry say about your prominent authors? 66
  67. 67. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Would you… ▰ Like the search results if you searched for your brand / product and “scam” or “fake” 67
  68. 68. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Sources for More Quality Rater Guidelines Goodness ▰ Google Quality Rater Guidelines ▰ My QRG Update Notes at TheSEMPost.com ▰ Multiple Q&As where I interviewed Gary Illyes from Google ▰ My notes/Tweets from attending Google Webmaster Product Summit ▰ From Google: ▰ How Google Search Works ▰ How Google Fights Misinformation ▰ How our Quality Raters Make Search Results Better ▰ Google Webmaster Office Hours ▰ Googler Tweets 68
  69. 69. Jennifer Slegg @Jenstar Thank you! ▰ Jennifer Slegg ▰ The SEM Post ▰ @Jenstar 69

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