The volume of information available online continues to increase daily. According to Statista, the World Wide Web contains approximately 64 zettabytes of data. Google has indexed five terabytes out of that massive number, as reported by the company’s CEO, Eric Schmidt.
With this enormous amount of information, the platform’s algorithm demands continuous innovation to provide the most relevant and trustworthy results. Through regular updates, user experience is constantly improved with accurate, valuable and authoritative content.
Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines (QRG) are highly significant in shaping the search environment and determining the ranking of websites. Last year, the world’s leading search engine once again heightened its methods of assessing online information. The latest buzz is all about the addition of a new “E” in E-A-T – a critical aspect of Google’s ranking considerations. This inclusion has sparked curiosity and speculation among digital marketers and web admins alike.
Below, we unravel the significance of this enigmatic “E” in the new Quality Rater Guidelines and how it affects the expectations regarding content quality.
Here’s what we’ll be covering in this article:
• Understanding the Search Quality Rater Guidelines (QRG)
• What Is E-E-A-T?: Unveiling the New Element
• The Role of “Experience” in Google’s Page Quality Rating
• The Challenge: Producing SEO High Quality Content During the Emergence of AI
• Google’s Future Direction With E-E-A-T and Quality Rater Guidelines
But first, let’s explore QRGs and their significance in giving first-rate search results to internet users.
Understanding the Search Quality Rater Guidelines (QRG)
Google’s search quality rater guidelines (QRG) are a set of specifications that provide detailed criteria for the company’s team of human “quality raters.” These guidelines help them evaluate the relevance of the results. The data is then used to refine the platform’s content assessment methods. Although the QRG doesn’t directly impact rankings, it’s an essential set of principles that helps Google deliver top-notch and relevant content to those who need it.
What Is E-E-A-T?: Unveiling the New Element
E-A-T is a concept introduced by Google in its Quality Rater Guidelines. It is a critical consideration in how the platform ranks web pages, particularly for topics that could significantly impact a user’s health, safety or financial well-being.
E-A-T stands for:
• E (Expertise): Refers to the level of knowledge demonstrated by the content creator or the author of a web page. High quality content should be created by individuals or organizations with sufficient expertise in the subject matter.
• A (Authoritativeness): Relates to the reputation and authority of the content creator and the website. Websites that are considered authoritative are those that have earned trust and recognition within their respective industries. This authority can be established through high-quality content, reputable links and positive mentions from other authoritative sources.
• T (Trustworthiness): Measures the reliability and credibility of the information presented on a web page. Users should feel confident that the information provided is accurate, reliable and free from deceptive practices.
In December 2022, Google added a new E to its E-A-T framework: Experience.
The Role of “Experience” in Google’s Page Quality Rating
Google search quality rater guidelines now embrace the E-E-A-T framework.
“The new ‘E’ stands for Experience and is a measure of real-world experience a website author has on a topic. This is an important factor as it shows Google recognizing expertise apart from formal education or credentials,” said Steve Hoenig, an SEO Engineer at Thrive Internet Marketing Agency.
Difference Between Experience and Expertise
Often, experience and expertise are terms that are used interchangeably when describing SEO high quality content. But in terms of the new Google search quality rater guidelines, the two have distinct meanings.
Expertise is the extent to which the content creator has the necessary mastery of the topic, which is the result of education and training. Experience, on the other hand, is the knowledge or skill gained from participating in or being exposed to a specific activity or event.
For example, a patient who survived cancer has the right experiences to offer advice and share their insights about the affliction. However, this person may not have formal medical expertise in cancer treatment like a trained doctor. While the cancer survivor and the healthcare professional can produce high-quality content about the sickness, they are most likely evaluated differently based on experience and expertise.
The Challenge: Producing SEO High Quality Content During the Emergence of AI
Creating content that aligns with the current Google quality rater guidelines has become more challenging with the emergence of generative artificial intelligence (AI). While this new technology presents opportunities for accelerated efficiency, it also comes with challenges concerning the level of quality that fits SEO standards.
To pass the Google quality rater guidelines, content must display experience, expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness, which AI-generated tools can’t replicate. AI does not possess the personal connection humans can produce within their SEO friendly content.
In February 2023, Google published a post addressing artificial intelligence and page quality rating concerns. The company’s advice to content creators considering AI generation is to publish original, high-quality content demonstrating the E-E-A-T qualities.
How To Demonstrate E-E-A-T For Superior Content Quality
Knowing what is E-E-A-T forms the foundation of superior content quality, which is crucial since it directly impacts a site’s visibility.
When asked how website owners and content creators can align their content with the current SEO standard, Hoenig said, “[They] must show in their content that they have real experience in the industry they’re writing about. For example, using language that implies that they used a product or service or are in a certain industry by adding terms such as ‘We tested the product’ or ‘In our industry, we find that,’ etc.”
To further demonstrate your experience, expertise, authority and trustworthiness in a way that fulfills Google search quality rater guidelines, here are some tips to remember.
Reach Out to Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)
The best way to establish authority is to collaborate with subject matter experts. SMEs possess in-depth knowledge and insights that can add immense value to the content. Interviewing experts, featuring guest posts or citing their expertise can elevate the credibility of your articles and attract a more engaged audience seeking authoritative information.
Write for Humans
Remember that your target audience is human, not the algorithm. It’s crucial to create SEO high quality content that speaks directly to your readers while addressing their needs and concerns. Providing valuable insights, practical tips and actionable advice is essential to improving your site’s page quality rating.
Showcase Author Experience
Websites must highlight the expertise of its content creators, authors and contributors to demonstrate their authority in their respective industry. Include author bios that emphasize their qualifications and accomplishments in the subject matter. Demonstrating the expertise of your team builds trust and credibility with your readers.
Fact-Check and Provide Citations
Thoroughly fact-check your content to ensure accuracy and reliability. Support your claims with reputable sources and provide citations for data, statistics or research you referenced. Citations not only back up your statements but also strengthen the credibility of your content.
Hire SEO Content Writing Services
Investing in professional SEO content writing services can make a significant difference in the quality and effectiveness of your content. Writers with a proven experience of producing SEO friendly content can optimize your articles to meet Google Quality Rater Guidelines while maintaining a readable and engaging tone.
Google’s Future Direction With E-E-A-T and Quality Rater Guidelines
As the digital landscape continues to evolve, Google is expected to remain the world’s leading provider of valuable information. The company’s mission has always been to continually deliver search results that are timely, relevant and high quality. With this in mind, Google will likely continue building on the foundation of E-E-A-T to refine its Quality Rater Guidelines further.
One potential direction Google may take is to improve further its algorithms’ ability to recognize and assess expertise and authoritativeness in various subject areas. This could involve more advanced natural language processing and analyzing online reputation signals. In addition, the company is also expected to double its efforts in combating misinformation and low-quality content. As the algorithm becomes more sophisticated, it may better detect and demote information that lacks accuracy or provides misleading information.
Over the years, Google has always placed user intent at the center of its optimization efforts by encouraging creators to craft unique and compelling content. Yet, simultaneously, the search engine has remained vague in defining what “unique” and “compelling” are.
“The best way to predict where Google might go on the E-E-A-T front is to think of what YOU would like to see when you search for something. You want the content you’re reading to be written by someone with expertise, and you want to know you can trust the information you’re receiving.” Hoenig said.
He then followed up his statement by giving helpful advice to all writers.
“Leave no stone unturned when writing content – think of all the questions and concerns the searcher might have, demonstrate your expertise in the industry and Google will likely reward you with higher rankings.”
Boost Your SEO Initiatives With E-E-A-T Compliant Content Writing Services
Understanding and implementing the E-E-A-T principles in web content is vital to achieving visibility in the digital realm. The recent addition of “Experience” demonstrates Google’s continued focus on delivering the most relevant and reliable search results. Adapting to these changes and staying informed about the latest trends is essential for content creators and website owners seeking lasting success in SEO.
It’s time to leave your mark in the digital landscape with E-E-A-T compliant content. Thrive is an award-winning SEO agency that can help you dominate Google. Partner with us and watch your web rankings soar to the top spot. Contact us to learn how our content writing services can transform your online presence and boost your local SEO endeavors.