No, we aren’t referring to your lockdown comfort-eating, although that might seem enough of a worry for you. What the title of today’s article is instead about, is the acronym ‘E-A-T’, which stands for ‘expertise’, ‘authoritativeness’ and ‘trustworthiness’.
These are the qualities that all online brands need to aspire to for their content these days, especially if they wish to win trust from their target audiences and achieve high search engine rankings (which we’re presuming basically every brand on the web would want).
The acronym itself isn’t new – ‘E-A-T’ has been talked about since 2014, when Google’s Search Quality Guidelines were leaked – but it’s become widely regarded by SEO marketing experts as an especially big deal now. In short, if your brand is to have a healthy online waistline, it needs to watch what it E-A-Ts…
As easy as E, A, T
Before we go any further, let’s explain the essence of each of the three prongs of ‘E-A-T’:
- Expertise: Whenever you look for information online, we’re sure you’ll want to receive it from experts, instead of people who don’t know what they’re talking about. Sure enough, Google prizes this as well when it is assessing the value of online content. Expertise is especially important for financial, legal and medical websites, and you can demonstrate it through your own brand’s content by being both truthful and useful.
- Authoritative: Does your online content show that you are an authority in your field? The expertise of the person writing the content will be a big contributor to this, but so will any credentials that they have, such as qualifications and a longstanding track record in the given field or sector.
- Trustworthiness: It’s also crucial for users to feel that they can place their trust in your brand, particularly when it is one that they need to put a lot of trust in, such as an ecommerce site that is asking them for their debit card or credit card details. Your site needs to reassure visitors that it is a safe and trustworthy place, which is why implementing a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate on your site might be one of the first things that you do to build such trust.
But why does E-A-T matter that much, anyway?
So, you now know what E-A-T is. But why is it actually all that important a thing for your brand to pay attention to, given that the Google quality rater guidelines don’t determine where your site’s pages rank?
The short answer is that E-A-T is a key means by which the value of a given page is assessed. Quality raters consider E-A-T when assessing the quality of a particular site or page, and if they judge that a user would feel comfortable reading, sharing and recommending the content, the site or page can be regarded as having a high level of E-A-T.
Remember that, regardless of rankings, E-A-T greatly affects visitors’ experience of your brand online, especially when it comes to ‘Your Money or Your Life’ (YMYL) pages – in other words, pages that relate to such important matters as medical, legal and financial advice, with the profound impact these subjects have on people’s happiness, health and wealth.
Get your site’s E-A-T right, and you’re likelier to command high search engine rankings anyway, for the simple reason that users will have a more positive experience with you than on sites that ignore E-A-T and simply try to ‘game’ Google’s algorithm.
Would you like to talk to informed, skilled and experienced digital marketing experts about the steps that could be taken to enhance your own online brand’s E-A-T? If so, don’t hesitate to contact the Webahead Internet team today via phone or email.