Google announced a helpful content update on December 7th and a spam update on December 15th. As you can see, Google Search Central is announcing big changes in the last few months.
The Dec. 2022 helpful content update was released Dec. 5, starting to become more visible today & will take about two weeks to fully roll out. It improves our classifier & works across content globally in all languages. Our help page explains more: https://t.co/MS7hbcBTsp— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) December 6, 2022
Today, with our December 2022 link spam update, we’re leveraging the power of SpamBrain to neutralize the impact of unnatural links on search results. The update launches today & will take about two weeks to rollout. Learn more: https://t.co/ACO2Ut8wmi— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) December 14, 2022
Following this trend, Google mentioned E-E-A-T in its Tweet. If you are already working for SEO, you may have heard of E-A-T somewhere. They updated its search rater guideline and added a new E to the existing concept of E-A-T. The last update of the search rater guideline occurred in December 2022, so it’s been a year since the last update. Catching up with the search rater guideline is crucial for SEO analysts so let’s explore how Google changed its rating system.
To better assess our results, E-A-T is gaining an E: experience. In addition to expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness, does content demonstrate some degree of experience? Learn more about how E-E-A-T is now part of our search rater guidelines https://t.co/8hCj1Gk49S— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) December 15, 2022
E-E-A-T(Double-E-A-T) is a new concept to assess Google Search results. A new “E” was added to the concept of E-A-T. According to the quality rater guidelines, this new E stands for Experience. Therefore, E-E-A-T now means Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness.
E-E-A-T is used to evaluate the performance of Google’s search ranking systems. Their search raters use the concept of E-E-A-T when they assess the quality of pages and the reasonableness of SERP ranking.
We can use this concept when we make content for Google. By creating content that follows this E-E-A-T guideline, it will more likely be ranked high on SERP. The reason is that the ranking algorithm learns to rank pages that are more in line with this concept higher. (*Google’s search raters don’t directly influence ranking.)
Among E-E-A-T, the most important character is “T(Trustworthiness)”. The first aspect Google checks is how trustworthy the page is. Without trust, even if the page has the experience, expertise, or authoritativeness, Google won’t judge that the page is worth ranking high. Therefore, who wrote the page is crucial to rank high on SERP.
Google search raters see the following information to check if the page is trustworthy:
・About Us page: What company or who is the writer of the page? What do they do?
・Review: What do others say about the writer or owner of the page? How do people see the writer?
・Main content: What is the main content of the writer?
・Conflict of interest: Does the writer promote his/her own product?
Okay, we understood trustworthiness is the most important in E-E-A-T. So what’s next? When you write a blog, you will wonder which is more important, experience or expertise. Google’s guideline shows us the answer to this question.
In the guideline, Google shows how they prioritize experience and expertise with specific examples. As you can see in this table, the order of importance depends on the topic. In case of the topic is about medical, political rules, or administrative procedures, expertise is prioritized. On the other hand, when it’s about a practical topic, experience is prioritized. Therefore, writers should be aware of which kind of content they are going to make. For example, it will be very difficult to rank high anymore for non-medical experts when they write about medical information.
Indeed, sharing individual experiences about YMYL(Your Money, Your Life) seems dangerous at some points. However, Google says “Pages that share first-hand life experience on clear YMYL topics may be considered to have high E-E-A-T as long as the content is trustworthy, safe, and consistent with well-established expert consensus.“
They think it’s not always true that experts’ opinion is superior to individual experiences. It’s possible to get a high evaluation even if it’s a personal blog about YMYL.
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Reference: Search quality evaluator guidelines & Our latest update to the quality rater guidelines: E-A-T gets an extra E for Experience