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The Three Most Important Tips for Using EAT

In 2019, with Google’s dominance of the search engine landscape, SEO really refers to Google optimization. With Google’s latest algorithm update, BERT, it begged the question “can search engine marketers optimize for BERT?” The truth is – no, there’s no way to optimize for BERT. However, search engine marketers can use the EAT formula to create high quality content.

What is EAT?

Unlike BERT, EAT is not an algorithm. Instead, EAT stands for expertise, authority and trustworthiness. This sets the groundwork for Google’s quality ratings. Quality Raters, real people that assign quality scores to results for specific queries, use EAT to identify high quality content. In September 2019, the term “high quality” was updated to “high EAT” in Google’s content guidelines.

Websites that use unoriginal or copied content, have no main content and have inaccessible main content are considered, by Google’s content guidelines, low quality. Here are the three major tips marketers can apply to avoid these SEO pitfalls:

Tip #1 – Prioritize Authorship for Editorial Content

Does your website include original content? Crediting work helps develop authority, especially when your authors have been published elsewhere. By creating in-depth bios and user profiles for contributors, readers can see what qualifies these writers. LinkedIn profiles, active twitter accounts and other work helps boost credibility.

Furthermore, readers should also understand who is responsible for what. A clear understanding of who works for the company is crucial for developing trustworthiness. Think about it – you wouldn’t trust a business that doesn’t list contact information, would you?

Authorship and ownership cover all three elements of EAT. By looking at contributors’ bios, one can see credentials that make them experts. Having access to social profiles and other associated work shows authority. Finally, viewing contact information shows trustworthiness.

Tip #2 – Personal Branding

Developing a brand does not have to be complicated. It can be as simple as identifying a brand voice and understanding an existing reputation. This not only applies to a company brand, but the personal brands of content creators. This goes along with tip #1. According to the LSC Webinar “BERT: Google’s Latest Search Algorithm to Better Understand Natural Language” David Clemen talked about three key ways to develop a personal brand.

  • Build up your social media profiles and engage with influencers in your industry.
  • Position yourself as a thought leader on trusted platforms. This goes along with authorship and making sure your company’s creators have well-developed social profiles.
  • Get personal with your audience.

Creators who contribute main content to websites should have an identifiable brand online so readers and search engines can identify their work across platforms and rank their content higher.

Tip #3 – Don’t Forget the Technical

Technical accuracy online leads to trustworthiness. Search engines can identify fraudulent badges, so it pays to tell the truth. Additionally, earning certificates and getting verified is worth the time and money in the long run. For example, Google Chrome is marking all HTTP pages as “Not Secure” for a lack of a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate. This small, easy to obtain certificate can change your website’s relationship with search engines.

Other red flags to search engines like Google include:

  • Misusing logos.
  • Not linking verifiable badges.
  • Wrongly displaying verifiable badges.
  • User-generated content like forums and sharing websites.

While the technical work is not the most fun part of the process, the payoff is huge.

So sorry, these tips won’t help you crack the BERT code, but they will keep your website in tip top shape no matter what Google adds to the algorithm. For more SEO tips, check out the LSC Digital webinar about SEO. For more online marketing tips, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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