What does EAT mean for SEO?

Let’s not bury the lead.

E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness. Why E-A-T is important takes a little longer to explain.

Let’s break down each component and explain how you can use them to make your content more Google-friendly.

There are many factors the algorithms use to help drive a page with relevant information to the top of a SERP (search engine result page). Some black hat SEO techniques may try to fake expertise to help drive a spammy page to the top position while circumventing the Google AI. But did you know that Google also uses real people to review sites and to score pages based on a multitude of factors? It’s true!

Pro Tip – you can download the document Google Search Quality Raters use to score your site right here →→ Search Quality Ratings Guidelines.

Real people will score pages and sites to help the Google AI understand the difference between spam, bad content, and expert content. This leads us to E.


E is for Expertise

Here’s the base line set of questions Google uses to determine if your site and its pages share a specific and substantial expertise. Use these questions to help guide you to a content mix that share’s your sites full breadth and depth of knowledge across your industry, vertical, or niche.

    • Does the content present information in a way that makes you want to trust it, like clear sourcing, evidence of the expertise involved, background about the author or the site that publishes it, such as through links to an author page or a site’s About page?
    • If you researched the site producing the content, would you come away with an impression that it is well-trusted or widely-recognized as an authority on its topic?
    • Is this content written by an expert or enthusiast who demonstrably knows the topic well?
    • Is the content free from easily-verified factual errors?

Following these baseline questions give your content the foundation it will need to pass the authoritative test. It’s important to know that depending on your vertical, you may have to answer an additional question specific to ymyl (your money or your life) sites. These are sites discussing anything related to financial advice or content along with healthcare advice or content.

    • Would you feel comfortable trusting this content for issues relating to your money or your life?


A is for Authoritative

Is your website authoritative? Do you know how to check if your site is authoritative? Web citations and backlinks will be vital for this part of the EAT SEO checklist.

Here’s a list of things that will help Google see your site is an authority on your content.

    • Backlinks from reputable sources – including follow and nofollow links (learn about a few changes to nofollow links)
    • Web citations on other websites for the content author
    • Web mentions for the site or the author
    • Social shares for the site or a webpage

Gaining these links, shares, citations, and mentions may take time, but as you build your expertise and ramp up your content output, quality content will begin to build authority across the web. Domain Authority is a measurable metric you can use to track how authoritative your site is becoming. At the end of this blog, we’ll provide a form where you can reach out to Infinity to have us create an SEO web health evaluation so you view your site’s current domain authority score.

A strong content strategy will aid in your site meeting the requirements for authority. Learn more about creating a content strategy to get more links, shares, and leads. 


T is for Trustworthiness

Your reviews matter. Make sure that you have visibility across all of the major review sites in your industry. Glassdoor is for your recruitment, and of course, how you’re rated on Google My Business and Facebook. On the technical side, make sure your website is server secure and your domain is https and not just http. You need https because it’s a standard for modern web browsers to trust your site is secure to protect customer data and more. Here’s more info on why https matters.

Here’s your trustworthiness checklist.

    • Monitor and respond to your online reviews
    • Ensure your site domain is upgraded to https
    • Review your site’s privacy policy and make sure it’s in your sitemap
    • Connect your site to a physical address if you have one through Google My Business and other map services

These tips will set you on the right path to a complete content strategy to show your content and your site follow the EAT principles for SEO.

If you have any questions about how to apply this to your site and content, let us know! If you’d like to get a free web health assessment for your site and want to see what your current authority score is, use the form below and we’ll send you a high level look at how Google ranks your site.



Request a Web Health Assessment

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