E-A-T stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
E-A-T- is an acronym created by Google in its Search Quality Guidelines and is used throughout that document as the criteria evaluators use to assess the quality and credibility of content.
Frequently Asked Questions about E-A-T:
In Google’s Search Quality Guidelines, Google defines E-A-T as the level of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness of the creator of the main content; the main content itself, and the website. E-A-T is more important for websites that are classified as YMYL (your money, your life).
YMYL is another acronym from Google’s Search Quality Guidelines, which stands for Your Money, Your Life. Examples of YMYL topics or pages are ones that can impact a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety.
E-A-T is the criteria Google’s search quality evaluators use when they evaluate search results during the 380,000+ quality evaluations Google conducts every year with over 10,000 human quality raters. Google trains these raters on the specific criteria they are looking for with good or bad content quality and E-A-T.
The raters’ feedback is then incorporated into Google’s future algorithms, although it’s important to understand that the raters’ scoring does not directly influence Google’s results; but rather, in aggregate, Google uses their feedback as data points that helps ensure that the content surfaced by their algorithms is in line with what humans would expect from high-quality search results.
The volatility in Google’s organic search results starting with the Medic Update of August 1, 2018, appears to be tied closely to Google’s emphasis on E-A-T. Google’s core updates of the past 2 years have disproportionately impacted YMYL (your money, your life) websites and content, especially in cases where that content was lacking sufficient E-A-T.
Many sites whose content contains medical, financial, or legal advice saw big traffic declines between 2018 and 2020 as Google’s search results adjusted to surface only the highest-quality, most authoritative and trustworthy content. As a result of these changes to Google’s algorithms, many brands have made the focus on E-A-T a primary part of their SEO strategies to be able to stay competitive in SEO.
No, Google has confirmed there is no specific score for E-A-T or YMYL. My article about common E-A-T myths and misconceptions elaborates further on this topic.
The main goal of optimizing for E-A-T is to make the good qualities about your brand, your leadership, your experts, and the people who write for you as prominent as possible on the website. This helps to instill a sense of trust in your users (as well as search engines) that the content you provide is safe, credible, and accurate. There is no explicit or confirmed ranking factor that plays into good E-A-T except for PageRank and links, but that doesn’t mean that on-page signals or sentiment around the brand don’t matter. Consider making it as transparent as possible who your experts are, who your company is, how you make money, and why your content can be trusted. The materials provided throughout this page present a variety of actionable tips that website owners can use to improve E-A-T.
Yes, Bing’s version of E-A-T is referred to as QC: quality and credibility.
To determine QC, Bing looks at the author or site’s reputation, the level of discourse, transparency of authorship, and conversely, the use of name-calling or offensive statements, which can demote a sites’ rankings.
Here is a portfolio of my work on the topic of E-A-T (the last video is in Spanish):
Videos About E-A-TJump to 5 hours and 48 minutes for my presentation.
Articles on E-A-T
For the 2019 Pubcon conference in Las Vegas, I conducted original research among 60+ sites that benefitted from recent Google core algorithm updates in order to demonstrate what it means to have good E-A-T.