Google just released new guidelines. Here’s what you need to know..

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Did you hear about Google’s new quality guidelines?

Here’s the whole story:

Google hires hundreds of “Quality Raters” to evaluate their search results.

If the Quality Raters say: “The results are great!”, then Google keeps things as-is.

But if they say: “These results are garbage!”, Google goes under the hood to tweak the algorithm.

The question is:

How do these raters know whether a page is “great” or “garbage”?

Well, Google hands every rater a thick “Quality Guidelines” document.

And this document outlines EXACTLY what Google considers a great result.

Here’s the interesting part:

That document was leaked last week (in response, Google publicly released the document a few days later).

It turns out this new guidelines document is a whopping 160 pages.

And to save you a few hours of time, I decided to sum up the 3 most important takeaways for you today.

Let’s jump right in:

1. “Front and Center”

Is your content front and center at the top of your page?

Or does someone have to scroll to read your first sentence?

According to the document, Google considers this is a BIG deal.

(In fact, it’s almost as important as your content’s overall quality)

In Google’s own words, they want your content to be “front and center” on the page.

Bottom Line: Don’t push your content “below the fold” of your page. A visitor should be able to read the first sentence without having to scroll.

2. E-A-T the results

This document really focused on E-A-T.

What’s E-A-T?

E-A-T stands for:

Expertise

Authoritativeness

Trustworthiness

And E-A-T boils down to: “Can you trust the source of this content?”.

Obviously, Google wants to show their users content with the highest level of E-A-T.

Bottom Line: If you’re an expert in your field, make sure to advertise that fact in your content. If not, “borrow” authority by citing lots of sources and experts.

3. “Highly Meets” vs. “Fails to Meet”

Google wants to rank pages that make searches say: “Great! I have my answer now”.

According to the document, an article that gives someone a comprehensive answer “Highly Meets” their needs.

And pages that don’t provide a full answer to their question “Fail to Meet” their needs.

Question is:

How do you create content that gets Google raters to check off the “highly meets” box?

Short answer: create long, in-depth content that covers every angle of your topic.

Longer answer: keep an eye out for next week’s new case study.

Cheers,

XS Marketing

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