Google Ranking Sites by Expertise, Authoritativeness & Trustworthiness
The latest edition of Google's guidebook for their team of Search Quality Raters has been leaked, as frequently happens about once a year or so. Just in case you're new to this concept - search quality evaluators are third-party testers Google contracts with to get independent reviews of the quality of their search results. They provide an official Quality Guidelines document to give reviewers a baseline to work from. Here's a quick video of Matt Cutts explaining the reasoning behind this system.
In the past, the leaked document has simply contained minor revisions. However, this time the document has been completely rewritten and introduces a new set of guidelines describing what to look for in a quality Web site. Google has termed this set of guidelines EAT: Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. All of which are key factors in what Google considers to be a high quality site.
If you've been reading SEN then these are words we've been talking about since the beginning. In our opinion, here are some tips to grow in each of these categories:
Grow Your Author Rank - This is accomplished by adding authorship markup (rel="author" tag) to your content and linking it to your Google+ profile page. Doing this is easy and results in an increase in an author's overall authority. Even though Google has removed the author images from the general search results you can still trigger full snippets (including the picture) when logged-in to personalized search (which most are) and that is absolutely a benefit.
Google is smart and can recognize authorship in PDFs within the search results. The byline is VERY important to Google and seems to be THE deciding factor when it comes to applying authorship ...