Without Google’s trust, your best local SEO efforts are for naught.
A guy comes to your house, says he can add a room, fix your roof, and install new windows. He gives you an estimate that seems good, very good. Almost too good. In fact you start to wonder if you can trust him. Google wonders if it can trust you and your company. Gaining Google’s trust is the most important factor the best step for dominance local SEO.
On August 1 2018 Google released an update that created the anagram E.A.T. . E.A.T. stands for Expertise, Authority and Trust. Along with E.A.T. came YMYL, Your Money Your Life. The updates highlighted Google’s attempt to weed out weak, spammy and malicious sites when Googlers were looking for information concerning either the health or their finances. Clearly, people needing information on that kind of subject needed search choices that were knowledgeable and honest. Trustworthiness was always a high ranking factor in Google searches. The E.A.T. updated added expertise to the main list of criteria for search.
The Three Factors important for SEO:
But what about websites that don’t concern themselves with health or finance? It has been long recognized by the SEO industry that the three most important factors in local SEO are authority, relevance and trust.
Authority is the qualitative gauge which bolsters the prominence and ranking of a website, A main factor in local SEO is to increase authority. This is done through informative content and building valuable, high value links. Authority by itself won’t guarantee search visibility.
Relevance refers to how closely your website, or web page answers the query the user is asking. Along with relevance another local SEO factor is prominence. What business/website is the most highly considered and capable in this area for this query.
Getting Google to trust your business and website takes time and effort. Trust us when we say the effort will be worth it. Here’s what you need to do to gain Google’s trust.
- Linking to websites that have authority (trustworthiness) and offer relevance to the content on the page you’re trying to rank. Site authority is measured differently by various entities. Google has no published measurement. The most popular tool for measuring site authority is Domain Authority from Moz.
- Google likes Terms and Conditions pages and Privacy notices. Make sure you have both on your site. Along with this, make sure your website has an SSL certificate assigned to the site.
- You should try to reduce your bounce rate. Keeping visitors on your website is a clue to Google that the content on your website is useful and engaging. Make sure your website pages are well organized and delivers the content your title tags promise. Speaking of title tags, you should use them. If you do, don’t over-stuff them with your key phrases. The page should read naturally. You should be writing for the the visitor, not Google.
- Letting your visitors know who you are with an About page is another trust factor Google values. Although images help with SEO, visitors seeing pictures of people on an About page increases trust with them, a goal you should also be pursuing.
- Maintain a regular schedule for updating your website with fresh content. Blog articles are great at accomplishing this important task. Businesses in some niches, construction for example, use case studies to highlight their expertise and add content to their site. If they add a link to the client website that’s even more authority.
If Google trusts your business, you can be that your sure visitors will too. It’s a win win for everybody.