Google recently released huge chunks of information that was previously only guessed about by SEO and Inbound Marketing experts. We’ve discussed a few of the juiciest pieces on takeaways already. While the guidelines don’t give specific instructions on how to rank #1, they instead provide crucial information on what exactly Google evaluators are looking for, what they consider a high-quality page, and how your content should be written. It’s the last part that content marketers should be especially interested in. An interesting piece of advice Google gave to us in the content standards release was the need for expert writers. What does this mean for you? A few things actually:
It’s Not a Big Change…
It’s no secret that Google has always loved original, informative, and in-depth content. Many of Google’s recent algorithm updates, including the recent update to Penguin, have been designed to reward web pages that feature clear, concise, professional writing and the links they deserve.
... But it is More Important Than Ever
Google’s new guidelines, however, place a huge emphasis on not just quality information but the need for expert writers, especially on pages that Google views as being very important. While we know that Google has always valued quality content, it seems as if they’re now placing an increased focus on things like authority, as well. This author authority helps with whether a page is considered high-quality, which then affects its ranking. According to Section 4.3 of Part 1 of the guidelines, the guidelines state that, in order for a page to possess the qualities of a high-quality page, it needs to feature “expert” content written by “expert” writers:
- Complex medical advice should only be given by people or organizations that possess appropriate accreditation. It should also be written in a professional style and will need to be reviewed, updated, and edited regularly in order to ensure that it remains current and authoritative.
- Similarly, complex financial advice, tax advice, or legal advice should be written by expert writers in that field. This includes any industry or field that a person’s wealth or well-being could be effected by reading it, like a home remodeling page. These subjects, which are subject to change, will need to be updated regularly.
- Hobby pages on topics like hockey, horseback riding, or photography, require expert writers.
User Experience is Still Top Priority
Google’s goal is to provide users with the best experience of their search engine and show them websites that are exactly what they are looking to find. That’s the whole purpose of the algorithm updates in the first place. If you’re creating high-quality content that your Buyer Personas are looking for, chances are pretty good that you will stay in Google’s good graces. After all, you shouldn’t be using expert writers because that’s what Google tells you to do; you should be using them because that what delivers the best experience for your users.
Google’s focus is on the user experience, and if yours is too, then you are automatically following what they want you to do. The release of the content standard guidelines is definitely good news for those who follow the Google-recommended, White Hat SEO practices. We will keep you updated on any more algorithm updates or Google releases in 2016, but in the meantime, download our free eBook Modern SEO to stay current.