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Let’s talk about trust

It’s widely known that when rating websites manually, to teach its automated algorithms, Google asks its assessors to look for “experience, expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness”. Of these, the one that SEO professionals seem to agree is the most important is trustworthiness. But what is meant by this?

If trustworthiness equates to website importance, that’s a reason why Google’s simple original ranking factor – external links – worked so well. You don’t get a lot of external links from the best websites unless you’re trustworthy. However, trustworthiness can also mean that the content can be trusted to still be correct, which is why many SEO experts actively promote adding and amending content constantly. Again, look at things from Google’s point of view. If an article is updated frequently, it probably means that it’s a good one.

Another recognised way of demonstrating that an article can be trusted is to provide a byline with a link to more information about the author – e.g. a LinkedIn profile. If appropriate, testimonials and customer comments also add to the mix. It’s worth having a think about the differences between experience, expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness, and working particularly hard on demonstrating the latter.