What Google’s Updated Quality Guidelines Mean For You

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Decent content means writing quality information that’s beneficial to the user. There’s a responsibility companies and writers have to produce material that adds value, while keeping tabs on Google and their updated quality guidelines. If your content does not meet Google’s requirements, then your content could be penalised. Here’s what the new guidelines mean.

What it Means

Publishers have a responsibility to put out content that’s truthful and doesn’t lie to the reader. Google takes these ratings seriously, and for a good reason. Your goal is to distribute and read content that’s helpful and brings value. Low-quality content or pages won’t be tolerated. Don’t mislead or be deceptive in your content.

In the latest update, Google talked the fake news phenomenon. Most recently, there were more additions related to the Upsetting-Offensive flag (which came out last time), regarding further clarification around when a site should be marked as offensive. There’s greater clarification around the fact that a page shouldn’t be marked offensive just because the topic is sensitive. The purpose and presentation of the content presented should be evaluated and flagged if it falls in this realm.

What to Look for

Inaccurate content that promotes hate or violence is now considered lowest quality. Clickbait isn’t acceptable either and won’t get the readership it once saw. Understand that mobile is still huge and your content must be ready for viewing on a mobile phone to be ranked higher.

Google goes on to clarify that not all news articles are considered Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) pages. Google states, “To clarify, news sites that would somehow potentially impact the future happiness, health, or financial stability of users ARE still being held to YMYL.  If your news site does not fall under that, it would not.” Overall, page quality is key. Quality is significant to getting your content seen by users. The most important factors for page quality rating is expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness, main content quality and amount, website information/information about who is responsible for the website, and website reputation. Distracting and misleading titles are downgraded and won’t perform well.

What You Can Do

Make sure your team is equipped to handle the quality guidelines from Google. Have a process in place that allows you to have the time, knowledge and resources to produce worthy content. You want to avoid having your content flagged or marked as inappropriate. Design a content plan and work ahead to make sure you’re covering your bases before deadlines, so you’re not scrambling to get something out the door. Have a proofreader who approves each piece of content before it’s posted, so you know it follows the quality guidelines.

The guidelines exist so the internet can continue to be a place to exchange relevant and valuable knowledge and ideas. It’s important to stick to the guidelines, so your work gets shown and is visible to the users you’re trying to reach. Use Google’s updated quality guidelines to help keep you and your team on track for delivering outstanding content.

Image courtesy of: www.unks.de

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