2020 has brought with itself a great many changes; from giving NASA a chance to launch another probe to Mars to the world being introduced to a novel virus and everything in between. And hidden amongst these celestial and microbial changes is a change in our favorite search engine’s algorithm, the 2020 core Google update.
The update focuses on quantity over quality with three main areas of focus; Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness, or in short; E.A.T. And what sort of content screams all three of these aspects louder than any other? eBooks, of course.
However, writing an eBook isn’t child’s playlet alone publishing and sharing it. That’s where your grit and resolve to grind in order to improve your domain authority comes into play. Either write your own or hire a professional eBook writing service to help you out.
Out of the three main areas of focus, it’s the first two that build domain expertise, while the third acts as a support capacity to reinforce your position in the search engine results page (SERP). Here, we’ll discuss how eBooks can help you improve your domain expertise in detail, helping you increase your overall rank and convert prospects in the process!
But before we take a deep-dive into the subject, it is important to understand that eBooks only contribute towards domain expertise if they do actually provide value. It’s one thing to just slap some content together, design a cover, and call it an eBook; it’s entirely another to make sure it provides value.
You might increase your domain authority and perhaps your SERP rankings for a while with such an eBook, but it won’t last long. It’s only a matter of time before catch up to what you’re doing. For that, it’s important to write an eBook that gives information and actually shows that you’re committed to helping, not just selling.
If you don’t have the skills to write such an eBook, don’t worry. There are eBook ghostwriters who can write it for you without you having to go through the grind.
So, with that out of the way, let’s dive in!
eBooks to Improve Your Domain Expertise
eBooks and domain expertise seem like an unlikely couple when you say it out loud. But if you think about it, really get into the depth of it, deep down every marketer knows that eBooks do actually contribute.
From providing that sweet golden mana for search engines called ‘content’ to providing a backlink and being an overall aesthetic improvement, eBooks are a must-have tool for every website. We all know it helps, but we don’t know at the same time.
How It Works
An eBook is the digital version of a printed book, meaning that two core requirements for any piece of content to qualify as an eBook are that
1. It should be displayable on a computer screen or your handheld device.
2. It shouldn’t be editable.
While the first requirement is pretty straightforward, i.e. the book needs to be an electronic book (eBook), the second one is slightly trickier.
There are eBooks that are just 5,000 words long, containing images, graphs and other similar things, while there are blog posts and articles that go well beyond the 20,000-word mark. The same article, once published on a website is sort of un-editable by the general public, right?
That’s the kicker. The website owner can edit the post at any time while the author of an eBook cannot make any changes. There is a sense of ‘finalization’ behind an eBook.
Writing an eBook
Writing an eBook can be fun, yes, but it can be a grind nonetheless – especially if it’s a long one. There are two core reasons why a marketer or business owner would want to write an eBook:
- As part of their marketing strategy
While the recreational sort doesn’t contribute towards improving your domain expertise, an educational book that shows the businessman’s expertise in the field is a ‘gold nugget’ for marketers.
The prospect of writing an eBook that presents a unique point of view to the world about your field might sound great, but actually sitting down and writing said eBook is harder than it sounds. Let’s consider two examples here.
Should you publish such a book on your website, you might be unable to reap all of the benefits an eBook offers in terms of improving your domain expertise.
Editing & Designing It
Once you’ve written your eBook, next up is editing and making it presentable. How you format your book depends on where you’re publishing it – something that we’ll discuss in the next section. Editing is crucial for any eBook since it helps maintain flow and gives your writers a good reading experience.
A compelling cover is what sells your book before the content within even gets a chance. However, this also depends on whether you’re publishing your book on Amazon or other similar platforms, or your own website.
Word of advice; break your text into smaller blocks of text if you’re posting it on your website. Use the ‘readability’ feature of online tools such as Yoast
If you’re going to publish it on another platform, you have some leeway here. The message is what you should focus on.
Now comes the fun yet tricky part; publishing. Like we mentioned, there are two ways you can take your eBook, both of which contribute towards improving your domain authority. But one method is better than the other.
No one way is easier or harder than the other.
Self-Publishing on an eBook Platform
Self-publishing your book on Amazon Kindle, iBooks, Google Books or other similar platforms is a good way to get a backlink from these websites to yours. These are reputable websites and therefore have a bearing when it comes to determining your domain authority.
However, going this route, the rewards are much less compared to the time, effort, or monetary investment you put in. You only get ONE backlink, which, although a big one, is nothing more than a drop in the ocean.
Instead, you get to build your image and increase your online presence by playing the reputation card. This builds authority but not one that really counts when it comes to search engines.
Publishing on Your Site
This is somewhat a more beneficial route but one that you can use many times before exhausting the avenue.
One eBook on a website looks great.
Two are even better.
Four? Hmm. More power to you, my friend.
Five; Okay, slow down there, cowboy.
Six – Overkill, much?
Seven. Okay, now this is getting ridiculous.
Eight or more; nobody’s really got time for that.
…Unless you send them through the mail to your subscribers, which again, does little to improve your domain authority. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s discuss how publishing on your site is beneficial for your marketing ventures first.
- You’re adding content to your website; educational content that shows that you know what you’re doing. You’re basically ‘flexing’ your knowledge – and search engines notice this.
- An eBook creates an unconscious connection between the reader and the author. If the information included within clicks, they won’t go anywhere else. Apart from building domain expertise, you also get to enjoy brand loyalty.
- You get to track the source of your customers and market accordingly. As you market more effectively, you get more audience which search engines see and consider you a better source of information than the competition.
And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Let’s say your eBook isn’t being downloaded. Does it mean it’s a complete failure? Not really. Whether customers read it or not, search engines read your eBook, sifting through for keywords and other relevant data. That’s why it is a good idea to use .EPUB, MOBI, or text-based PDF.
The only downside; no copy-protection. Whether you’re giving your eBook away for free or selling it, all it’ll take is for just one person to download it and should they turn out to have a parrot perched on their shoulder, one eye patch, and a hook for an arm (a pirate), consider your eBook stolen.
That’s what a lack of an ESBN number does.
If it’s a short eBook, that’s an investment I personally wouldn’t mind taking. A 10,000-word eBook stolen against a better rank on search engine? A small price to pay for better domain authority.
Adapting Your Website to Your eBook
Your website presents you with the perfect platform to market your eBook. Whether you’re publishing your eBook on a bookselling platform for revenue or on your website to improve domain authority, introduce CTAs everywhere so that people download it.
Include an author bio and make sure search engines read it. This way, not only are you increasing your website’s domain authority, you’re placing yourself as the subject-matter expert.
You can do this even if you’ve gotten your eBook ghostwritten from a professional eBook writing service.
Why It Works
Now that we’ve covered the how, let’s consider the why.
If you look at content consumption ratio, the more complex a content-form, the more linkable and shareable it is – not to mention easy to consume. We don’t mean writing a difficult article filled with jargon and things that laymen can’t understand, though.
By complex content-forms, we mean infographics, interactive videos, eBooks etc. They’re complex to create but easier to consume, right?
As more and more people share and read your eBook, your traffic increases. This forces search engines to reevaluate your current rank and either increase or decrease it, depending on the practices you’re using.
Google Wants You to E.A.T in 2020
In 2014, Google published its new Search Quality Guidelines that included that mnemonic “E.A.T.”Google suggested that websites should focus on Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. It wasn’t until 2020 that Google brought it back up, this time with a rather stern hand.
Although Google suggested at the time that these guidelines should be followed to perform better during Google’s search quality evaluations, it is only now that Google has given these evaluators more of a say in your rankings.
These evaluators number somewhere in the thousands and are responsible for manually reviewing websites based on Google’s guidelines. They don’t have the power to reduce your rankings, only to submit feedback to Google and make ‘recommendations’. Google has now started taking these recommendations rather seriously.
Google suggests that:
“For all other pages that have a beneficial purpose, the amount of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness (E-A-T) is very important.”
- Whether E-A-T guidelines are followed
- The website structure/design
- Information and value provided by the website
And that’s where your eBook comes into play.
E Isn’t Just for Expertise, It’s for eBook as Well
What’s the best way to tell the world that you know what you’re talking about? Writing an eBook on it. If you post a free eBook on your website, Google will read it. And we don’t mean just Google bots but the evaluators as well. If you’re offering the value you’ve provided, you automatically get good feedback in terms of your ‘expertise’.
The key here is to offer insights into your area of expertise in a manner so as to let the reader learn something new. If that happens, you’ll automatically be revered among readers and evaluators alike.
A Is for Authority
It’s one thing to write an eBook, it’s entirely another to have other authors link to you. Backlinks play an important role in determining your website’s authority which you can either do by publishing your eBook on a publishing platform or by simply allowing or encouraging people to use parts of your eBook, so long as they link it back to you.
T Is for Trustworthiness
Your bio is what plays an important role in determining your expertise and trustworthiness – whether it’s an eBook’s, or your website’s About Us page. The idea here is to let users know that the information they’re getting is from an expert who’s worked in the field. You can take the whole ‘About the Author’ section to explain your expertise.
Use your expertise to provide value to readers, and as you continue to do so, people come back again and again to read more and make decisions based on the information you’ve provided. This effectively increases your trustworthiness.
eBooks for All Three
The more trustworthy you are, the more traffic you generate. The more traffic you generate, the better you rank. The better you rank, more people will link towards your site, thus increasing authority. Authority is further reinforced as you incorporate a bio in your eBook or simply tell more about yourself in the about us page.
And thus, the trifecta of Google’s E.A.T requirement is completed – all thanks to a well-written and well-placed eBook. While all this might not have had much of an effect about a year ago, the 2020 update means that fulfilling these requirements is a surefire way to improve your domain expertise.
You might have noticed that we’ve mentioned that you’re going to have to provide value to your readers throughout the eBook, which might require experience as an eBook writer as well as in your own field. Mistakes within the eBook are like small rocks in your shoes.
Once can be ignored, twice can be lived with. Three or more times and you’re definitely going to take your shoe off and try to get the rocks out, right? eBook mistakes do the same to your eBook, so we recommend investing as much time as possible into creating the perfect eBook.
But that presents its own opportunity cost. For that, we suggest you try any of the number of professional eBook writing services available out there.
If you have anything you’d like to add or have any questions, let us know down in the comments and we’ll gladly address them!
eBook reading -DepositPhotos