The Real Meaning Of 'Quality Content', According To Google

When developing a website and maintaining one, creating a "quality content" should always be the focus.

In order to gain an advantage in SEO, quality content can help websites rank higher on search engines. But the thing is, what is the definition of quality content? Does visitors consider "quality content" the same way as search engines do?

When defining "quality content," the answer to this million-dollar question is not only because quality content brings more visitors, lower bounce rate and create higher conversions.

Quality content is what people seek, and having quality content will make a website thrive, and compete better with others on the same niche/industry.

Quality content is regarded as the thing that makes a website an expert in its field, authoritative in its industry, and trustworthy.

But who determines the quality of a site's content?

Publishers? Search engines? Or visitors?


Short answer: visitors.

In general, to create quality content include:

  • Write for readers, not search engines.
  • Create unique content that has not been published elsewhere on the web.
  • Make content that is engaging.
  • Follow 'E-A-T', which stands for "Expertise," "Authoritativeness," and "Trustworthiness."
  • And more.

However, every visitor's intention can be different. Every visitor of a site arrives there using different keywords, and landed on a page using a various search intent.

It's difficult to really describe what quality content actually is, because every visitor knows what they want but unfortunately, marketers may not.

So instead of focusing what visitors think about quality content, it's easier to just ask Google for its own opinion.

In a Google SEO office-hours hangout, Google’s John Mueller offered a definition of what content quality really means. And his answer expanded on what "quality content" has always been in the eyes of publishers.

Most of the time, publishers and marketers in the SEO industry try to consider quality content in the narrowest mean possible.

But according to Mueller, the complete definition of content quality is massive.

Mueller said that:

“When it comes to the quality of the content, we don’t mean like just the text of your articles.

It’s really the quality of your overall website.

And that includes everything from the layout to the design.

Like, how you have things presented on your pages, how you integrate images, how you work with speed, all of those factors they kind of come into play there.”

So apart from E-A-T and other criteria, Google determines a website to have "quality content" when it encompasses everything a website needs to have, including the technical stuff.

Most importantly, Mueller pointed how everything that is presented on a web page also has an impact on how Google views content quality.

"So it’s not the case that we would look at just purely the text of the article and ignore everything else around it and say, oh this is high quality text," he said. "We really want to look at the website overall."

Another way of saying this, Google's definition of "quality content" goes far beyond what most people in the SEO industry understand.

Further reading: The Reasons Why Websites May Lose Rankings, According To Google