If you’re a small business owner, you need to know that Google has to trust your site before they position it on a results page. Without that trust, you may fall behind in organic search results.

For Google, the basics of organic search begin with E-A-T (Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness). Each of these can be understood in relatively easy terms, but the complexity of implementation is often difficult and convoluted. And small businesses are often at a disadvantage when it comes to proving their expertise and authority. So, one thing they can focus on is being a trustworthy source.

Can Your Website Be Trusted?

Google has many ways to determine what constitutes a trustworthy website. Staying on top of these is as important as posting frequent updates to your website. Here are 7 ways you can show that your website is trustworthy enough to be ranked higher on the search results page.

  1. Physical Presence. Google will direct users toward local businesses. This actually builds trust in users, while Google finds trustworthy websites to direct them toward.
  2. Testimonials. Customers and clients that rave about your business are some of the most trustworthy advertisers for your business. If you have testimonials on your site, you can link them to their social media profile. It works acts like evidence of your connection.
  3. Active Support. If you take online orders, Google believes that your website is more trustworthy when you offer pre- and post-sales support.
  4. Big Media. Having media coverage is very important for Google’s rankings. This also displays the legitimacy of your business as an expert and authority in your chosen niche.
  5. Physical Presence. Google gives preference to local businesses, but they can’t trust your website when your physical address is not on your website or incorrectly displayed.
  6. Privacy Policy. This page informs visitors to your website about how their personal information will be tracked and used by your company. Google considers this an important part of whether or not a website is trustworthy.
  7. Terms and Conditions. This is another important page on your website because it is a set of rules and regulations surrounding the use of your website. It acts as a contract between you and visitors to your site. With this page you can prevent abuses, protect your content, and limit your liability.

Be a Trustworthy Source

In order for small businesses to be recognized in organic Google’s search engine results page (SERP) can leapfrog their competition through paid advertising. This strategy is a short-term win and an expensive one, too. Without a long-term plan, the gains from paid advertising can be quickly lost, because Google does not favor their advertisers with higher SERP placement. Only organic search strategies will elevate your business to the top.