How is blog or website content graded?

qualityYou may think your content is high quality but knowing how it’s rated can be an eye-opening experience. The quality of the main content can be determined by how well that content meets the purpose of the page and how well you promote it.

We all want to improve our blogging skills and our blogs. For most that’s a a steady progression for others it may not be, but I don’t know any bloggers who are not making any future plans. Have you begun to formulate a plan, no matter how sketchy for taking your blog to the next level? Blogging Improvement: Leveling Up

This summer I became aware of Google’s brand new emphasis in the new Quality Rater’s Handbook. The idea of E-A-T, which is a website’s “expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness” is the baseline.

One day after Google was granted the content quality patent, version 5.0 of Google’s Quality Rating Guidelines were leaked; as first documented on by Jennifer Slegg. The guidelines detail the process that a quality rater should go through in order to score the quality of a page. Read the full article Content Quality Score: Google’s Best Kept Secret For Rankings Read the full new 160 page guidelines on scribd.com.

How does your website rank? Note these 7 website graders.

Previously Google’s search algorithm considered your content and backlinks to it as votes, and the more you received, the better ranking your site would have. Now social shares seem to be surpassing backlinks when it comes to influence. That’s regrettable because it doesn’t take much IQ or effort to attract or purchase a pack of followers, who become button clicking auto-sharing monkeys promoting links to the same content all over the internet.

47 thoughts on “How is blog or website content graded?

  1. I’ve heard that expression, you are what you E.A.T., but I never realized it had to do with how content is rated… : )

    Your response to that one comment, how you sometimes click over to a blog and “wonder where the high quality original content is hiding” made me roar with laughter. Your pithy quips have been missed, and so have you.

    Good to see you up and at ’em, cough or no cough. A belated Happy New Year to you, TT! : )

    1. It’s always good to hear from you Mark. I hope you have a wonderful 2015. Today I will attempt to sing a little as my laryngitis and bronchitis seem to be clearing up.

  2. Gosh, some of those article links get into deeper mathematical analyses. I’m just happy to interact with my regular readers and commenters. A person could go slightly bonkers by overfocusing on a tiny statistic instead of spending more time generating understanding with commenters.

    My best wishes for a healthy, good 2015 timethief.

    1. I agree with your going bonkers observation. It never ceases to amaze me how many bloggers obsess over things like stats. I experience some in the support forums and in many cases I click into their sites and wonder where the high quality original content is hiding.

      Best wishes to you and your partner for an outstanding 2015, Jean.

      1. Haha I’m with Jean there. Just going to focus on generating good content and making it look presentable. Hopefully that will attract some eyeballs and get some brains going.

  3. The visual appeal on this blog is grand! If I were a grader I would say it rated top position.

    My own blog evaluation was a surprise. Not only was I impressed WP found value in it, but I was also happy they sent me the results. Yeah for WordPress! What a super encouragement.

    1. Thank you Beth. I think it’s important to keep these reports in perspective. Most blog to create connections and friends. It’s why we blog and how well we do at achieving our purpose for blogging that really counts, regardless of ranking.

  4. Hope you and hubby are feeling better, timethief. Glad to see you’re back. I’ve bookmarked the 7 free grading sites. Thanks, again, for a very informative article. Wishing you all the best for the new year. ;-)

  5. Thanks for alerting us to this “grading” monster. I wonder if grading is the reason I hated elementary school and high school.

    I’m a relic of the old days, when a reporter’s copy needed to survive the evil eyes of the copy desk, and a writer’s book needed to pass muster with the publisher’s editors in New York. Readers and editors I can deal with, but I resent automated content-rating machinery. I’ll solve that problem by simply not thinking about content rating.

    I keep reading that WordPress.com provides built-in SEO optimization for my blogs. That will have to be good enough. As a former abstractor and indexer, as well as an editor, I’ve been on board with the concept of key words for a long time. I pay attention to the titles of my posts and I use tags. I reserve most of my time and attention for crafting sentences and finding the right words. I revise to delete the unnecessary and the repetitive.

    I’m a writer and an editor, not a mechanic or an engineer. I could worry about Google’s algorithms. But that would only create stress and take the fun out of blogging.

    I’m glad to see you posting. I love your Christmas decorating. I wish you a New Year free of bronchitis, and filled carefree blogging.

    1. Hi there,
      It’s good to hear from you and to have a chance to wish you all the best in the new year. I’m aware of Google’s guidelines and of Bing’s too but I don’t get worked up over these evaluations. I’m just the curious type.

    2. OMG, a real live editor, albeit a retired one! Its great to hear your comments on the profession. Are there any real human editors out there anymore? When I read the headlines and sub-headlines from various newspaper articles online, I am appalled by the horrible command of the English language. Don’t those writers have editors?

      I am writing my first fiction work, and appreciate your comment about crafting sentences and finding the right words. Besides the plot line and the characters, that’s what good writing is all about. I am even experimenting with publishing a chapter or two on my blog, just to see what reaction I get (blog-a-book).

      Speaking of publishing and editing, it also appears that the phenomenon of e-books has made this business crazy too. If you can buy anyone’s work from Amazon for 4 bucks to download, has anyone, editor or otherwise, ever even looked at it? Is there any quality control for these works?

      Sorry to get off on a rant, but your occupation should not be relegated to the days of horses and buggywhips. Nor should it be replaced by computerized algorithms (sorry to you too, Google).

      Keep editing. By the way, I did proofread this reply!

      1. Thank you Paul. Good luck with the book. As their legacy business collapsed and they transitioned to Web products, newspapers made a conscious decision to reduce editing staff to a minimum. It was an economic necessity. Newspapers, even the great ones, went through two decades of staff reductions. Reporters, who find the news, are essential to the journalistic function. But editors, not so much. You have to have content, and reporters provide whatever original content the newspaper offers. Everything except original reporting and opinion writing is reprocessing and reprinting copy from other sources.

        The Baltimore Sun actually experimented with eliminating the hated word, “editor,” and started calling the surviving editors “content managers.” I think they’ve found that experiment to be silly and now allow the word “editor” for the people who manage the content. The ranks of actual copy editors have been thinned almost to extinction.

  6. Hi Timethief and wishing you a happy new year. My blog according to the checks doesnt look as good as it could with mobile or tablet. I am off to address that. Thank you!! Sorry about the bronchitis and I hope your chest clears up quickly.
    Sharon. XX

    1. Hi Sharon,
      Here’s a big {HUG}. May 2015 be an outstanding year for you.

      P.S. If you switch to using a responsive theme be sure to disable the Mobile theme which is a completely different theme here > Appearance > Mobile. Only these themes are responsive layout themes http://theme.wordpress.com/themes/features/responsive-layout/

      A responsive layout theme adapts to different screen sizes so that your website will work (and be optimized for) iPhones, iPads, Android and other mobile devices. When responsive width themes are viewed on mobiles sidebars appear below the posts in order to provide as much space as possible for reading.

      1. Thank you. I think my theme (20 10) has a box to check that makes the blog look better on mobile. I am a bit confused at the moment and have started a thread with the wordpress forum asking about the other boxes one would check yes or no under that one. I checked my blog on my phone and it seemed fine but it got a poor report from the graders. I would like to move with the times and be as mobile friendly as possible.
        Lovely to hear from you. your help has been invaluable to many and especially me. XX

  7. I got marked down for not being more linked to social media, which is a deliberate choice on my part. Also for not doing anything about marketing/monetizing, also a deliberate choice. And for coding and stuff I don’t have a lot of control over. Er, over which I have no control. :)

    1. I get the same yammer because I don’t choose to register a Facebook account or a Google + account.

      I hope you have a healthy, happy and productive 2015.

      1. Thanks for making my day! Happy New Year to you.
        I’m laid up in bed and am getting clearer headed, so I’m working on my page load speed. Some of my images are massive. I’ve got it down to 2.2 seconds. That seems pretty dang fast!

          1. These are the ways to reduce page loading time:

            1. Edit posts and insert “the more tag” so only excerpts appear on the front page. http://en.support.wordpress.com/splitting-content/more-tag/ Alternatively, you can switch to using a theme that automatically displays front page excerpts. This is a list of active themes on WordPress.com that use the excerpt instead of full post content. Here are the themes that do provide that feature > http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/theme-with-automatic-excerpts?replies=13#post-1396410

            2. Reduce the number of posts appearing on the front page here > Settings > Reading
            Blog pages show at most _ posts

            3. Reduce the number of images and or media embeds displayed and/or make them smaller.

            4. Reduce the number of widgets in the sidebar and footer areas.

            You may also consider using a responsive width theme like I do. https://theme.wordpress.com/themes/features/responsive-layout/?sort=free Responsive width means the layout adapts depending on the size of the device being used to view your site. When responsive width themes are viewed on mobiles sidebars appear below the posts in order to provide as much space as possible for reading.
            If you do switch to using one then disable the mobile theme here > Appearance > Mobile

          2. Great advice! I’ve been using the “read more” insert. My photos need to be shrunk. I’ll look into that theme. I’m pretty bored with mine.
            Thanks so much! Hope the sun is shining and you’re feeling better!

          3. I agree about the image shrinking.
            I agree that you need a theme change.
            There are reasons why I use this one. Aside from being responsive and automatically displaying excerpts it has a featured posts feature I like, and it also has built in related post links to 3 posts below every one I publish. Just saying …

            It’s overcast but not raining and that means my body isn’t aching. One choir I belong to started up again last week and I was okay as the bronchitis and laryngitis has gone. The big choir begins at the beginning of next month and I should be in fine tune by then.

  8. Hooray, you’re back. I have visiting granddaughters to care for so won’t have much chance or energy to read. But I already know that regarding improving on it is concerned, I am a disgrace. :)

    1. Hi Mary. Hubby came down with the flu on the 10th and I got it 3 days later. We both have bronchitis but we are trucking on. You are an inspiring writer with a keen mind and interesting take on many topics. Happy New Year!

      1. Dear TT, I’m better at appreciating than being appreciated, still, it’s so nice what you’ve said. I do hope you’ve not brought your bronchitis into the new year, but if so, I hope it goes away soon. Happy New Year to you too, dear TT. (Although I think I can guess why you call yourself Time Thief, I’d dearly love to know your name one day.)

  9. [ Smiles ] I have always told my friends, “Google is not the only search engine out there on the world wide web; there is also Bing and Yahoo.”

    I know that Google is the number one search engine on the planet; however, if we are unable to meet their standards, we could at least try to meet the standards of Bing and Yahoo.

    1. Thanks for commenting Sarah. I’m coping with a lot of coughing due to bronchitis but happy to say I don’t have pneumonia. All states are relative and subject to change. :)

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