By Kaitie Frank
13 Dec 2023

Decoding the Who, How, and Why of Content, According to Google

Content Creation     Content Marketing

Creating engaging and valuable material is essential for capturing the attention of your target audience. Also, creating high-quality content that is deemed helpful can rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs), leading to more site traffic and visibility. Google’s advice is to make person-first content — but what does that really mean?

According to Google, person-first content is created primarily for people, not search engines. To achieve this, it's crucial to go beyond the basics and delve into the "who," "how," and "why" of your content, according to Google.

These fundamental questions form the backbone of effective communication, helping writers connect with their readers on a deeper level. Let's explore the significance of each question and how incorporating them can elevate your content.

Who - Establishing Credibility

“Who” also relates to the author of the article. Google urges content creators to use transparency so that searchers can understand the expertise and experience behind the content. This tactic is especially true for Your Money, Your Life (YMYL) content that must establish expertise to rank. 

The search engine’s advice is to:

  • Make it abundantly clear who authored it;
  • Establish a byline on content;
  • Add links to bylines so readers can learn more about the author.

Being transparent about authorship makes it easy for readers to do their due diligence, which can help improve user experience

How - Delivering Information

The term "How" refers to the process of creating content. Often, readers need to be made aware of the creation process of the articles they read. With the advent of AI-generated content, this can be a significant issue. If readers come to know that AI created an article, it may lose its credibility, leading to a negative impact on its ranking.

Additionally, other types of content can benefit from this type of transparency. Take product reviews, for example. Many buyers use product reviews to help inform buying decisions, and if the reviews aren’t credible, buyers won’t read them. 

So, how can we implement “how” in our content?

Google advises explicitly telling the reader what went into the making of content. Moving forward with the product reviews example, the author should include test results, how many products were used, and photographic evidence. This evidence lends to improving E-E-A-T, a driving metric for Google Search Quality Raters. 

When creating content using AI, it is important to disclose its use if it is evident. For example, if you used AI to generate a significant portion of the content but then edited it to ensure it was high quality, you should reveal this process to your audience.

Why - Establishing Purpose

Asking "Why" prompts you to articulate the purpose behind your content. Whether it's to inform, entertain, inspire, or persuade, understanding the "Why" gives your content a sense of direction and intent. Communicating the motivation behind your message helps create a more meaningful connection with your audience and aligns your content with your values and goals.

More importantly, asking “why” helps establish E-E-A-T in your content. For instance, say you’re a software company that sells HR software and want to create content that helps empower HR professionals then that is a great “why” to focus on. Google values content that is helpful to searchers, not just content that helps with ranking. 

More Tips to Enhance Your Content

While asking the “who,” “how,” and “why” is a good first step in aligning your content with Google’s standards, there are a few other ways to enhance your content so that it can provide value to your readers. 

Establish A Connection

Understanding your audience helps create content that resonates. This process involves identifying your target demographic, preferences, and pain points. 

By tailoring your content to address the specific needs of your audience, you can establish a connection beyond mere information delivery. Personalizing your content creates a sense of relatability, fostering trust and loyalty among your readers.

Example: If your target audience is young professionals struggling with work-life balance, addressing their challenges directly can make your content more compelling and relevant.

Provide Value

It’s essential to focus on the content's purpose and value to the reader. Defining what readers can gain from your content helps set expectations and encourages engagement. Whether offering solutions to a problem, sharing insights, or presenting valuable information, clearly understanding the value of your content ensures it serves a purpose. It is not just noise in the digital landscape.

Example: Instead of a generic article about time management, specify what readers will learn, such as "Proven Strategies for Efficient Time Management in a Busy Work Environment."

Craft a Narrative

Crafting a narrative involves guiding readers through the content logically and cohesively. 

Whether it's through storytelling, step-by-step guides, or visual aids, this tactic ensures that your content is not only informative but also easily digestible. A well-structured piece enhances the overall user experience, keeping your audience engaged from start to finish.

Example: Use bullet points, subheadings, and visuals to break down complex concepts and facilitate a smoother reading experience.

Incorporating the "Who," "How," and "Why" questions into your content creation process transforms your writing from mere information dissemination to a powerful tool for connection and engagement. 

By understanding your audience, providing value, delivering information effectively, and establishing a clear purpose, you can create content that captures attention and leaves a lasting impact on your readers.

Kaitie Frank

Kaitie is a copywriter and content writer for Page One Power who specializes in SEO-optimized content. She has written for various niches and prides herself in knowing random tidbits of information. In addition to putting words to paper, she indulges in physical fitness and telling her cat why he is, in fact, a good boy.