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Google Search Quality Rating Guidelines

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2019-12-06 | Time to read: 350 minutes
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Author: Google
General Guidelines
General Guidelines Overview
5
0.0 Introduction to Search Quality Rating
6
0.1 The Purpose of Search Quality Rating
6
0.2 Raters Must Represent the User
6
0.3 Browser Requirements
6
0.4 Ad Blocking Extensions
6
0.5 Internet Safety Information
6
Part 1: Page Quality Rating Guideline
7
1.0 Introduction to Page Quality Rating
7
2.0 Understanding Webpages and Websites
7
2.1 Important Definitions
7
2.2 What is the Purpose of a Webpage?
8
2.3 Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) Pages
9
2.4 Understanding Webpage Content
9
2.4.1 Identifying the Main Content (MC)
9
2.4.2 Identifying the Supplementary Content (SC)
10
2.4.3 Identifying Advertisements/Monetization (Ads)
10
2.4.4 Summary of the Parts of the Page
11
2.5 Understanding the Website
11
2.5.1 Finding the Homepage
11
2.5.2 Finding Who is Responsible for the Website and Who Created the Content on the Page
13
2.5.3 Finding About Us, Contact Information, and Customer Service Information
13
2.6 Reputation of the Website or Creator of the Main Content
14
2.6.1 Research on the Reputation of the Website or Creator of the Main Content
15
2.6.2 Sources of Reputation Information
15
2.6.3 Customer Reviews of Stores/Businesses
15
2.6.4 How to Search for Reputation Information
15
2.6.5 What to Do When You Find No Reputation Information
17
3.0 Overall Page Quality Rating
18
3.1 Page Quality Rating: Most Important Factors
18
3.2 Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T)
18
4.0 High Quality Pages
19
4.1 Characteristics of High Quality Pages
19
4.2 A Satisfying Amount of High Quality Main Content
20
4.3 Clear and Satisfying Website Information: Who is Responsible and Customer Service
20
4.4 Positive Reputation
20
4.5 A High Level of Expertise/Authoritativeness/Trustworthiness (E-A-T)
21
4.6 Examples of High Quality Pages
21
5.0 Highest Quality Pages
25
5.1 Very High Quality MC
25
5.2 Very Positive Reputation
25
5.3 Very High Level of E-A-T
26
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5.4 Examples of Highest Quality Pages
26
6.0 Low Quality Pages
32
6.1 Lacking Expertise, Authoritativeness, or Trustworthiness (E-A-T)
32
6.2 Low Quality Main Content
32
6.3 Unsatisfying Amount of Main Content
33
6.4 Distracting Ads/SC
33
6.5 Mixed or Mildly Negative Reputation of the Website or Creator of the Main Content
33
6.6 Unsatisfying Amount of Information about the Website or Creator of the Main Content
34
6.7 Examples of Low Quality Pages
34
7.0 Lowest Quality Pages
37
7.1 Lack of Purpose Pages
38
7.2 Pages that Fail to Achieve Their Purpose
38
7.2.1 Lowest E-A-T
38
7.2.2 No/Little Main Content
38
7.2.3 Lowest Quality Main Content
39
7.2.4 Copied Main Content
39
7.2.5 How to Determine if Content is Copied
40
7.2.6 Auto-Generated Main Content
41
7.2.7 Obstructed or Inaccessible Main Content
41
7.2.8 Inadequate Information about the Website or Creator of the Main Content
41
7.2.9 Unmaintained Websites, and Hacked, Defaced, or Spammed Pages
41
7.3 Pages that Potentially Spread Hate
42
7.4 Potentially Harmful Pages
42
7.4.1 Encourage Harm
42
7.4.2 Malicious Pages
42
7.4.3 Negative or Malicious Reputation
43
7.5 Pages that Potentially Misinform Users
43
7.6 Pages that Potentially Deceive Users
44
7.6.1 Deceptive Page Purpose
44
7.6.2 Deceptive Page Design
44
7.7 Examples of Lowest Quality Pages
46
8.0 Medium Quality Pages
53
8.1 Examples of Medium Quality Pages
54
9.0 Page Quality Rating Tasks
56
9.1 Instructions for Rating Page Quality Tasks
57
9.1.1 Rating on Your Phone
57
9.2 Reputation and E-A-T: Website or the Creators of the Main Content?
57
10.0 Page Quality Criteria for Specific Types of Pages
58
10.1 Ratings for Encyclopedia Pages
58
10.2 Ratings for Pages with Error Messages or No MC
58
10.3 Ratings for Forums and Q&A pages
59
11.0 Page Quality Rating FAQs
63
Part 2: Understanding Mobile User Needs
65
12.0 Understanding Mobile Users, Mobile Queries, and Mobile Results
65
12.1 Important Rating Definitions and Ideas
66
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12.2 Understanding the Query
67
12.3 Locale and User Location
67
12.4 Queries with an Explicit Location
68
12.5 Queries with Multiple Meanings
68
12.6 Query Meanings Can Change Over Time
69
12.7 Understanding User Intent
70
12.7.1 Know and Know Simple Queries
70
12.7.2 Do and Device Action Queries
71
12.7.3 Website Queries
72
12.7.4 Visit-in-Person Queries and User Location
73
12.7.5 Queries with Multiple User Intents
76
12.8 Understanding Result Blocks
76
12.8.1 Web Search Result Block Examples
76
12.8.2 Special Content Result Block Examples
77
12.8.3 Device Action Result Block Examples
79
12.8.4 How Device Action Results are Displayed in Rating Tasks
81
12.9 Rating on Your Phone Issues
84
Part 3: Needs Met Rating Guideline
85
13.0 Rating Using the Needs Met Scale
85
13.1 Rating Result Blocks: Block Content and Landing Pages
85
13.2 Fully Meets (FullyM)
88
13.2.1 Examples of Fully Meets (FullyM) Result Blocks
88
13.2.2 Examples of Queries that Cannot Have Fully Meets Results
97
13.3 Highly Meets (HM)
98
13.3.1 Examples of Highly Meets (HM) Result Blocks
98
13.4 Moderately Meets (MM)
108
13.4.1 Examples of Moderately Meets (MM) Result Blocks
108
13.5 Slightly Meets (SM)
110
13.5.1 Examples of Slightly Meets (SM) Result Blocks
110
13.6 Fails to Meet (FailsM)
113
13.6.1 Examples of Fails to Meet (FailsM) Result Blocks
113
14.0 Rating Porn, Foreign Language, Did Not Load, and Upsetting-Offensive Results
124
14.1 Porn Flag
124
14.2 Needs Met Rating for Porn Results
124
14.2.1 Needs Met Rating for Clear Non-Porn Intent Queries
124
14.2.2 Needs Met Rating for Possible Porn Intent Queries
125
14.2.3 Needs Met Rating for Clear Porn Intent Queries
125
14.3 Reporting Illegal Images
126
14.4 Foreign Language Flag
126
14.4.1 Using the Foreign Language Flag
126
14.4.2 Needs Met Rating for Foreign Language Results
127
14.5 Did Not Load Flag
129
14.5.1 Using the Did Not Load Flag
129
14.5.2 Needs Met Rating for Did Not Load Results
130
14.6 Upsetting-Offensive Flag
130
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14.6.1 Using the Upsetting-Offensive Flag
131
14.6.2 Needs Met Rating for Upsetting-Offensive Tolerant Queries
133
15.0 The Relationship between Page Quality and Needs Met
135
16.0 Rating Queries with Multiple Interpretations and Intents
137
16.1 Rating Queries with Both Website and Visit-in-Person Intent
137
17.0 Specificity of Queries and Landing Pages
138
18.0 Needs Met Rating and Freshness
146
19.0 Misspelled and Mistyped Queries and Results
148
19.1 Misspelled and Mistyped Queries
148
19.2 Name Queries
149
20.0 Non-Fully Meets Results for URL Queries
149
21.0 Product Queries: Importance of Browsing and Researching
151
22.0 Rating Visit-in-Person Intent Queries
152
22.1 Examples Where User Location Does (and Does Not) Matter
153
23.0 Rating English Language Results in Non-English Locales
155
23.1 Examples of English (and Non-English) Results in Non-English Locales
156
Appendix: Using the Evaluation Platform
161
24.0 Overview
161
25.0 Acquiring Tasks
161
26.0 Rating Tasks Using the Rating Interface
161
27.0 Releasing Tasks
162
28.0 Understanding the User Location on the Task Page
164
29.0 Reporting Duplicate Results in Tasks
164
29.1 Pre-Identified Duplicates
164
29.2 Rater-Identified Duplicates
165
29.3 Reporting Duplicate Results
166
30.0 Simplified Needs Met Tasks
167
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General Guidelines Overview
Welcome to the Search Quality Rating Program!
As a Search Quality Rater, you will work on many different types of rating projects. The General Guidelines primarily
cover Page Quality (PQ) rating and Needs Met (NM) rating; however, the concepts are also important for many other
types of rating tasks.
For brevity, we refer to “Search Quality Raters” as “raters” in these guidelines.
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0.0
Introduction to Search Quality Rating
0.1
The Purpose of Search Quality Rating
Your ratings will be used to evaluate search engine quality around the world. Good search engines give results that are
helpful for users in their specific language and locale.
It is important that you are familiar with and comfortable using a search engine. We encourage you to be an expert in
Google search! For example, experiment with using operators (e.g., quotes or a dash) in your searches or try using
Google’s advanced search option.
0.2
Raters Must Represent the User
It is very important for you to represent users in the locale you evaluate. You must be very familiar with the task language
and location in order to represent the experience of users in your locale. If you do not have the knowledge to do this,
please inform your employer/company.
0.3
Browser Requirements
Check with your employer/company for browser requirements. You may use helpful browser add-ons or extensions, but
please do not use add-ons or extensions that interfere with or alter the user experience of the page.
0.4
Ad Blocking Extensions
Do not use add-ons or extensions that block ads for Needs Met rating or Page Quality rating. These add-ons or
extensions may cause you to give incorrect ratings. As a rater, only use an ad blocking extension or add-on if specifically
instructed to do so in the project-specific instructions.
0.5
Internet Safety Information
In the course of your work, you will visit many different webpages. Some of them may harm your computer unless you are
careful. Please do not download any executables, applications, or other potentially dangerous files, or click on any links
that you are uncomfortable with.
It is strongly recommended that you have antivirus and antispyware protection on your computer. This software
must be updated frequently or your computer will not be protected. There are many free and for-purchase
antivirus and antispyware products available on the web.
See here for a Wikipedia page on antivirus software and here for a Wikipedia page on spyware.
We suggest that you only open files with which you are comfortable. The file formats listed below are generally
considered safe if antivirus software is in place.
.txt (text file)
.ppt or .pptx (Microsoft PowerPoint)
.doc or .docx (Microsoft Word)
.xls or .xlsx (Microsoft Excel)
.pdf (PDF) files
If you encounter a page with a warning message, such as “Warning-visiting this web site may harm your computer,” or if
your antivirus software warns you about a page, you should not try to visit the page to assign a rating.
You may also encounter pages that require RealPlayer or the Adobe Flash plug-in. These are generally safe to download.
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Part 1: Page Quality Rating Guideline
1.0
Introduction to Page Quality Rating
A Page Quality (PQ) rating task consists of a URL and a grid to record your observations, in order to guide your
exploration of the landing page and the website associated with the URL. Ultimately, the goal of Page Quality rating is to
evaluate how well the page achieves its purpose. Because different types of websites and webpages can have very
different purposes, our expectations and standards for different types of pages are also different.
Here's what you'll need to be a successful Page Quality rater:
● Your experience using the web as an ordinary user in your rating locale.
● In-depth knowledge of these guidelines.
● And most importantly—practice doing PQ rating tasks!
The examples in these guidelines are very important. Please view each one and keep in mind a few notes about the
examples:
● Webpages and websites change rapidly, so we use images or "snapshots" of webpages in most of our examples.
● The information in the examples was accurate at the time it was added, but content and websites may change
over time.
● Some examples show pages on desktop and some show pages on mobile devices.
2.0
Understanding Webpages and Websites
PQ rating requires an in-depth understanding of websites. We'll start with the basics. Along the way, we'll share important
information about Page Quality rating, so please read through this section even if you are a website expert!
2.1
Important Definitions
Here are some important definitions:
A webpage is connected to the World Wide Web and can be viewed or "visited" using a web browser (e.g., Chrome), a
browser on your phone, or a search app. In the 1990s, webpage content was mostly text and links. Today, webpage
content includes many forms of media (such as images, videos, etc.) and functionality (such as online shopping features,
email, calculator functionality, online games, etc.).
A URL is a character string that your web browser uses to “find” and display a webpage. Page Quality rating doesn't
require you to have in-depth understanding of the structure of URLs, i.e., you don’t need to know the difference between
host, domain, etc. But if you are interested, see here to read more.
A website or site is a group of World Wide Web pages usually containing hyperlinks to each other and made available
online by an individual, company, educational institution, government, or organization. Popular websites include
Facebook, Wikipedia, Yahoo, YouTube, etc.
Note: In these guidelines, we will use the word “website” to refer to a collection of pages owned and controlled by a single
entity (individual, business, etc.). But we will also use “website” to refer to major “independent” sections (or hosts) of
some websites that were created to achieve separate purposes. For example, the Yahoo website is organized into
different sections (or hosts), such as Yahoo Finance (finance.yahoo.com), Yahoo Mail (mail.yahoo.com ), Yahoo Sports
(sports.yahoo.com ), etc. Each of these has its own purpose. It’s OK to refer to each of these sections as a website; for
example, the Yahoo Finance website and the Yahoo Sports website. You may also refer to pages on Yahoo Finance or
Yahoo Sports as belonging to the Yahoo website.
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A homepage of a website is the main page of the site. It is usually the first page that users see when the site loads. For
example, http://www.apple.com is the homepage of the Apple site, http://www.yahoo.com is the homepage of the Yahoo
company site, and http://finance.yahoo.com is the homepage of Yahoo Finance. You can usually find the homepage of a
website by clicking on a “home” link or logo link on subpages of a website.
A subpage on a website is any page on the site other than the homepage. For example, http://www.apple.com/iphone is
a subpage on the Apple website, and http://finance.yahoo.com/options is a subpage on the Yahoo Finance website.
A webmaster is the person who is responsible for maintaining a website.
Important: You must be very comfortable exploring websites, both by clicking links and modifying URLs in the address
bar of your web browser. Become a website detective and explorer!
2.2
What is the Purpose of a Webpage?
The purpose of a page is the reason or reasons why the page was created. Every page on the Internet is created for a
purpose, or for multiple purposes. Most pages are created to be helpful for users, thus having a beneficial purpose.
Some pages are created merely to make money, with little or no effort to help users. Some pages are even created to
cause harm to users. The first step in understanding a page is figuring out its purpose.
Why is it important to determine the purpose of the page for PQ rating?
● The goal of PQ rating is to determine how well a page achieves its purpose. In order to assign a rating, you must
understand the purpose of the page and sometimes the website.
● By understanding the purpose of the page, you'll better understand what criteria are important to consider when
evaluating that particular page.
● Websites and pages should be created to help users. Websites and pages that are created with intent to harm
users, deceive users, or make money with no attempt to help users, should receive the Lowest PQ rating. More
on this later.
As long as the page is created to help users, we will not consider any particular page purpose or type to be higher quality
than another. For example, encyclopedia pages are not necessarily higher quality than humor pages.
Important: There are highest quality and lowest quality webpages of all different types and purposes: shopping pages,
news pages, forum pages, video pages, pages with error messages, PDFs, images, gossip pages, humor pages,
homepages, and all other types of pages. The type of page does not determine the PQ rating—you have to understand
the purpose of the page to determine the rating.
Common helpful or beneficial page purposes include (but are not limited to):
● To share information about a topic.
● To share personal or social information.
● To share pictures, videos, or other forms of media.
● To express an opinion or point of view.
● To entertain.
● To sell products or services.
● To allow users to post questions for other users to answer.
● To allow users to share files or to download software.
Here are a few examples where it is easy to understand the purpose of the page:
Type of Page
Purpose of the Page
To inform users about recent or important events.
To sell or give information about the product.
To share a cute video of a cat.
To calculate equivalent amounts in different currencies.
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Here is an example (OmNomNomNom Page) of a helpful page where the purpose of the page is not as obvious. At first
glance, this page may seem pointless or strange. However, it is a page from a humorous site that encourages users to
post photos with mouths drawn on them. The purpose of the page is humor or artistic expression. This page has a
helpful or beneficial purpose. Even though the About page on this website is not very helpful, the website explains itself
on its FAQ page.
2.3
Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) Pages
Some types of pages or topics could potentially impact a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety.
We call such pages “Your Money or Your Life” pages, or YMYL. The following are examples of YMYL topics:
News and current events: news about important topics such as international events, business, politics, science,
technology, etc. Keep in mind that not all news articles are necessarily considered YMYL (e.g., sports,
entertainment, and everyday lifestyle topics are generally not YMYL). Please use your judgment and knowledge
of your locale.
● Civics, government, and law: information important to maintaining an informed citizenry, such as information
about voting, government agencies, public institutions, social services, and legal issues (e.g., divorce, child
custody, adoption, creating a will, etc.).
● Finance: financial advice or information regarding investments, taxes, retirement planning, loans, banking, or
insurance, particularly webpages that allow people to make purchases or transfer money online.
● Shopping: information about or services related to research or purchase of goods/services, particularly
webpages that allow people to make purchases online.
● Health and safety: advice or information about medical issues, drugs, hospitals, emergency preparedness, how
dangerous an activity is, etc.
Groups of people: information about or claims related to groups of people, including but not limited to those
grouped on the basis of race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, age, nationality, veteran status, sexual orientation,
gender or gender identity.
● Other: there are many other topics related to big decisions or important aspects of people’s lives which thus may
be considered YMYL, such as fitness and nutrition, housing information, choosing a college, finding a job, etc.
Please use your judgment.
We have very high Page Quality rating standards for YMYL pages because low quality YMYL pages could potentially
negatively impact a person’s happiness, health, financial stability, or safety.
2.4
Understanding Webpage Content
All of the content on a webpage can be classified as one of the following: Main Content (MC), Supplementary Content
(SC), or Advertisements/Monetization (Ads). In order to understand the purpose of a webpage and do PQ rating, you will
need to be able to distinguish among these different parts of the page.
Webpage design can be complicated, so make sure to click around and explore the page. See what kind of content is
behind the tabs and test out the interactive page features. Content behind the tabs may be considered part of the MC,
SC, or Ads, depending on what the content is.
2.4.1 Identifying the Main Content (MC)
Main Content is any part of the page that directly helps the page achieve its purpose. Webmasters directly control the MC
of the page (except for user-generated content). MC can be text, images, videos, page features (e.g., calculators,
games), or it can be user-generated content such as videos, reviews, articles, etc. that users have added or uploaded to
the page. Note that tabs on some pages lead to even more information (e.g., customer reviews) and can sometimes be
considered part of the MC of the page.
The MC also includes the title at the top of the page (example ). Descriptive MC titles allow users to make informed
decisions about what pages to visit. Helpful titles summarize the MC on the page.
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Type of Page and Purpose
MC Highlighted in Yellow
News website homepage: the purpose is to inform users about recent or important events.
News article page: the purpose is to communicate information about an event or news topic.
Store product page: the purpose is to sell or give information about the product.
● Content behind the Reviews, Shipping, and Safety Information tabs are considered to be
part of the MC.
Video page: the purpose is to share a video about cats.
Currency converter page: the purpose is to calculate equivalent amounts in different currencies.
Blog post page: the purpose is to share music used on a TV show.
Search engine homepage: the purpose is to allow users to enter a query and search the Internet.
Bank login page: the purpose is to allow users to log in to bank online.
2.4.2 Identifying the Supplementary Content (SC)
Supplementary Content contributes to a good user experience on the page, but does not directly help the page achieve its
purpose. SC is controlled by webmasters and is an important part of the user experience. One common type of SC is
navigation links that allow users to visit other parts of the website. Note that in some cases, content behind tabs may be
considered part of the SC of the page.
Sometimes the easiest way to identify SC is to look for the parts of the page that are not MC or Ads.
Type of Page and Purpose
SC Highlighted in Blue
News article page: the purpose is to communicate information about an event or news topic.
Store product page: the purpose is to sell or give information about the product.
Video page: the purpose is to share a video about cats.
Blog post page: the purpose is to share music used on a TV show.
2.4.3 Identifying Advertisements/Monetization (Ads)
Ads may contribute to a good user experience. Advertisements/Monetization (Ads) is content and/or links that are
displayed for the purpose of monetizing (making money from) the page. The presence or absence of Ads is not by itself a
reason for a High or Low quality rating. Without advertising and monetization, some webpages could not exist because it
costs money to maintain a website and create high quality content.
There are several different ways to monetize a webpage, including advertisements and affiliate programs. See here for
more information on website monetization. Note that monetization on mobile pages may be more subtle than
monetization on desktop pages.
The most common type of monetization is advertisements. Ads may be labeled as "ads," "sponsored links," “sponsored
listings,” “sponsored results,” etc. Usually, you can click on the links or mouse over the content to determine whether they
are Ads, as they often refer to a URL outside of that website. Ads may change when you reload the page, and different
users may see different Ads on the same page.
Webmasters can choose to display Ads on their page (such as by joining an advertising network ), but they may not
always directly control the content of the Ads. However, we will consider a website responsible for the overall quality of
the Ads displayed.
Important: For the purpose of this guideline, we will consider monetized links of any type to be “Ads.” See here for
different types of website monetization.
Type of Page and Purpose
Ads Highlighted in Red
News article page: the purpose is to communicate information about an event or news topic.
Video page: the purpose is to share a video about cats.
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Type of Page and Purpose
Ads Highlighted in Red
Blog post page: the purpose is to share music used on a TV show.
Store product page: the purpose is to sell or give information about the product.
2.4.4 Summary of the Parts of the Page
Let's put it all together.
Main Content (MC) is any part of the page that directly helps the page achieve its purpose. MC is (or should be!) the
reason the page exists. The quality of the MC plays a very large role in the Page Quality rating of a webpage.
Supplementary Content (SC) is also important. SC can help a page better achieve its purpose or it can detract from
the overall experience.
● Many pages have advertisements/monetization (Ads). Without advertising and monetization, some webpages
could not exist because it costs money to maintain a website and create high quality content. The presence or
absence of Ads is not by itself a reason for a High or Low quality rating.
On some pages, reviews may be considered MC, and on other pages they may be considered SC. Use your best
judgment and think about the purpose of the page.
Do not worry too much about identifying every little part of the page. Think about which parts of the page are the MC.
Next, look for the Ads. Anything left over can be considered SC.
MC, SC, and Ads
Type of Page and Purpose
Highlighted
News article page: the purpose is to communicate information about an event or news topic.
Store product page: the purpose is to sell or give information about the product.
Video page: the purpose is to share a video about cats.
Currency converter page: the purpose is to calculate equivalent amounts in different currencies.
Blog post page: the purpose is to share music used on a TV show.
Bank login page: the purpose is to allow users to log in to bank online.
2.5
Understanding the Website
Pages often make more sense when viewed as part of a website. Some of the criteria in Page Quality rating are based on
the website the page belongs to.
In order to understand a website, look for information about the website on the website itself. Websites are usually very
eager to tell you all about themselves!
You must also look for reputation information about the website. We need to find out what outside, independent sources
say about the website. When there is disagreement between what the website says about itself and what reputable
independent sources say about the website, we’ll trust the independent sources.
2.5.1 Finding the Homepage
The homepage of a website usually contains or has links to important information about the website. Webmasters usually
make it easy to get to the homepage of the website from any page on the site.
Here's how to find the homepage of a website:
● Examine the landing page of the URL in your PQ rating task.
● Find and click on the link labeled “home” or “main page.”
● Having trouble finding it? Try using “Ctrl-F” (“command-F” on a Mac) to search the page for the text “home” or
“main.” You may also try clicking on the website logo, which is usually at the top of the page.
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Sometimes, you may be given a webpage or website that appears to have no navigation links, no homepage link, and no
logo or other means to find the homepage. Even some High or Highest quality pages lack a way to navigate to the
homepage. If you can't find a link to the homepage, modify the URL by removing everything to the right of “.com,” “.org,”
“.net,” “.info,” etc. and refresh the page.
Occasionally, your rating task will include a URL for which there are two or more justifiable “homepage” candidates. For
example, you may not be sure whether the homepage of the URL http://finance.yahoo.com/news/category-stocks is
Important: When you have more than one homepage “candidate,” please use whichever one offers the most information
about the specific webpage in the rating task. Use your judgment. The goal is to understand the webpage and the
website(s) it is associated with, not find the one unique, correct homepage.
In the following examples, we have included the URL of the page to be evaluated in the rating task, as well as the URL of
its associated homepage. We have also included an image that shows where to click on the landing page to navigate to
the homepage. In the image, you will see a red box around the link or logo you would click to navigate to the homepage.
Image that shows where to click to get to the
URL of the Task Page
Homepage of the Website
homepage
This “WILLIAMS-SONOMA” logo shown in the
upper center of the page is clickable and takes
users to the homepage of the website.
In this case, we will consider
http://answers.yahoo.com the homepage, rather
than http://www.yahoo.com . Why? Because
clicking on the logo takes the user to
http://answers.yahoo.com . In addition,
http://answers.yahoo.com has information about
This “YAHOO ANSWERS” logo in the upper left
the Yahoo Answers website. It is very difficult to
part of the page is clickable and takes users to
find specific information about
the homepage of the website.
In this case, we will consider the Harvard Medical
School page at http://hms.harvard.edu to be the
homepage, rather than http://www.harvard.edu
(which is the homepage of Harvard University).
Clicking the logo at the top of
This “Harvard Medical School” logo in the upper
left part of the page is clickable and takes users to
takes users to http://hms.harvard.edu , not to
the homepage of the Harvard Medical School
website.
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2.5.2 Finding Who is Responsible for the Website and Who Created the Content on the Page
Every page belongs to a website, and it should be clear:
● Who (what individual, company, business, foundation, etc.) is responsible for the website.
● Who (what individual, company, business, foundation, etc.) created the content on the page you are evaluating.
Websites are usually very clear about who created the content on the page. There are many reasons for this:
● Commercial websites may have copyrighted material they want to protect.
● Businesses want users to know who they are.
● Artists, authors, musicians, and other original content creators usually want to be known and appreciated.
● Foundations often want support and even volunteers.
● High quality stores want users to feel comfortable buying online.
● Websites want users to be able to distinguish between content created by themselves versus content that was
added by other users.
Most websites have “contact us” or “about us” or “about” pages that provide information about who owns the site. Many
companies have an entire website or blog devoted to who they are and what they are doing, what jobs are available, etc.
Google and Marriott are both examples of this, and there are many others:
Often a business or organization is responsible for the content of a website, not an individual person. The IBM
Corporation is responsible for the content on ibm.com. The Cleveland Clinic is responsible for the content on
clevelandclinic.org. An individual is not responsible for the content on these websites, even though many individuals
contributed to creating and maintaining the content. In these cases, we will view the business or organization as
responsible for the content on every single page, as well as maintenance of the website.
On some websites, users create the MC of many pages, while the business or organization itself maintains the website.
The company Facebook is responsible for the Facebook website, but individuals create the content on their personal
Facebook pages. The company Wikipedia is responsible for the Wikipedia website, but individuals create article content.
Other websites with user-generated content include YouTube, Twitter, other social networking websites, other article
publishing websites, Q&A websites, forums, etc. For these websites, you must look at each page to determine the
author(s) or creator(s) of the content on that page.
Finally, there are some websites that show licensed or syndicated content. This means that the website has paid money
or has some business relationship with the creator of the content. In these cases, we will consider the website to carry
responsibility for the quality of licensed or syndicated content, even if it wasn’t created by the website itself.
2.5.3 Finding About Us, Contact Information, and Customer Service Information
Many websites are interested in communicating with their users. There are many reasons that users might have for
contacting a website, from reporting problems such as broken pages, to asking for content removal. Many websites offer
multiple ways for users to contact the website: email addresses, phone numbers, physical addresses, web contact forms,
etc. Sometimes, this contact information is even organized by department and provides the names of individuals to
contact.
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The types and amount of contact information needed depend on the type of website. Contact information and customer
service information are extremely important for websites that handle money, such as stores, banks, credit card
companies, etc. Users need a way to ask questions or get help when a problem occurs.
For shopping websites, we'll ask you to do some special checks. Look for contact information—including the store’s
policies on payment, exchanges, and returns. Sometimes this information is listed under “customer service.”
Some kinds of websites need fewer details and a smaller amount of contact information for their purpose. For example,
humor websites may not need the level of detailed contact information we would expect from online banking websites.
Occasionally, you may encounter a website with a legitimate reason for anonymity. For example, personal websites may
not include personal contact information such as an individual’s home address or phone number. Similarly, websites with
user-generated content may allow the author to identify him/herself with an alias or username only.
To find contact or customer service information for a website, start with the homepage. Look for a “contact us” or
“customer service” link. Explore the website if you cannot find a “contact us” page. Sometimes you will find the contact
information on a “corporate site” link or even on the company’s Facebook page. Be a detective!
Note that different locales may have their own specific standards and requirements for what information should be
available on the website.
2.6
Reputation of the Website or Creator of the Main Content
A website's reputation is based on the experience of real users, as well as the opinion of people who are experts in the
topic of the website. Keep in mind that websites often represent real companies, organizations, and other entities.
Therefore, reputation research applies to both the website and the actual company, organization, or entity that the website
is representing.
A website's reputation can also help you understand what a website is best known for, and as a result how well it
accomplishes its purpose. For example, newspapers may be known for high quality, independent investigative reporting
while satire websites may be known for their humor.
Many websites are eager to tell users how great they are. Some webmasters have read these rating guidelines and write
“reviews” on various review websites. But for Page Quality rating, you must also look for outside, independent reputation
information about the website. When the website says one thing about itself, but reputable external sources disagree with
what the website says, trust the external sources.
Your job is to truly evaluate the Page Quality of the site, not just blindly accept information on one or two pages of the
website. Be skeptical of claims that websites make about themselves.
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2.6.1 Research on the Reputation of the Website or Creator of the Main Content
Use reputation research to find out what real users, as well as experts, think about a website. Look for reviews,
references, recommendations by experts, news articles, and other credible information created/written by individuals
about the website.
Stores frequently have user ratings, which can help you understand a store’s reputation based on the reports of people
who actually shop there. We consider a large number of positive user reviews as evidence of positive reputation.
Many other kinds of websites have reputations as well. For example, you might find that a newspaper (with an associated
website) has won journalistic awards. Prestigious awards, such as the Pulitzer Prize award, or a history of high quality
original reporting are strong evidence of positive reputation.
When a high level of authoritativeness or expertise is needed, the reputation of a website should be judged on what expert
opinions have to say. Recommendations from expert sources, such as professional societies, are strong evidence of very
positive reputation.
Reputation research is necessary for all websites you encounter. Do not just assume websites you personally use have a
good reputation. Please do research! You might be surprised at what you find.
2.6.2 Sources of Reputation Information
Look for information written by a person, not statistics or other machine-compiled information. News articles, Wikipedia
articles, blog posts, magazine articles, forum discussions, and ratings from independent organizations can all be sources
of reputation information. Look for independent, credible sources of information.
Sometimes, you will find information about a website that is not related to its reputation. For example, pages like Alexa
have information about Internet traffic to the website, but do not provide evidence of positive or negative reputation. You
can ignore this information since it's not helpful for Page Quality rating.
2.6.3 Customer Reviews of Stores/Businesses
Customer reviews can be helpful for assessing the reputation of a store or business. However, you should interpret these
reviews with care, particularly if there are only a few. Be skeptical of both positive and negative user reviews. Anyone can
write them, including the creator of the website or someone the store or business hires for this purpose. See here for a
New York Times article on fake reviews and here for a Guardian article on fake reviews.
When interpreting customer reviews, try to find as many as possible. Any store or website can get a few negative
reviews. This is completely normal and expected. Large stores and companies have thousands of reviews and most
receive some negative ones.
It is also important to read the reviews because the content of the reviews matter, not just the number. Credible,
convincing reports of fraud and financial wrongdoing is evidence of extremely negative reputation. A single encounter
with a rude clerk or the delayed receipt of a single package should not be considered negative reputation information.
Please use your judgment.
2.6.4 How to Search for Reputation Information
Here is how to research the reputation of the website:
1. Identify the “homepage” of the website. For example, for the IBM website, ibm.com is the homepage. You may
need to identify the creator of the content, if it is different from that of the overall website.
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2.
Using ibm.com as an example, try one or more of the following searches on Google:
[ibm -site:ibm.com]: A search for IBM that excludes pages on ibm.com.
[“ibm.com” -site:ibm.com]: A search for “ibm.com” that excludes pages on ibm.com.
[ibm reviews -site:ibm.com] A search for reviews of IBM that excludes pages on ibm.com.
[“ibm.com” reviews -site:ibm.com]: A search for reviews of “ibm.com” that excludes pages on ibm.com.
For content creators, try searching for their name or alias.
Note: When searching for reputation information, try to find sources that were not written or created by the
website, the company itself, or the individual. For example, IBM might have official Facebook or Twitter pages
that it closely maintains, which would not be considered independent sources of reputation information about the
company. See here for a Wikipedia article on identifying and using independent sources.
3.
Look for articles, reviews, forum posts, discussions, etc. written by people about the website. For businesses,
there are many sources of reputation information and reviews. Here are some examples: Yelp, Better Business
Bureau (a nonprofit organization that focuses on the trustworthiness of businesses and charities), Amazon , and
Google Shopping . You can try searching on specific sites to find reviews. For example, you can try [ibm
site:bbb.org] or [“ibm.com” site:bbb.org].
For content creators, look for biographical data and other sources that are not written by the individual.
Note: You will sometimes find high ratings on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website because there is very
little data on the business, not because the business has a positive reputation. However, very low ratings on BBB
are usually the result of multiple unresolved complaints. Please consider very low ratings on the BBB site to be
evidence for a negative reputation.
4.
See if there is a Wikipedia article or news article from a well-known news site. Wikipedia can be a good source of
information about companies, organizations, and content creators. For example, try [ibm site:en.wikipedia.org] or
[“ibm.com” site:en.wikipedia.org]. News articles and Wikipedia articles can help you learn about a company and
may include information specific to reputation, such as awards and other forms of recognition, or also
controversies and issues. Note that some Wikipedia articles include a message warning users that there are
disagreements on some of the content, or that the content may be outdated. This may be an indication that
additional research is necessary.
Here are some examples of reputation information:
Website
Reputation Information About the Site
Description
Positive reputation information: Users in the U.S.
can obtain free credit reports on this website by
providing their Social Security Number. Note that
the Wikipedia article tells us that
“AnnualCreditReport.com is the only federally
mandated and authorized source for obtaining a
free credit report.”
Note: Almost every website will have complaints
about customer service, so it is important to look at
various sources and reviews in your reputation
research.
Positive reputation information: According to
Wikipedia, the Cleveland Clinic “is currently
regarded as one of the top 4 hospitals in the United
States as rated by U.S. News & World Report,”
which you will also find in the article on the best
hospitals in the U.S. Users can trust medical
information on this website.
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Website
Reputation Information About the Site
Description
Positive reputation information: Notice the
highlighted section in the Wikipedia article about
The Christian Science Monitor newspaper, which
tells us that the newspaper has won seven Pulitzer
Prize awards. From this information, we can infer
that the csmonitor.com website has a positive
reputation.
Positive reputation information: We learn in the
Wikipedia article that “Kernel.org is a
main repository of source code for the Linux kernel,
the base of the popular Linux operating system. It
makes all versions of the source code available to all
users. It also hosts various other projects,
like Google Android. The main purpose of the site is
to host a repository for Linux kernel developers and
maintainers of Linux distributions.”
Extremely negative reputation information: This
business has a BBB rating of F (i.e., lowest rating
given by BBB). There is a news article about
financial fraud. There are many reviews on websites
describing users sending money and not receiving
anything from various sources.
Extremely negative/malicious reputation
information: This website engaged in criminal
behavior such as physically threatening users.
Extremely negative reputation information: There
are many detailed negative articles on news sites
and charity watchdog sites about this organization
describing fraud and financial mishandling.
2.6.5 What to Do When You Find No Reputation Information
You should expect to find reputation information for large businesses and websites of large organizations, as well as
well-known content creators.
Frequently, you will find little or no information about the reputation of a website for a small organization. This is not
indicative of positive or negative reputation. Many small, local businesses or community organizations have a small “web
presence” and rely on word of mouth, not online reviews. For these smaller businesses and organizations, lack of
reputation should not be considered an indication of low page quality.
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3.0
Overall Page Quality Rating
At a high level, here are the steps of Page Quality rating:
1. Understand the true purpose of the page. Websites or pages without any beneficial purpose, including pages that
are created with no attempt to help users, or pages that potentially spread hate, cause harm, or misinform or
deceive users, should receive the Lowest rating. No further assessment is necessary.
2. Otherwise, the PQ rating is based on how well the page achieves its purpose using the criteria outlined in the
following sections on Lowest, Low, Medium, High, and Highest quality pages.
On Page Quality rating tasks, you will use the Page Quality sliding scale (slider) to assign the overall PQ rating. The
slider looks like this:
You may also use the in-between ratings of Lowest+, Low+, Medium+, and High+. Please interpret the “+” as “+ ½,”
meaning that the Lowest+ rating is halfway between Lowest and Low, Low+ is halfway between Low and Medium, etc.
In the following sections, you will learn about characteristics of Lowest, Low, Medium, High, and Highest quality pages.
3.1
Page Quality Rating: Most Important Factors
Here are the most important factors to consider when selecting an overall Page Quality rating:
The Purpose of the Page
Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness: This is an important quality characteristic. Use your research
on the additional factors below to inform your rating.
Main Content Quality and Amount: The rating should be based on the landing page of the task URL.
Website Information/information about who is responsible for the MC: Find information about the website as
well as the creator of the MC.
Website Reputation/reputation about who is responsible for the MC: Links to help with reputation research
will be provided.
Note: Some tasks may ask you to view the page on your phone, but to do research (e.g., finding website information and
reputation) on your desktop. Other tasks may ask you to do everything on desktop. Please follow instructions in the task.
3.2
Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T)
Remember that the first step of PQ rating is to understand the true purpose of the page. Websites or pages without some
sort of beneficial purpose, including pages that are created with no attempt to help users, or pages that potentially spread
hate, cause harm, or misinform or deceive users, should receive the Lowest rating.
For all other pages that have a beneficial purpose, the amount of expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness (E-A-T)
is very important. Please consider:
● The expertise of the creator of the MC.
● The authoritativeness of the creator of the MC, the MC itself, and the website.
● The trustworthiness of the creator of the MC, the MC itself, and the website.
Keep in mind that there are high E-A-T pages and websites of all types, even gossip websites, fashion websites, humor
websites, forum and Q&A pages, etc. In fact, some types of information are found almost exclusively on forums and
discussions, where a community of experts can provide valuable perspectives on specific topics.
● High E-A-T medical advice should be written or produced by people or organizations with appropriate medical
expertise or accreditation. High E-A-T medical advice or information should be written or produced in a
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professional style and should be edited, reviewed, and updated on a regular basis.
● High E-A-T news articles should be produced with journalistic professionalism—they should contain factually
accurate content presented in a way that helps users achieve a better understanding of events. High E-A-T news
sources typically have published established editorial policies and robust review processes (example 1, example
2 ).
● High E-A-T information pages on scientific topics should be produced by people or organizations with appropriate
scientific expertise and represent well-established scientific consensus on issues where such consensus exists.
● High E-A-T financial advice, legal advice, tax advice, etc., should come from trustworthy sources and be
maintained and updated regularly.
● High E-A-T advice pages on topics such as home remodeling (which can cost thousands of dollars and impact
your living situation) or advice on parenting issues (which can impact the future happiness of a family) should also
come from “expert” or experienced sources that users can trust.
● High E-A-T pages on hobbies, such as photography or learning to play a guitar, also require expertise.
Some topics require less formal expertise. Many people write extremely detailed, helpful reviews of products or
restaurants. Many people share tips and life experiences on forums, blogs, etc. These ordinary people may be
considered experts in topics where they have life experience. If it seems as if the person creating the content has the type
and amount of life experience to make him or her an “expert” on the topic, we will value this “everyday expertise” and not
penalize the person/webpage/website for not having “formal” education or training in the field.
It’s even possible to have everyday expertise in YMYL topics. For example, there are forums and support pages for
people with specific diseases. Sharing personal experience is a form of everyday expertise. Consider this example .
Here, forum participants are telling how long their loved ones lived with liver cancer. This is an example of sharing
personal experiences (in which they are experts), not medical advice. Specific medical information and advice (rather
than descriptions of life experiences) should come from doctors or other health professionals.
Think about the topic of the page. What kind of expertise is required for the page to achieve its purpose well? The
standard for expertise depends on the topic of the page.
4.0
High Quality Pages
In this section, we will describe characteristics of High quality pages and give many examples. Examples help calibrate
your ratings, so please review each one.
4.1
Characteristics of High Quality Pages
High quality pages exist for almost any beneficial purpose, from giving information to making people laugh to expressing
oneself artistically to purchasing products or services online.
What makes a High quality page? A High quality page should have a beneficial purpose and achieve that purpose well.
In addition, High quality pages have the following characteristics:
● High level of Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T).
A satisfying amount of high quality MC, including a descriptive or helpful title.
● Satisfying website information and/or information about who is responsible for the website. If the page is primarily
for shopping or includes financial transactions, then it should have satisfying customer service information.
● Positive website reputation for a website that is responsible for the MC on the page. Positive reputation of the
creator of the MC, if different from that of the website.
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4.2
A Satisfying Amount of High Quality Main Content
The quality of the MC is one of the most important criteria in Page Quality rating, and informs the E-A-T of the page. For
all types of webpages, creating high quality MC takes a significant amount of at least one of the following: time, effort,
expertise, and talent/skill. For news articles and information pages, high quality MC must be factually accurate for the
topic and must be supported by expert consensus where such consensus exists.
For each page you evaluate, spend a few minutes examining the MC before drawing a conclusion about it. Read the
article, watch the video, examine the pictures, use the calculator, play the online game, etc. Remember that MC also
includes page features and functionality, so test the page out. For example, if the page is a product page on a store
website, put at least one product in the cart to make sure the shopping cart is functioning. If the page is an online game,
spend a few minutes playing it.
The purpose of the page will help you determine what high quality content means for that page. For example, High quality
information pages should be factually accurate, clearly written, and comprehensive. High quality shopping content should
allow users to find the products they want and to purchase the products easily. High quality humor or satire should be
entertaining, while factual accuracy is not a requirement as long as the page would be understood as satire by users.
The amount of content necessary for the page to be satisfying depends on the topic and purpose of the page. A High
quality page on a broad topic with a lot of available information will have more content than a High quality page on a
narrower topic. Here are some examples of pages with a satisfying amount of high quality MC.
Webpage
Discussion
The Siberian Husky (a breed of dog) is a narrow topic. Although this encyclopedia landing page has less MC
than some encyclopedia pages on broader topics, it has a satisfying amount of clearly written, high quality MC.
This shopping page on a reputable shopping website has a satisfying amount of high quality MC. The page
provides the manufacturer’s product specs, as well as original product information, over 90 user reviews,
shipping and returns information, multiple images of the product, etc. Note: Some of the MC is behind links on
the page (“item details,” “item specifications,” “guest reviews,” etc.). Even though you have to click these links
to see the content, it is still considered MC.
This movie review written by a movie critic has a satisfying amount of high quality MC. Time, effort, and
talent/skill went into writing this movie review.
4.3
Clear and Satisfying Website Information: Who is Responsible and Customer Service
Understanding who is responsible for a website is a critical part of assessing E-A-T for most types of websites. High
quality pages should have clear information about the website so that users feel comfortable trusting the site.
The amount of information needed for E-A-T assessment depends on the type of website. For example, YMYL websites
demand a high degree of trust, so they generally need satisfying information about who is responsible for the content of
the site. In addition, High quality stores and financial transaction websites also need clear and satisfying customer service
information to help users resolve issues.
Other websites that are not YMYL websites may need less website information, depending on the purpose of the website.
For example, an email address may be sufficient for some non-YMYL websites.
4.4
Positive Reputation
Reputation is an important criteria when using the High rating, and informs the E-A-T of the page. While a page can merit
the High rating with no reputation, the High rating cannot be used for any website that has a convincing negative
reputation. Remember that when doing research, make sure to consider the reasons behind a negative rating and not just
the rating itself.
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4.5
A High Level of Expertise/Authoritativeness/Trustworthiness (E-A-T)
High quality pages and websites need enough expertise to be authoritative and trustworthy on their topic. Remember that
there are “expert” websites of all types, even gossip websites, fashion websites, humor websites, forum and Q&A pages,
etc. In fact, some types of information are found almost exclusively on forums and discussions, where a community of
experts can provide valuable perspectives on specific topics.
Think about the topic of the page. What kind of expertise is required for the page to achieve its purpose well? The
standard for expertise depends on the topic of the page. For example, high quality news articles and information pages
on scientific topics should represent established scientific consensus where such consensus exists.
4.6
Examples of High Quality Pages
Webpage/Type of Content
High Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
Homepage of a newspaper
● Positive reputation (website)
This is the homepage of a newspaper that has
(YMYL)
won several Pulitzer Prizes and Overseas
Press Club awards. This newspaper has a
positive reputation for its objective reporting.
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
This is an article on a newspaper website that
● Positive reputation (website)
has won many Pulitzer Prize awards and has a
Article on a newspaper website
positive reputation for its investigative
● High E-A-T of the publisher and/or author
(YMYL)
journalism. There is a satisfying amount of high
quality MC. While there are Ads on the page,
the MC is easy to find and the Ads are clearly
labeled as Ads.
A satisfying amount of high quality MC
This is an opinion piece written by the Editorial
Opinion article on a newspaper
Positive reputation (website)
Board of the largest newspaper in the U.S.
website
● High E-A-T of the publisher and/or author
state of Minnesota. The page is clearly labelled
as an opinion piece, welcoming a new football
coach to the University of Minnesota.
The purpose of this page is to display the
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
official US Naval Observatory Master Clock
US Naval Observatory Master
time in 7 different time zones. The page
Clock page
displays the clock information in a clear,
easy-to-read format. The Naval Observatory is
highly trustworthy and authoritative for this type
of information.
● High quality humorous MC
● Positive reputation (website)
This website is well-known for its humorous,
Article on a humor website
● Expertise as a farcical humor website
satirical articles. This is a cute example of a
satisfying and funny article.
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Webpage/Type of Content
High Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is an “about us” page on a restaurant
website. This page provides information on
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
when the restaurant opened and what visitors
Local fish & chips restaurant
can expect. Other pages on the website
provide information about the restaurant
including the address, menu, other contact
information, etc. This website is highly
authoritative because it is about itself.
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
This is the News and Updates section of a
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
local preservation center selling poultry,
Local preservation center
vegetables, and more.
Note: This example was added in 2014 so the
“News and Updates” were timely.
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
This is a blog post on a newspaper that has
● Very positive reputation (website)
won a variety of awards, such as the Pulitzer
● Specifically, high E-A-T and positive
Parenting article about strollers
Prize, George Polk Award, Peabody Award,
reputation for this specific blog and author
etc. The author of this blog post has become
known as an expert on parenting issues. She
is a regular contributor to this and other media
websites.
The purpose of this page is to allow users to
buy a school backpack. The page provides a
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
lot of different backpack options, and some of
Backpack shopping page on a
● Positive reputation (website)
them have user reviews.
popular store website (YMYL)
This is a well-known, reputable merchant, with
detailed Customer Service information on the
site.
This company sells its own line of high end,
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
fashionable baby and children’s furniture and
Bathroom décor page on a store
● Positive reputation (website)
accessories. It has a positive reputation as well
website (YMYL)
as expertise in these specific types of goods.
Many products sold on the site are unique to
this company.
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Webpage/Type of Content
High Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
very high quality MC
There is a very large quantity of MC on this
TomTom GPS page on an
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
page. Note that the tabs on the page lead to
electronics website (YMYL)
● Positive reputation (website)
even more information, including many
customer reviews. The tabs should be
considered part of the MC.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
very high quality MC
Saturday Night Live video on a
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
The MC of this video page is an episode of
video website
Saturday Night Live, a very popular television
show.
This is a humorous, high quality, well produced
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
video with more than 6.5 million views (and
● High E-A-T (everyday expertise) on the
counting), illustrating the proper care and
“An Engineer’s Guide to Cats”
topic of cat ownership
practical benefits of cats. The two engineers in
video
the video have everyday expertise on cat
ownership. For a humorous video like this one,
expertise does not have to be in the form of a
trained veterinarian.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
very high quality MC
Online game
● Positive reputation (website) as an
Highly engaging game with multiple levels that
educational tool for kids
could entertain a child for hours. This website
has a positive reputation for educating children
about animals.
The question on the page asks how long
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC in
people live with cancer. There are many
How long do cancer patients live
the form of personal narratives
responses describing how long a loved one
(YMYL)
lived after diagnosis. There is very little
medical advice and the focus of the page is
sharing personal experience. Many responses
are heartfelt and well written.
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Webpage/Type of Content
High Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is a detailed article about the American
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Civil War. The citations support the E-A-T of
high quality MC
this article.
Encyclopedia article about the
● Positive reputation (website)
American Civil War
● High E-A-T for the article
Note: Although much of the content is visible on
the mobile page, we consider the content under
the headings (which you need to expand) to be
part of the MC. (To see the screenshot, you will
need to zoom in to the image.)
This forum is well-known for discussions on
luxury designer purses. On this particular
forum page, members are consulting forum
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
experts who have expertise authenticating bags
Authenticating a luxury designer
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
from this brand. These experts can tell if a
purse
particular bag is authentic or fake. While there
is an ad at the top and a few ads within the
forum message, it does not distract from the
MC, which is easy to find.
(To see the screenshot, you will need to zoom
in to the image.)
This discussion focuses on the landscaping for
● High E-A-T for the purpose of the page
a particular paludarium (an aquarium with
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
terrestrial and aquatic elements). There is a lot
Landscaping an aquarium
of discussion and interaction between forum
members about the types of materials and
species used in the aquarium. The posts show
expertise in a niche topic aquarium
landscaping.
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5.0
Highest Quality Pages
Highest quality pages are created to serve a beneficial purpose and achieve their purpose very well. The distinction
between High and Highest is based on the quality and quantity of MC, as well as the level of reputation and E-A-T.
What makes a page Highest quality? In addition to the attributes of a High quality page, a Highest quality page must
have at least one of the following characteristics:
● Very high level of Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T).
A very satisfying amount of high or highest quality MC.
● Very positive website reputation for a website that is responsible for the MC on the page. Very positive reputation
of the creator of the MC, if different from that of the website.
5.1
Very High Quality MC
We will consider the MC of the page to be very high or highest quality when it is created with a high degree of time and
effort, and in particular, expertise, talent, and skill—this may provide evidence for the E-A-T of the page. Very high quality
MC may be created by experts, hobbyists, or even people with everyday expertise. Our standards depend on the purpose
of the page and the type of content. For YMYL topics, there is a high standard for accuracy and well-established
medical/scientific/historical consensus where such consensus exists.
A factor that often distinguishes very high quality MC is the creation of unique and original content for the specific website.
While what constitutes original content may be very different depending on the type of website, here are some examples:
For news: very high quality MC is original reporting that provides information that would not otherwise have been
known had the article not revealed it. Original, in-depth, and investigative reporting requires a high degree of skill,
time, and effort. Often very high quality news content will include a description of primary sources and other
original reporting referenced during the content creation process. Very high quality news content must be accurate
and should meet professional journalistic standards.
For artistic content (videos, images, photography, writing, etc.): very high quality MC is unique and original
content created by highly skilled and talented artists or content creators. Such artistic content requires a high
degree of skill/talent, time, and effort. If the artistic content is related to a YMYL topic (e.g., artistic content with
the purpose of informing or swaying opinion about YMYL topics), YMYL standards should apply.
For informational content: very high quality MC is original, accurate, comprehensive, clearly communicated,
professionally presented, and should reflect expert consensus as appropriate. Expectations for different types of
information may vary. For example, scientific papers have a different set of standards than information about a
hobby such as stamp collecting. However, all types of very high quality informational content share common
attributes of accuracy, comprehensiveness, and clear communication, in addition to meeting standards
appropriate to the topic or field.
The Highest rating may be justified for pages with a satisfying or comprehensive amount of very high quality MC.
5.2
Very Positive Reputation
Extensive reputation research is important when giving Highest ratings. Very positive reputation is often based on
prestigious awards or recommendations from known experts or professional societies on the topic of the page. Wikipedia
and other informational sources can be a good starting point for reputation research.
For YMYL topics especially, careful checks for reputation are required. YMYL reputation should be based on evidence
from experts, professional societies, awards, etc. For shopping pages, experts could include people who have used the
store’s website to make purchases; whereas for medical advice pages, experts should be people or organizations with
appropriate medical expertise or accreditation. Please review section 2.3 for a summary of types of YMYL pages/topics.
For some topics, such as humor or recipes, less formal expertise is OK. For these topics, popularity, user engagement,
and user reviews can be considered evidence of reputation. For topics that need less formal expertise, websites can be
considered to have a positive reputation if they are highly popular and well-loved for their topic or content type, and are
focused on helping users.
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5.3
Very High Level of E-A-T
Highest quality pages and websites have a very high level of expertise or are highly authoritative or highly trustworthy.
Formal expertise is important for YMYL topics such as medical, financial, or legal advice. Expertise may be less formal for
topics such as recipes or humor. An expert page on cooking may be a page on a professional chef’s website, or it may be
a video from an expert content creator who uploads very high quality cooking videos on YouTube and is one of the most
well-known and popular content creators for recipes in their area of expertise. Please value life experience and “everyday
expertise” as appropriate. For some topics, the most expert sources of information are ordinary people sharing their life
experiences on personal blogs, videos, forums, reviews, discussions, etc.
Think about what expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness mean for the topic of the page. Who are the experts?
What makes a source trustworthy for the topic? What makes a website highly authoritative for the topic? Standards for
very high E-A-T will differ depending on the topic of the page. YMYL topics will require higher standards.
5.4
Examples of Highest Quality Pages
Webpage/Type of Content
Highest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page, including of the publisher
This is a feature article from a newspaper that
and/or authors for a news article
has won numerous awards (such as the
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Pulitzer Prize, James Beard Award, and
Article on a newspaper website
Scripps Howard Award).
very high quality MC for the purpose of
(YMYL)
the page
● Very positive reputation (website)
The page has a comprehensive amount of very
high-quality MC, including in-depth reporting by
two authors with extensive knowledge and
experience in investigative journalism.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose of
the page, including of the publisher and/or
This is an article on a newspaper website that
authors for a news article
has won a variety of awards including the
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Pulitzer Prize and the GLAAD Media Award.
Article on a newspaper website
very high quality MC for the purpose of
the page
The article has a comprehensive amount of
● Very positive reputation (website)
very high quality MC that is unique and original,
including in-depth investigative reporting by two
authors with extensive knowledge and
experience in investigative journalism.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Highest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This page is on a well-known fact-checking and
debunking website that covers urban legends,
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Internet rumors, and other stories of unknown
very high quality MC
or questionable origin.
Fact-checking page on an
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
Internet rumor debunking website
of the page
The page has a very satisfying amount of
(YMYL)
● Positive reputation (website)
original MC for users seeking to validate a
claim about a documentary film about
mermaids. Users can trust the information on
this page due to the website's positive
reputation and high level of expertise in
debunking non-YMYL stories of this type.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
very high quality MC
This page has a very satisfying amount of MC
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
for users interested in ball gown wedding
of the page
dresses. An abundance of pictures, plus
Ball gown wedding dress page
● Positive reputation (website)
options to view by price range, style, etc., are
part of what makes this page so satisfying.
This page is on a very popular wedding
planning website.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
This page has a highly satisfying amount of
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Yosemite National Park
helpful information about Yosemite National
very high quality MC for the purpose of
information
Park, including traffic alerts and links to other
the page
parts of the website with additional information.
Since the page is on the official national park
website, it is uniquely authoritative.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
This page offers a satisfying amount of helpful
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Software tips
and very high quality MC for the purpose of the
high quality MC
page. Because the page is on the official
website of the company that produces the
software, it is highly authoritative.
From this Wikipedia article , we learn that
“Kernel.org is a main repository of source code
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
for the Linux kernel, the base of the popular
of the page
Linux operating system. It makes all versions
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
Linux Kernel archives
of the source code available to all users... The
high quality MC
main purpose of the site is to host a repository
for Linux kernel developers and maintainers of
Linux distributions.”
This website is the most authoritative source for
information about Linux.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Highest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
Users in the U.S. can obtain free credit reports
Credit report information website
of the page
on this website by providing their Social
(YMYL)
● Very positive reputation (website)
Security Number. This Wikipedia article tells us
that this website is “the only federally mandated
and authorized source for obtaining a free
credit report.”
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
The purpose of the page is to provide income
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
tax forms and publications. The website
Tax forms page (YMYL)
very high quality MC for the purpose of
represents an agency of the U.S. federal
the page
government that handles taxes, so the page
and forms are uniquely authoritative and
trustworthy.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
This article is on a magazine website that has
Article titled “Secret Fears of the
very high quality MC
won multiple National Magazine awards. The
Super-Rich”
● Very positive reputation (website)
article has a comprehensive amount of very
high quality and in-depth MC that is unique and
original.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
This magazine is very well-known and well
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
regarded for content about artists and bands,
Interview with musical artist
very high quality MC
and specifically has a positive reputation for
● Very positive reputation (website)
interviews with musicians. This article features
high quality and original content in its interview
with the artist.
The purpose of this page is to provide an online
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
BMI (Body Mass Index) calculator. The
of the page
calculator is functional and easy to use.
BMI calculator (YMYL)
● Very positive reputation (website)
The website represents an institute that is part
of the National Institutes of Health. It has an
extremely good reputation and is an expert in
medical topics.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Highest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
This is a meningitis reference page on a
Page about meningitis (YMYL)
● Very positive reputation (website)
trustworthy and authoritative website for a
nonprofit medical research group. This website
has a reputation of being one of the best web
resources for medical information.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
This is an influenza reference page on a
Page about seasonal flu (YMYL)
● Very positive reputation (website)
trustworthy and authoritative medical website.
This website has a reputation of being one of
the best web resources for medical information
of this type.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
According to this Wikipedia article , this hospital
Health information on a hospital
of the page
is “currently regarded as one of the top 4
page (YMYL)
hospitals in the United States as rated by U.S.
News & World Report .” Users can trust
medical information on this website.
The purpose of this page is to provide
information about, and allow users to buy, a
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
specific type of school backpack. The page
of the page
provides a lot of helpful product information, as
● Very positive reputation (website)
Backpack shopping page
well as 600 user reviews.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
(YMYL)
high quality MC
Since the store produces this backpack, they
are experts on the product, making the page on
their own website authoritative. In addition, this
store has a reputation for producing one of the
highest quality and most popular school
backpacks on the market.
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
for its purpose (login page)
● Positive reputation (website)
Online banking login page
This page has login functionality, as well as
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
(YMYL)
clear information about what the user is logging
of the page
into. This is a large, popular bank with a good
reputation.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
Homepage of a charity (YMYL)
● Very positive reputation (website)
This is a highly reputable charity according to
multiple charity rating organizations.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Highest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is an example of a “custom 404” page.
These pages are designed to alert users that
the URL they are trying to visit no longer exists.
The MC of this page is the cartoon, the caption,
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
and the search functionality, which is specific to
for its purpose (error page)
the content of the website. It is clear that time,
● Very positive reputation (website)
effort, and talent were involved in its creation.
“Custom 404” page
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
This publication has a very positive reputation
and is specifically known for its cartoons.
Keep in mind that for any type of page,
including pages with error messages, there
may be a range of highest quality to lowest
quality. Therefore, it’s important to evaluate the
page using the same criteria as all other pages,
regardless of what type of page it is.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
This PDF file is a detailed campus map of a
very high quality MC
major university, which is hosted on the official
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
Campus map
university website. This is a highly authoritative
of the page
source for this information. The map includes a
listing of the all the buildings, parking
structures, parking lots, construction areas, etc.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
The website is one of the most popular recipe
of the page
websites and the author of the recipe is a
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
well-known celebrity chef who specializes in
Pumpkin pie recipe
and features
southern cooking.
This page has a large number of user reviews
of the recipe, detailed preparation time
information, a “recipe box” feature, etc.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
Even though this user does not seem to be a
of the page
well-known professional chef, recipes are an
Chocolate chip cookie recipe on a
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
example of everyday expertise. The author of
recipe blog
and features
this blog has documented her extensive
experimentation with a chocolate chip cookie
recipe, and her expertise is demonstrated in the
large quantity of original high or highest quality
MC.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Highest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
very high quality MC
This is a high quality, professionally produced
The band OK Go’s music video
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
video on the band’s official channel. The music
for the song “This Too Shall Pass”
of the page
video represents unique and original content
created by a highly skilled and talented musical
artist.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
very high quality MC
This is a high quality, popular video. It won the
“Henri 2, Paw de Deux” video
● Very positive reputation for the content of
“Golden Kitty Award” for “Best Cat Video On
this particular video
The Internet” at the Walker Art Center's Internet
Cat Video Film Festival. The video is unique
and original content created with a high degree
of time and effort.
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
The MC of this video page is an episode of
very high quality MC
Saturday Night Live on the TV network’s official
Saturday Night Live video on the
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
website, making it highly authoritative and
TV network’s website
of the page
trustworthy. The episode represents high
quality and original content created by a TV
show that has won numerous awards. Below
the main video, there are many other videos
that users may be interested in.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
The purpose of the page is to answer questions
of the page
about the usage of abbreviations. This website
Q&A page on abbreviations
● Very positive reputation (website)
has a very good reputation as a reference for
information on writing, publishing, etc. It is
considered highly authoritative and trustworthy
for the topic of the page.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
The official Twitter profile page of
● A satisfying or comprehensive amount of
This is the official Twitter account for the
the Tennessee Republican Party
high quality MC
Tennessee Republican Party (TNGOP). It is an
(YMYL)
expert and authoritative source of information
about the Tennessee Republican Party.
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6.0
Low Quality Pages
Low quality pages may have been intended to serve a beneficial purpose. However, Low quality pages do not achieve
their purpose well because they are lacking in an important dimension, such as having an unsatisfying amount of MC, or
because the creator of the MC lacks expertise for the purpose of the page.
If a page has one or more of the following characteristics, the Low rating applies:
● An inadequate level of Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T).
● The quality of the MC is low.
● There is an unsatisfying amount of MC for the purpose of the page.
● The title of the MC is exaggerated or shocking.
● The Ads or SC distracts from the MC.
● There is an unsatisfying amount of website information or information about the creator of the MC for the purpose
of the page (no good reason for anonymity).
● A mildly negative reputation for a website or creator of the MC, based on extensive reputation research.
If a page has multiple Low quality attributes, a rating lower than Low may be appropriate.
6.1
Lacking Expertise, Authoritativeness, or Trustworthiness (E-A-T)
Low quality pages often lack an appropriate level of E-A-T for the purpose of the page. Here are some examples:
● The creator of the MC does not have adequate expertise in the topic of the MC, e.g. a tax form instruction video
made by someone with no clear expertise in tax preparation.
● The website is not an authoritative source for the topic of the page, e.g. tax information on a cooking website.
● The MC is not trustworthy, e.g. a shopping checkout page that has an insecure connection.
Note: Websites with user-generated content span the Page Quality rating spectrum. Please pay careful attention to
websites that allow users to publish content with little oversight, such as social networking pages, video sharing websites,
volunteer-created encyclopedias, article sharing websites, forums, etc. Depending on the topic, pages on these websites
may lack E-A-T.
Important: The Low rating should be used if the page lacks appropriate E-A-T for its purpose.
6.2
Low Quality Main Content
The quality of the MC is an important consideration for PQ rating. We will consider content to be Low quality if it is
created without adequate time, effort, expertise, or talent/skill. Pages with low quality MC do not achieve their purpose
well.
In addition, please examine the title on the page. The title of the page should describe the content.
Exaggerated or shocking titles can entice users to click on pages in search results. If pages do not live up to the
exaggerated or shocking title or images, the experience leaves users feeling surprised and confused. Here is an example
of a page with an exaggerated and shocking title: "Is the World about to End? Mysterious Sightings of 25ft Sea Serpents
Prompt Panic!" as the title for an article about the unidentified remains of one small dead fish on a beach. Pages with
exaggerated or shocking titles that do not describe the MC well should be rated Low.
Important: The Low rating should be used if the page has Low quality MC.
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6.3
Unsatisfying Amount of Main Content
Some Low quality pages are unsatisfying because they have a small amount of MC for the purpose of the page. For
example, imagine an encyclopedia article on a very broad topic such as World War II that has just a few paragraphs.
Important: The Low rating should be used if the page has an unsatisfying amount of MC for the purpose of the page.
6.4
Distracting Ads/SC
We expect Ads and SC to be visible. However, some Ads, SC, or interstitial pages (i.e., pages displayed before or after
the content you are expecting) make it difficult to use the MC. Pages with Ads, SC, or other features that distract from or
interrupt the use of the MC should be given a Low rating.
A single pop-over Ad or interstitial page with a clear and easy-to-use close button is not terribly distracting, though may
not be a great user experience. However, difficult-to-close Ads that follow page scrolls, or interstitial pages that require an
app download, can be truly distracting and make the MC difficult to use. You can see examples of interstitial pages here .
The content of the Ads, SC, or other features may be distracting as well: sexually suggestive images such as here ,
grotesque images such as here , and porn Ads on non-porn pages should be considered very distracting.
Finally, Ads and SC can be distracting if the titles or images of the Ads or SC are shocking or disturbing. Here is an
example of a page with shocking and exaggerated titles, images, and text in the Ads and SC.
Important: The Low rating should be used if the page has Ads, SC, or other features that interrupt or distract from using
the MC.
6.5
Mixed or Mildly Negative Reputation of the Website or Creator of the Main Content
Extensive reputation research is required for all PQ rating tasks unless you have previously researched the reputation of
the website. Many websites have little reputation information, unfortunately. Of the websites with reputation information,
most websites have a good reputation. Please exercise care when researching the reputation of businesses. Try to find
as many reviews and ratings as possible, and read the details of negative reviews and low ratings before inferring that the
business overall has a negative reputation. A few negative customer service reviews are typical for businesses such as
restaurants.
If the MC was not created by the website, research the reputation of the creator of the MC. While many ordinary people
do not have reputation information available on the Internet, you can find reputation information on well-known YouTubers,
journalists, authors, bloggers and vloggers, professionals such as lawyers and doctors, etc.
Pay attention when there is evidence of mixed or mildly negative—though not malicious or financially
fraudulent—reputation. The Low rating should be used if the website or the creator of the MC has a mildly negative
reputation.
Important: For a YMYL website, a mixed reputation is cause for a Low rating.
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6.6
Unsatisfying Amount of Information about the Website or Creator of the Main Content
We expect some form of website information for many or most websites. We expect clear information about who (e.g.,
what individual, company, business, foundation, etc.) created the MC, unless there is good reason for anonymity. A
long-standing Internet alias or username can also serve the same function as identifying the MC creator. However, the
amount of information needed about the website or creator of the MC depends on the purpose of the page. For personal
websites or non-YMYL forum discussions, an email address or social media link alone may be sufficient.
Stores and websites that process financial transactions require a high level of user trust. If a store or financial transaction
website has just an email address and physical address, it may be difficult to get help if there are issues with the
transaction. Likewise, many other types of YMYL websites also require a high degree of user trust.
Important: For YMYL pages and other pages that require a high level of user trust, an unsatisfying amount of any of the
following is a reason to give a page a Low quality rating: customer service information, contact information, information
about who is responsible for the website or information about who created the content. For other types of websites, use
your judgment.
6.7
Examples of Low Quality Pages
Type of Webpage/Content
Low Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
The writing of this article is unprofessional,
● Low quality MC
including many grammar and punctuation
Article about nuclear power
● Lacking E-A-T
errors. The MC also appears to have been
(YMYL)
paraphrased from a science article found on a
different source, but with factual inaccuracies
introduced throughout. The combination of low
quality MC and lack of E-A-T justify the
Lowest+ to Low rating.
The title of the article is misleading and does
not reflect the actual content of the page. The
MC does not explain how to get rid of toxins or
● Low quality MC
what the word "toxins" in the headline refers to.
Article titled "Getting Rid Of
● Misleading page title
Toxins After The Holiday Season"
● Lacking E-A-T
The content also has many problems: the
(YMYL)
writing quality is poor, and the article includes
meaningless statements such as "water
therapy is one of the easiest ways of beauty
regimen since it will give enough moisture on
the skin". The article fails to cite sources, and
there is no evidence of E-A-T.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Low Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Low quality MC
This page and website have many of
● Disruptive Ads
characteristics of Low quality pages. Close
40th birthday party food ideas
observation shows MC that contains mostly
commonly known information and poor quality
writing. The MC is broken up by large Ads that
disrupt the user experience.
● Unsatisfying amount of MC for the
purpose of the page
Some websites rely on users to create virtually
Q&A unanswered question
all of their MC. In this case, the MC is the
user’s question. If there are no answers, the
amount of MC on the page is unsatisfying.
● Low or Lowest quality MC
This content has many problems:
Article with tips for dressing for
● Lacking E-A-T
inaccurate/meaningless information and
the office
complete lack of editing with poor spelling and
grammar—both of these characteristics in
combination justify the Lowest+ to Low rating.
● Low or Lowest quality MC
This content has many problems: garbled
Using ginger for your health
● Lacking E-A-T
information and a lack of editing. Both of these
(YMYL)
characteristics in combination justify the
Lowest+ to Low rating. In addition, lacking
E-A-T on this topic is concerning.
This is a YMYL topic. However, the steps listed
here are merely commonly-known information
that would be of little benefit to someone
interested in adopting a child from Iraq.
● Low quality MC: commonly known
information only
For example, step 1 says “Choose an adoption
How to adopt children from Iraq
● Lacking E-A-T on a YMYL topic
agency” and suggests looking in a phone book.
(YMYL)
There is almost no information specific to Iraq.
There is no evidence of expertise on adoption
from the description about the author.
Note that some Ads have the same format as
links to other articles on this website, potentially
making it a bit harder for users to visually
distinguish these Ads from the MC and SC.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Low Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
Page with advice on picking a
● Lacking E-A-T on a YMYL topic
There is no evidence that the author has
quality stock for investment
financial expertise. Because this is a YMYL
(YMYL)
financial article, lacking expertise is a reason
for a Low rating.
● Lacking E-A-T on a YMYL topic
There is no evidence that the author has
Page with information about how
medical expertise. Because this is a YMYL
long the flu lasts (YMYL)
medical article, lacking expertise is a reason for
a Low rating.
This page and website have many of
characteristics of Low quality pages. The MC is
low quality and lacks important information. For
example, it gives no indication of how to make
● Low quality and unsatisfying amount of
a crust and doesn’t list premade crust as an
MC
ingredient. It would be very difficult to actually
Apple pie recipe
make an apple pie using this recipe.
This page is lacking the kind of helpful content
we expect in recipe pages, such as user
reviews or comments. Without such
information, it’s hard to tell if the recipe is any
good. The small pink text at the top is not
helpful for users.
● Very distracting SC or Ads (not clear) in
This is an example of distracting and disruptive
the right column
Gluten-free New York cheesecake
Ads/SC: there are large Ads in the main column
● Disruptive Ads in the middle column
recipe
pushing down the MC as well as highly
distracting content on the right that are labeled
“Top Posts & Pages.” It is unclear whether
these are SC or Ads.
There are 94 answers to this question with a
● Lacking E-A-T
Page about Native American
few results that seem helpful. Many of the
customs (YMYL)
posts appear to be deliberately incorrect or
misleading, including the top answer, which is
labeled the “best answer.”
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Type of Webpage/Content
Low Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
Please read the MC (areas with red boxes
around it), including the completely unhelpful
"answer." This answer is so unhelpful, we can
consider this question to be unanswered. This
● Misleading Ads
● Unsatisfying amount of MC for the
page has an unsatisfying amount of MC.
Page about a 2002 Volvo part
purpose of the page
(YMYL)
In addition to a very unhelpful “answer,” the
page design makes it difficult to distinguish the
MC from Ads. For example, below the answer,
we see a "sponsored answer," which has the
same format as the real answer, but is actually
an Ad and not an answer to the question—this
is misleading to users.
This is a page from a Q&A site with an
unanswered question. Q&A pages exist to
answer user questions. Pages with
unanswered questions should generally be
● Misleading Ads/SC
rated Low because they have little MC (just a
● Unsatisfying amount of MC for the
question and no answer) and don’t achieve
Page about water and soil
purpose of the page
their purpose well.
In addition to having no answer, this page has
Ads and links to other questions (misleadingly
labeled as “Relevant answers”) displayed
prominently, which users may mistake for
answers to the question. It takes a moment to
notice that this page actually has no answer.
7.0
Lowest Quality Pages
This section describes Lowest quality pages. The examples at the end of this section are critical for understanding these
concepts, so please review them carefully. As a reminder, here are the steps for doing PQ rating.
1. Understand the true purpose of the page. Websites and pages should be created for users in order to serve a
beneficial purpose, in other words, they should exist to help users.
2. Websites or pages without a beneficial purpose, including pages that are created with no attempt to help users, or
pages that potentially spread hate, cause harm, or misinform or deceive users, should receive the Lowest rating.
E-A-T and other page quality characteristics do not play a role for these pages. For example, any page
attempting to scam users should receive the Lowest rating, whether the scam is created by an expert or not.
3. Otherwise, the PQ rating is based on how well the page achieves its purpose using the criteria outlined in these
guidelines. Pages that fail to achieve their purpose should receive the Lowest rating.
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Here is a summary of what different types of Lowest pages look like:
Type of Lowest Page
What Pages Look Like
Pages that potentially
● Promote hate or violence towards a group of people
spread hate
Potentially harmful pages
● Encourage harm to self or others
● Malicious pages, e.g., scams, phishing, malware downloads
● Extremely negative or malicious reputation
Pages that potentially
● Demonstrably inaccurate content
misinform users
● YMYL content that contradicts well-established expert consensus
● Debunked or unsubstantiated conspiracy theories
Pages that potentially
● Deceptive intent, e.g., websites created to deceive users
deceive users
● Deceptive design, e.g., Ads that are disguised as MC
Lack of purpose pages
● No MC
● Gibberish MC
● Cannot determine a purpose
Pages that fail to achieve
● Lowest E-A-T
their purpose
● No/little MC or lowest quality MC
● Copied MC or auto-generated MC
● Obstructed or inaccessible MC
● Inadequate information about the website or creator of the MC
● Unmaintained websites, and hacked, defaced, or spammed pages
7.1
Lack of Purpose Pages
Sometimes it is impossible to figure out the purpose of the page. For example, some pages are either accidentally or
deliberately created with no MC or gibberish and/or meaningless MC. Some pages fail to achieve their purpose so
profoundly that the purpose of the page cannot be determined. Such pages serve no real purpose for users.
No matter how or why they are created, lack of purpose pages should be rated Lowest quality.
7.2
Pages that Fail to Achieve Their Purpose
7.2.1 Lowest E-A-T
One of the most important criteria of PQ rating is E-A-T. Expertise of the creator of the MC, and authoritativeness or
trustworthiness of the page or website, is extremely important for a page to achieve its purpose well.
If the E-A-T of a page is low enough, users cannot or should not use the MC of the page. This is especially true of YMYL
topics. If the page is highly inexpert, unauthoritative or untrustworthy, it fails to achieve its purpose.
Important: The Lowest rating should be used if the page is highly inexpert, unauthoritative, or untrustworthy.
7.2.2 No/Little Main Content
Pages exist to share their MC with users. The following pages should be rated Lowest because they fail to achieve their
purpose:
● Pages with no MC.
● Pages with a bare minimum of MC that is unhelpful for the purpose of the page.
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7.2.3 Lowest Quality Main Content
The Lowest rating applies to any page with Lowest Quality MC. Lowest quality MC is content created with such
insufficient time, effort, expertise, talent, and/or skill that it fails to achieve its purpose. The Lowest rating should also
apply to pages where users cannot benefit from the MC, for example:
● Informational pages with demonstrably inaccurate MC.
● The MC is so difficult to read, watch, or use, that it takes great effort to understand and use the page.
● Broken functionality of the page due to lack of skill in construction, poor design, or lack of maintenance.
Have high standards and think about how typical users in your locale would experience the MC on the page. A page may
have value to the creator or participants in the discussion, but few to no general users who view it would benefit from the
MC.
7.2.4 Copied Main Content
One way to create MC with little to no time, effort, or expertise is to copy it from another source.
The word “copied” refers to the practice of “scraping” content, or copying content from other non-affiliated websites without
adding any original content or value to users (see here for more information on copied or scraped content).
Important: We do not consider legitimately licensed or syndicated content to be “copied” (see here for more on web
syndication). Examples of syndicated content in the U.S. include news articles by AP or Reuters.
The Lowest rating is appropriate if all or almost all of the MC on the page is copied with little or no time, effort, expertise,
manual curation, or added value for users. Such pages should be rated Lowest, even if the page assigns credit for the
content to another source.
All of the following are considered copied content:
Content copied exactly from an identifiable source. Sometimes an entire page is copied, and sometimes just
parts of the page are copied. Sometimes multiple pages are copied and then pasted together into a single page.
Text that has been copied exactly is usually the easiest type of copied content to identify.
Content that is copied, but changed slightly from the original. This type of copying makes it difficult to find
the exact matching original source. Sometimes just a few words are changed, or whole sentences are changed,
or a “find and replace” modification is made, where one word is replaced with another throughout the text. These
types of changes are deliberately done to make it difficult to find the original source of the content. We call this
kind of content “copied with minimal alteration.”
Content copied from a changing source, such as a search results page or news feed. You often will not be
able to find an exact matching original source if it is a copy of “dynamic” content (content that changes frequently).
However, we will still consider this to be copied content.
Important: The Lowest rating is appropriate if all or almost all of the MC on the page is copied with little or no time, effort,
expertise, manual curation, or added value for users. Such pages should be rated Lowest, even if the page assigns
credit for the content to another source.
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7.2.5 How to Determine if Content is Copied
How do you determine whether all or most of the MC is copied? How do you identify the original source of the content?
These things can be difficult to determine, but the following steps may help.
1. Copy a sentence or phrase in the text. It may be necessary to try a few sentences or phrases from the page just
to be sure. When deciding what sentence or phrase to copy, try to find a sentence or series of several words
without punctuation, unusual characters, or suspicious words that may have replaced the original text.
2. Search on Google by pasting the sentence or phrase (surrounded by quotation marks) inside the Google search
box. Try a few sentences from the page.
Here are some sentences and phrases from this page about “The Wizard of Oz” film and how to search for
them.
Sentence or Phrase From a Sentence
Query to Find the Sentence or Phrase
Try the query both with and without quotation marks around
A sentence on the page:
the sentence:
[ “All are convinced by Dorothy that the Wizard can help
All are convinced by Dorothy that the Wizard can help them
them too” ]
too
[ All are convinced by Dorothy that the Wizard can help
them too ]
Try the query both with and without quotation marks around
A phrase on the page:
the sentence:
[ “Dorothy uses the Golden Cap to summon the Winged
Dorothy uses the Golden Cap to summon the Winged
Monkeys” ]
Monkeys
[ Dorothy uses the Golden Cap to summon the Winged
Monkeys ]
Try the query both with and without quotation marks around
A different phrase on the page:
the sentence:
[ “revealing an old man who had journeyed to Oz from
revealing an old man who had journeyed to Oz from Omaha
Omaha long ago in a hot air balloon” ]
long ago in a hot air balloon
[revealing an old man who had journeyed to Oz from
Omaha long ago in a hot air balloon ]
3.
Compare the pages you find that match the sentence or phrase. Is most of their MC the same? If so, does one
clearly come from a highly authoritative source that is known for original content creation (newspaper, magazine,
medical foundation, etc.)? Does one source seem to reasonably be the original? Does one source appear to
have the earliest publication date, verified by sources like the Wayback Machine?
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Use your best judgment. Sometimes it is clear that the content is copied from somewhere, but you cannot tell what the
original source is. Other times the content found on the original source has changed enough that searches for sentences
or phrases may no longer match the original source. For example, Wikipedia articles can change dramatically over time.
Text copied from old copies may not match the current content. If you strongly suspect the page you are evaluating is not
the original source, consider it likely to be copied.
We have confirmed that the above text (the text in the sentence and phrases in the table) comes from an older version of
a Wikipedia article about “The Wizard of Oz,” which can be found using the Internet Archive Wayback Machine . Please
note that searching for the above sentence and phrases will not lead you to a current Wikipedia article about “The Wizard
of Oz,” which demonstrates how confirming that the MC of a page contains copied content can sometimes be difficult.
Important: The Lowest rating is appropriate if all or almost all of the MC on the page is copied with little or no time, effort,
expertise, manual curation, or added value for users. Such pages should be rated Lowest, even if the page assigns
credit for the content to another source.
7.2.6 Auto-Generated Main Content
Another way to create MC with little to no time, effort, or expertise is to create pages (or even entire websites) by
designing a basic template from which hundreds or thousands of pages are created, sometimes using content from freely
available sources (such as an RSS feed or API). These pages are created with no or very little time, effort, or expertise,
and also have no editing or manual curation.
Pages and websites made up of auto-generated content with no editing or manual curation, and no original content or
value added for users, should be rated Lowest.
7.2.7 Obstructed or Inaccessible Main Content
MC cannot be used if it is obstructed or inaccessible due to Ads, SC, or interstitial pages . If you are not able to access the
MC, please use the Lowest rating.
Here are some examples of pages with obstructed MC that should be rated Lowest:
● Ads that continue to cover the MC as you scroll down the page, that are virtually impossible to close without
clicking on the Ad.
● An interstitial page that redirects the user away from the MC without offering any path back to the MC.
7.2.8 Inadequate Information about the Website or Creator of the Main Content
As discussed in Section 2.5.3, we expect most websites to have some information about who (e.g., what individual,
company, business, foundation, etc.) is responsible for the website and who created the MC, as well as some contact
information, unless there is a good reason for anonymity. For websites with YMYL pages, such as online banks, we
expect to find a lot of information about the site, including extensive customer service information.
Think about the purpose of the website and the type of website information users would expect or demand.
YMYL pages with absolutely no information about the website or creator of the MC, or other pages where the available
information is completely inadequate for the purpose of the website (e.g., an online bank with only an email address),
should be rated Lowest.
7.2.9 Unmaintained Websites, and Hacked, Defaced, or Spammed Pages
Some websites are not maintained or cared for at all by their webmaster. These “abandoned” websites will fail to achieve
their purpose over time, as content becomes stale or website functionality ceases to work on new browser versions.
Unmaintained websites should be rated Lowest if they fail to achieve their purpose due to the lack of maintenance.
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Unmaintained websites may also become hacked, defaced, or spammed with a large amount of distracting and unhelpful
content. These pages should also be rated Lowest because they fail to accomplish their original purpose.
For reference, a hacked or defaced website is a site that has been modified without permission from the website owner(s).
Responsible webmasters should regularly check their websites for suspicious behavior and take steps to protect users.
We’ll consider a comment or forum discussion to be “spammed” if there are posts with unrelated comments that are not
intended to help other users, but rather to advertise a product or create a link to a website. Frequently these comments
are posted by a “bot” rather than a real person. While a specific page on a website may have a large amount of spammed
forum discussions or spammed user comments, it does not mean that the entire website contains only spam.
7.3
Pages that Potentially Spread Hate
Use the Lowest rating for pages that promote hate or violence against a group of people, including but not limited to those
grouped on the basis of race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, age, nationality, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender
or gender identity. Websites advocating hate or violence can cause real world harm.
Hate may be expressed in inflammatory, emotional, or hateful-sounding language, but may also be expressed in polite or
even academic-sounding language.
Extensive reputation research is important for identifying websites that promote hate or violence. Please identify
reputable and well-established organizations that provide information about hate groups in your locale when researching
reputation. Some websites may not have reputation information available. In this case, please use your judgment based
on the MC of the page and knowledge of your locale.
7.4
Potentially Harmful Pages
7.4.1 Encourage Harm
Use the Lowest rating for pages that encourage or incite harm. Harm includes mental, physical, or emotional harm to self
or others. For example:
● User discussions that attempt to justify sexual abuse of children.
● How-to or step-by-step information on how to commit acts of terrorism or violent extremism.
● Depictions of extreme gore or violence, without a beneficial purpose.
● Suicide promotion or pro-anorexia webpages that encourage users to engage in behavior that can result in
hospitalization or death.
● Pages with scary death threats or other realistic-sounding threatening language.
7.4.2 Malicious Pages
Malicious pages are created with harmful intent or created to benefit the website or other organization at the cost of the
user. Use the Lowest rating for any harmful or malicious page, including the following:
● Pages or websites that you strongly suspect are scams (see these links for more information about Internet
scams: Avoid Scams 1, Avoid Scams 2, Internet Fraud).
● Pages that ask for personal information without a legitimate reason (for example, pages that ask for name,
birthdate, address, bank account, government ID number, etc.).
● Pages that “phish” for passwords to Facebook, Gmail, or other popular online services. See here for information
about “phishing” fraud.
● Pages with suspicious links, including malware download links or other types of links that are detrimental to users.
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If you suspect a link is malicious, please do not click on it. You do not need to personally experience a malicious
download in order to confirm that a website is harmful. Likewise, if you feel strongly that a website is a scam, you do not
need to engage with it to get proof.
Use the Lowest rating if you suspect a page is malicious, even if you’re not able to completely confirm that the page is
harmful. Please exercise caution and practice good Internet safety skills.
7.4.3 Negative or Malicious Reputation
Use the Lowest rating if the website and the creators of the MC have a negative or malicious reputation. Here are some
examples originally shown in Section 2.6.4. All pages on these websites should be rated Lowest because of the negative
or malicious reputation of these websites.
Website
Description
Negative reputation information: This business has a BBB rating of F. There is a news article
about financial fraud. There are many reviews on websites describing how users sent money and
did not receive anything in return.
Negative/malicious reputation information: This website engaged in criminal behavior such as
physically threatening users.
Negative reputation information: There are many detailed negative articles on news sites and
charity watchdog sites describing fraud and financial mishandling about this organization.
7.5
Pages that Potentially Misinform Users
The purpose of an informational page is to communicate accurate information. Assume an informational purpose for
pages that look as though they are informational or pages that many users go to for information, even if it is not an official
news source or an official encyclopedia article. This includes pages that appear to be news, social profile pages
spreading news or information, forum discussions about informational topics such as current events, videos which cover
news topics, etc.
The Lowest rating must be used for any of the following types of content on pages that could appear to be informational:
● Demonstrably inaccurate content.
● YMYL content that contradicts well-established expert consensus.
● Debunked or unsubstantiated conspiracy theories.
Lowest should also be used under these circumstances:
● The content creator may believe that the conspiracy theory or demonstrably inaccurate content is correct, or it is
unclear whether they do.
● The content creators may be deliberately attempting to misinform users.
● The content creators describe, repeat or spread conspiracy theories or demonstrably inaccurate content without a
clear effort to debunk or correct it, regardless of whether the creators believe it to be true. For example, content
creators may produce this content in order to make money or gain attention.
Some examples of information that would be found on Lowest quality pages include: the moon landings were faked,
carrots cure cancer, and the U.S. government is controlled by lizard people. While some of these topics may seem funny,
there have been real world consequences from people believing these kinds of internet conspiracy theories and
misinformation.
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Find high quality, trustworthy sources to check accuracy and the consensus of experts if you are unsure about a topic. Be
especially careful with YMYL topics such as medical, scientific, financial, historical, or current events that are necessary
for maintaining an informed citizenry.
Please research conspiracy theories. Fact-checking websites cannot keep up with the volume of conspiracy theories
produced by the Internet. Some conspiracy theories are impossible to debunk because they claim all debunking
information is inaccurate. If a claim or conspiracy theory seems wildly improbable and cannot be verified by independent
trustworthy sources, consider it unsubstantiated.
7.6
Pages that Potentially Deceive Users
We will consider a page to be “deceptive” if it may deceive users or trick search engines. All deceptive pages should be
rated Lowest.
The following sections describe characteristics of deceptive pages. However, no list of deceptive characteristics will be
complete—deceptive websites continue to evolve as users and search engines figure out how they are being tricked.
With practice, you will be able to identify deceptive pages accurately.
7.6.1 Deceptive Page Purpose
Some pages are deliberately created to deceive users, for example:
● A webpage or website that impersonates a different site (e.g., copied logo or branding of an unaffiliated site, URL
that mimics another site's name, etc.).
● A non-satirical social network profile made by an impersonator.
● A webpage or website that looks like a news source or information page, but in fact has articles to manipulate
users in order to benefit a person, business, government, or other organization politically, monetarily, or otherwise.
● A webpage claims to offer an independent review or share other information about a product, but is in fact created
to make money for the owner of the website without attempting to help users. For example, the MC may contain
intentionally misleading or inaccurate information created with the sole purpose of getting users to click on
monetized links or buy the product.
● A website claims to be the personal website of a celebrity, but the website is actually created to make money for
the owner of the website without the permission of the celebrity. For example, the page may have false
testimonials for a product and is created for the sole purpose of getting users to click on monetized links or buy
the product.
● A webpage with a misleading title or a title that has nothing to do with the content on the page. Users who come
to the page expecting content related to the title will feel tricked or deceived.
● A webpage or website with deceptive website information. For example, the website may misrepresent who owns
the site, what the website purpose really is, how the content was created, how to contact the site, etc.
Any page or website that may deceive or trick users should be rated Lowest, regardless of intent. Use the Lowest rating
even if you cannot see a reason for the deception or even if you think most users wouldn’t “fall” for the trick.
You should also use the Lowest rating if you suspect a page is deceptive, even if you’re not able to completely confirm it.
Please exercise caution and practice good Internet safety skills since deceptive pages may be malicious.
7.6.2 Deceptive Page Design
Some pages are deliberately designed to manipulate users to take an action that will benefit the owner of the website
rather than help the user.
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Here are some common types of deceptively designed pages:
Pages that disguise Ads as MC. Actual MC may be minimal or created to encourage users to click on the Ads.
For example, fake search pages (example ) that have a list of links that look like a page of search results. If you
click on a few of the links, you will see that the page is just a collection of Ads disguised as search engine results.
A “search box” is present, but submitting a new query just gives you a different page of Ads disguised as search
results.
Pages that disguise Ads as website navigation links. For example, fake directory pages (example ) that look
like a personally curated set of helpful links, possibly with unique descriptions. In reality, the links are Ads or links
to other similar pages on the site. Sometimes the descriptions of the links are unrelated to the page.
Pages where the MC is not usable or visible. For example, a page that has such a large amount of Ads at the
top of the page (before the MC), so that most users will not see the MC, or a page where the MC is invisible text.
Any page designed to trick users into clicking on links, which may be Ads or other links intended to serve the
needs of the website rather than to the benefit of the user.
Take a good look at the page and use your judgment. If you believe the page was deliberately created to manipulate
users to click on Ads, monetized links, questionable download links, etc., rather than help users, the page should be rated
Lowest.
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7.7
Examples of Lowest Quality Pages
Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This page is deceptively designed to make
users believe they are on the official ABC News
website. The official ABC logo is copied and
used prominently throughout the page, and the
● Harmful purpose
URL of this website (http://abcnews.com.co/) is
● Deceptive design: impersonates a
very similar to the official site's URL
different website
(YMYL)
● Lowest quality MC: demonstrably
inaccurate content
The articles on this website include
demonstrably inaccurate content, such as an
inaccurate news report that Obama banned the
The deceptive website design and inaccurate
content can misinform users. This website was
created with a harmful purpose.
The MC on this page contains factually
unsupported theories related to the Vatican's
knowledge of the planet Nibiru, the existence of
● Presents unsubstantiated conspiracy
aliens, and upcoming world events. Although
theories as if the information were factual
various Vatican officials and scientists are
● Lowest quality MC: unsubstantiated
quoted in the article, the quotations do not
conspiracy theory
support the article's claims, and in some cases
do not seem to come from the person quoted.
The Nibiru cataclysm and related events have
also been thoroughly debunked by authoritative
sources (Reference 1, Reference 2). The
demonstrably inaccurate content on this page
can misinform users.
This video describes the unsubstantiated and
● Presents unsubstantiated conspiracy
outlandish conspiracy theory that shape-shifting
theories as if the information were factual
lizard people interbred with humans and are
● Lowest quality MC: unsubstantiated
now running the world via government,
conspiracy theory
monetary, and religious organizations.
The video has high production quality, and
some viewers may find it funny or entertaining.
However, the video could appear to be
informational and should be rated Lowest.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Promotes hate or violence towards a
The Stormfront website promotes white
group of people
supremacist ideology and is considered to be a
homepage (YMYL)
hate site/group by many organizations and
articles, including: Anti-Defamation League ,
Fox News article, USA Today article, Pew
● Deceptive purpose: non-satirical page
This Twitter profile page (username TEN_GOP)
made by an impersonator
was created to impersonate the Tennessee
Republican Party (username TNGOP). For
more information, see this article: Fake
At the time this example was written, Betty
White was alive. This profile page on a social
media website leads users to believe she is
● Harmful purpose
dead. Comments on the page indicate that
● Lowest quality MC: demonstrably
some users have realized that it is inaccurate.
inaccurate content
If the page were truly created in error, these
comments should have led the creator to
realize the mistake and delete the page.
While it is not clear why this type of page was
created in the first place, it appears to be a
deliberate intent to misinform users, which is a
harmful purpose.
This news article is demonstrably inaccurate.
● Harmful purpose
The event described here (the death of Miley
● Deceptive page design
Cyrus) did not happen. Note that no date is
● Lowest quality MC: demonstrably
given, no sources are cited, and there is no
inaccurate content
author. This website is designed to look like a
● An unsatisfying amount of information
news source, but there is no information on the
about the website and author
news organization that created the website or
its content. The SC also features distracting
pictures and outrageously titled links.
This page was created to misinform users,
which is a harmful purpose.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is an example of a spammed forum page,
where the goal is to try and get users to watch
● Lowest quality MC: large amount of
a movie online, which has nothing to do with
“Keyword Stuffed” MC
the purpose of the site. For a forum page, the
user comments are the MC, and much of the
content is not helpful for users. Here is an
example of some of the “keyword stuffing” on
this page that is not meant to be read by a
human, found near the bottom of the page.
● Lowest quality MC: copied content with
All MC is a copy of an old Wikipedia article,
little or no time, effort, expertise, manual
which you can see here by researching it on
curation, or added value for users
● No evidence of E-A-T
The current Wikipedia page offers much more
content, links, references, etc. This page
doesn’t add much value for users.
● An unsatisfying amount of MC for the
topic of the page
This page has so many low quality
● Very low quality MC
characteristics that the Lowest+ rating is
● No evidence of E-A-T
appropriate. There is a question about what
● True purpose of the page and website is
the true purpose of the page is—Lowest is
questionable
appropriate if you feel this page was created
with little attempt to help users.
● Malicious, harmful, or deceptive
This is a shopping checkout page, but it asks
information (YMYL)
for the user’s government ID number, driver’s
license number, ATM pin number, bank account
information, etc.
The first sentence is incomplete, and doesn’t
● Auto-generated MC, created with little to
provide an explanation for the code, and
no time, effort, expertise, manual
therefore fails the purpose of the page. Other
curation, or added value for users
Code (YMYL)
pages on the website have inaccurate,
● No evidence of E-A-T
misleading, and/or incomplete information. In
fact, some pages seem borderline gibberish,
with contradicting information. It appears the
page exists only to make money, with no
attempt to help users.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Extremely negative or malicious
There are many claims of fraud and financial
(YMYL)
reputation
problems about this organization on reputable
news sites and charity watchdog sites:
Negative review 1, Negative review 2, Negative
There is no information about who created this
website, no contact information, and no
● No website information for YMYL website
authorship information.
● No evidence of E-A-T
Medical pages require a high degree of user
trust. Because there is no information about
who owns this website and who created this
content, we will consider this an untrustworthy
website.
● Deceptive purpose (fake directory page)
● No website information for YMYL topic
The links on the page appear to link to helpful
Mesothelioma (YMYL)
● No evidence of E-A-T
articles, but in fact the links are Ads that do not
go to articles. This is a YMYL topic, but there is
no indication about who is responsible for this
content or website.
● Deceptive purpose (fake search page)
Advertising should never disguise itself as the
MC of the page. Pages with Ads that are
designed to look like MC should be considered
deceptive.
● Deceptive purpose (fake search page)
This page was created to make money from
clicks on Ads rather than to help users.
This looks like an information website for a
● Lowest quality MC (copied content with
drug. The real purpose of this page is to get
little or no time, effort, expertise, manual
users to this website, and then get them to click
curation, or added value for users)
Viagra (YMYL)
on the “order now” link, which takes users to
● No website information for YMYL website
another website.
● No evidence of E-A-T
All MC on this page is copied with little or no
time, effort, expertise, manual curation, or
added value for users. Here is the original
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Purpose of the page to make money with
very little or no attempt to help users
This page is titled “Washing Machine Reviews,”
● Lowest quality MC (copied content with
but there are no reviews on the page and the
reviews (YMYL)
little or no time, effort, expertise, manual
content is copied from another website. The
curation, or added value for users)
links all go to a single Internet retailer selling
washing machines. This is a deceptive page
because it is designed to get users to click on
the prominent links.
This page contains a fake survey, which
appears to promise users the opportunity to win
an Apple MacBook Air, an iPhone 5c, or a
Galaxy S4. However, after completing some
survey questions and selecting the product the
user would like to win, the user is redirected to
● Deceptive purpose
website after website to complete more and
● Highly untrustworthy
more survey questions, while being asked to
supply more and more personal information,
including medical information and bank account
information.
There is no information about who is
responsible, even though this website asks for
highly personal information such as bank
account numbers. Despite appearances, there
is no affiliation with Google.
● Deceptive or misleading page design
Some users might not even notice the MC
because it is under a long list of Ads. Users
may mistake the Ads for MC.
The title of this page is “Rachael Ray Diet
Blog,” but the page has nothing to do with
Rachael Ray or her diet or her products. This
page exists to sell products using Rachael
Ray’s name and image. In fact, there is a
● Deceptive purpose and deceptive content
brown-text-on-brown-background section at the
bottom of the page (which we consider to be
hidden text) that says “Disclaimer: Rachael Ray
is not affiliated with nor does she sponsor or
endorse this blog.” This page is deceptive in
spite of the disclaimer!
This example has been annotated with red text
at the top to point out deceptive aspects of this
page.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Lacking in purpose
● Lowest quality MC (gibberish, keyword
stuffing)
This page has no helpful MC and no helpful
purpose.
● Very negative, malicious,
This website took users’ money and physically
or financially fraudulent reputation
threatened users who complained. These
eyewear (YMYL)
articles on Wikipedia and the New York Times
describe the deceptive techniques used by this
website and provide other negative information
about the website and its owner.
● Lacking in purpose
● Lowest quality MC (gibberish)
This page has no helpful MC and no helpful
purpose.
● Lowest quality MC (gibberish)
● Lack of purpose
This is a gibberish PDF file. We don’t have any
idea why this was created. There are no links
or Ads. This page has no purpose and no
reason to exist.
● Lowest quality MC (gibberish)
● Highly untrustworthy
This page has deceptive features, such as a
friend request, a prize alert, and a download
button.
● Lacking in purpose
● Lowest quality MC (gibberish, keyword
stuffing)
This page has no MC and no helpful purpose.
● No evidence of E-A-T
● Inaccurate or misleading
This content is poorly written and uses a lot of
stomach flu (YMYL)
● No website information for YMYL topic
words to say very little. There is no information
about who is responsible for the content and no
contact information for this YMYL medical topic.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is a download website with only one page
- this page. There is a lot of text (with grammar
and spelling errors) promising that users will
● Highly untrustworthy (suspect download)
make money from this free download. The
purpose of the page seems to be to entice
users into clicking on the links with the promise
of making money.
Remember that you are not required to click on
any links that are suspicious.
This is an example of a page with no MC. You
● Large amount of prominent Ads and no
might think that the MC is “missing” due to a
attempt to help users
problem with this particular page, but in fact,
this website has hundreds of pages that look
the same way—no MC, just Ads. This website
shows Ads with little or no attempt to help
users, and should be rated Lowest quality.
This content has many problems: poor
● Lowest quality MC
grammar, and sentences that are meaningless
● No evidence of E-A-T
or state something obvious. For example:
"Popping pimples could be or could be not the
new trend of getting rid of them." In addition,
the “About the Author” section of the page has
an Ad, but no information about the author.
● Lowest quality MC
The level of expertise of the author of this
● No evidence of E-A-T
(YMYL)
content is not clearly communicated. Providing
this background information is particularly
important for medical, financial, or other YMYL
topics for which expertise is needed.
● YMYL page with inaccurate potentially
We must evaluate this page from the point of
dangerous medical advice
view of a user visiting this page from a search
● Lowest quality MC
engine, rather than a participant. The question
is poorly worded and difficult to understand.
The answers are poorly worded and have
incorrect and potentially dangerous medical
advice. The MC is low quality.
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Type of Webpage/Content
Lowest Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● YMYL page with potentially damaging
financial advice
This page gives loan advice that can be
● No evidence of E-A-T
(YMYL)
potentially damaging, for example, instructing
● Inaccurate or misleading
people not to pay back their loans. The article
has grammar and spelling errors, and the page
is highly untrustworthy.
This page is selling Nike Air Jordan shoes.
When you look at the “Contact Us” page , it
does not give the name of a company or a
● Completely inadequate or untrustworthy
physical address, which also cannot be found
customer service information for a
anywhere else on the website. This amount of
shopping website
contact information is not sufficient for a
contact info (YMYL)
● No evidence of E-A-T
shopping website.
● Inaccurate or misleading
In addition, the “Shipping and Returns” page
has the name of another company that seems
to be unrelated. There are also official looking
logos at the bottom of the homepage, including
the Better Business Bureau logo and Google
Checkout logo, that don’t appear to be
affiliated with the website.
8.0
Medium Quality Pages
In this section, we will describe pages that should get the Medium quality rating. Medium pages have a beneficial
purpose and achieve their purpose.
There are two types of Medium quality pages:
Type of Medium Page
Discussion
Nothing wrong, but nothing
The page achieves its purpose, however, it does not merit a High quality rating, nor is there
special
anything to indicate that a Low quality rating is appropriate.
Mixed with strong High quality
The page or website has strong High quality rating characteristics, but also has mild Low quality
rating characteristics
characteristics. The strong High quality aspects make it difficult to rate the page Low.
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8.1
Examples of Medium Quality Pages
Webpage/Type of Content
Medium Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
Wikipedia article about baroque
This is a short Wikipedia article about baroque
pearls
pearls, a fairly narrow topic. This page is OK
for its purpose, but it doesn’t display
characteristics associated with a High rating.
Page from a humorous site
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
This page is from a humorous site that
encourages users to post photos with mouths
drawn on them. This page is OK for its
purpose, but it doesn’t display characteristics
associated with a High rating.
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
Article about “Keeping Up with the
This page is on a website dedicated to
Kardashians” show
entertainment news. This page is OK for its
purpose, but it doesn’t display characteristics
associated with a High rating.
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
This page is from a news/entertainment
Article about Miley Cyrus
website. This page is OK for its purpose, but it
doesn’t display characteristics associated with
a High rating.
Q&A page where a user is looking
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
This Q&A page has a discussion of different
for advice on where to buy high
online merchants. There is some everyday
quality women's clothing online
expertise, but it doesn’t display characteristics
associated with a High rating.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Medium Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is an example of a “custom 404” page.
These pages are designed to alert users that
the URL they are trying to visit no longer exists.
Some websites do a nice job of not only alerting
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
users about a problem, but also giving them
“Custom 404” page
help.
This page is on a well-known merchant website
with a good reputation. However, this particular
page displays the bare minimum of content
needed to explain the problem to users, and
the only help offered is a link to the homepage.
● Mixed, but has some E-A-T
● Website has a good reputation
Although this is a well-known, highly-respected
Page about propulsion on the
● Content is likely to be accurate and
university with a high quality site, this page is
“Quality Reasoning Group”
trustworthy because of the website,
on a very specialized section of the university
section of a university’s website
though no reference links are provided
website. No author is listed and the page may
have been a one-time project, possibly from a
student, which is no longer maintained.
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
Song lyrics for the song “Never
There are many lyrics websites that have
You/Fear Love”
similar content. This page is OK for its
purpose, but it doesn’t display characteristics
associated with a High rating.
This recipe was contributed by an author of
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
Mexi-Chicken Casserole on a
cookbooks. However, the page has no SC
newspaper website
related to the purpose of the page, such as
reviews or links to other recipes, etc. This page
is OK for its purpose, but it doesn’t display
characteristics associated with a High rating.
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
This website is known for high quality content
about animals and the environment. This
Recipe for cherry-topped cake
particular page has a recipe for kids. There
isn’t much MC or SC. This page is OK for its
purpose, but it doesn’t display characteristics
associated with a High rating.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Medium Quality Characteristics
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
This is a professionally-created video of a cute
Video of a kitten meowing a lot
kitten meowing. This page is OK for its
purpose, but it doesn’t display characteristics
associated with a High rating.
Forum page on an online auction
● Mixed, but with some redeeming qualities
website. A user is looking for
The relative lack of MC is balanced a bit by the
help choosing a product category.
expertise of this forum. This forum is dedicated
to this kind of question.
This forum is about dance topics, and many
pages have expertise from a community of
ballet dancers. On this particular page,
participants have everyday experience washing
ballet shoes and make recommendations
Forum page on a dance website.
● Mixed, but with some redeeming qualities
based on their own experiences.
A user is looking for advice on
how to wash ballet shoes.
This page is “mixed” because there is some
distracting content that makes it hard to read
the MC. However, this is not a beauty contest!
Even though the page may be cluttered, there
is some valuable everyday expertise and
helpful MC, making Medium a good rating for
this page.
9.0
Page Quality Rating Tasks
At first, PQ rating may seem difficult. There are several aspects of the page and the website to look at and think about.
This type of rating takes practice. Rereading sections of these guidelines and thinking about the examples may help
when you encounter difficult rating tasks.
Important: Do not struggle with each PQ rating. Please give your best rating and move on. If you are having trouble
deciding between two ratings, use the lower rating. If you are torn between three ratings, choose the one in the middle.
Do not consider the country or location of the page or website for PQ rating. For example, English (US) raters should use
the same PQ standards when rating pages from other English language websites (UK websites, Canadian websites, etc.)
as they use when rating pages from U.S. websites. In other words, English (US) raters should not lower the PQ rating
because the page location (UK, Canada) does not match the task location.
These guidelines are specific to “regular” webpages. Occasionally, you may be asked to rate a landing page that is not a
webpage. For example, you may be asked to rate a PDF file, a PNG or JPEG image file, etc. When the landing page of
the URL is not a webpage, some of the criteria in these guidelines may not apply. In this case, please use your judgment.
Finally, this Page Quality Rating Guideline does not completely cover every aspect of page quality. If you find pages that
you truly believe to be High or Low quality, please rate them as such, even if the reason is based on something not
covered in this document. Please use the comment section to explain your reasoning. As always, use your judgment.
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9.1
Instructions for Rating Page Quality Tasks
The Page Quality task page is broken up into several parts:
1. Some initial questions about the task landing page.
2. A “PQ grid” to record your observations about PQ characteristics of the landing page.
3. The Overall PQ rating slider which records your Overall PQ rating.
4. A comment box to explain your rating.
Some results to the initial questions will end the task early. If the page is Porn, Foreign Language, or Did Not Load, you
will not fill in the PQ grid or assign an overall rating.
● Foreign Language should be used when the language on the landing page is NOT the task language, a language
that is commonly used by a significant percentage of the population in the task location, or English.
● Did Not Load should be used for pages where there is absolutely no content on the page created by the website.
There is no MC, SC, or Ads on the page. See this Wikipedia article for descriptions of different types of error
messages.
Similarly, if you respond that the page is malicious, harmful, deceptive, or lacking in purpose, you will also not fill in the PQ
grid or assign an overall rating.
The PQ grid is designed to be your "note pad." It allows you to record your observations about the landing page and the
website it belongs to.
9.1.1 Rating on Your Phone
You should open the task landing page on your phone using the standard Send to Device feature, unless otherwise
instructed. However, more intensive analysis on the website can be done on your computer. For example, you should
open and explore the links that are provided to help you do research on website information and reputation on your
computer.
Important: Clicking on the task URL may bring up an interstitial page. You can ignore this page in your rating criteria if
you can easily get to the MC. However, if the interstitial page makes it extremely hard (or impossible) to get to the MC,
that should factor into your Page Quality rating.
9.2
Reputation and E-A-T: Website or the Creators of the Main Content?
You must consider the reputation and E-A-T of both the website and the creators of the MC in order to assign a Page
Quality rating.
The reputation and E-A-T of the creators of the MC is extremely important when a website has different authors or content
creators on different pages. This is true of forum and Q&A pages, news websites, or websites that have user-generated
content, such as YouTube, Twitter, etc. The reputation and E-A-T assessment for pages on these types of websites may
differ drastically depending on what page you are evaluating. There are Highest quality YouTube videos created by
highly reputable and expert content creators, as well as Lowest quality YouTube videos created with a dangerous lack of
E-A-T on YMYL topics.
Important: Research the reputation and E-A-T of both the website and the creators of the MC. If either are lacking for
the purpose of the page, the Low or Lowest rating is appropriate.
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10.0 Page Quality Criteria for Specific Types of Pages
10.1 Ratings for Encyclopedia Pages
There are many encyclopedia-type websites. Some are highly-respected publications that are standard references, while
some are websites with content created and edited by anonymous users, with no editorial oversight or fact checking. We
may not always know the author of the specific encyclopedia article, and therefore must rely on website reputation
research to determine the E-A-T of the article. High and Highest quality ratings should only be used for encyclopedias
with very good reputations for accuracy and expertise, where the article itself is well-researched with appropriate
references cited.
A note about Wikipedia: in general, the website has a good reputation and is a very popular resource that is generally
valued for accuracy. However, there is no single author or organization that vouches for the accuracy of Wikipedia
articles, and the quality of pages varies. You should perform page-level checks on individual articles.
A Wikipedia article on a non-YMYL topic (example ) with a satisfying amount of accurate information and trustworthy
external references can usually be rated in the High range. Some Wikipedia articles may even be rated higher, although
remember that a high level of expertise is required for YMYL topics. A PQ rating in the Medium range is often appropriate
for pages with less extensive MC and external references. Naturally, Wikipedia articles with very little MC should get
lower PQ ratings. Factual inaccuracy is a sufficient reason for a Low or Lowest rating.
10.2 Ratings for Pages with Error Messages or No MC
Some pages are temporarily broken pages on otherwise functioning websites, while some pages have an explicit error (or
custom 404) message. In some cases, pages are missing MC as well. Please think about whether the page offers help
for users—did the webmaster spend time, effort, and care on the page?
Here are some examples.
Webpage/Type of Content
Characteristics of the Page
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is an example of a page with no MC. You
● Large amount of prominent Ads and no
might think that the MC is “missing” due to a
attempt to help users
problem with this particular page, but in fact,
this website has hundreds of pages that look
the same—no MC, just Ads. This website
shows Ads with little or no attempt to help
users, and should be rated Lowest quality.
● No MC (probably due to a temporary
technical error)
This page has no MC and no error message. It
MC
● Sufficient SC
is an isolated example of a page with no MC or
● Positive reputation
error message on a website for a reputable
newspaper for a town in Michigan. All of the
navigation links work, and the page was later
fixed.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Characteristics of the Page
PQ Rating and Explanation
This is an example of a “custom 404” page,
alerting users that the URL they are trying to
visit no longer exists. Some websites do a nice
job of alerting users about a problem and
● Nothing wrong, but nothing special
providing helpful tips.
This page is on a well-known merchant website
with a good reputation. However, this particular
page displays the bare minimum of content
needed to explain the problem to users, and
the only helpful content is a link to the
homepage.
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC for
its purpose
● Helpful SC that improves the user
This is an example of a “custom 404” page,
experience
alerting users that the URL they are trying to
● Positive reputation
visit no longer exists. This website does a nice
job of explaining the issue and providing helpful
tips, including a search box.
This is an example of a “custom 404” page.
These pages are designed to alert users that
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC for
the URL they are trying to visit no longer exists.
its purpose
The MC of this page is the cartoon, the caption,
● Helpful SC that improves the user
and the search functionality, which is specific to
experience
the content of the website. It is clear that time,
● Very positive reputation
effort, and talent was involved in the creation of
the MC.
This publication has a very positive reputation
and is specifically known for its cartoons, which
allows us to go as high as High+ to Highest.
10.3 Ratings for Forums and Q&A pages
Ratings for forum and Q&A pages can be challenging. The most important aspect is the E-A-T of the participants in the
discussion, which can be difficult to judge. Keep in mind the following:
● The Main Content on forum and Q&A pages includes both the question as well as the answers/responses and
resulting discussions.
● Rate forum and Q&A pages from the point of view of a user who visits the page, rather than a participant involved
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Here are some examples.
Webpage/Type of Content
Characteristics of the Page
PQ Rating and Explanation
We must evaluate this page from the point of
smoking (YMYL)
● YMYL page with inaccurate potentially
view of a user visiting this page from a search
dangerous medical advice
engine, rather than a participant. The question
is poorly worded and difficult to understand.
The answers are poorly worded and have
incorrect and potentially dangerous medical
advice, making it lowest quality MC.
In addition to having no answer, this page has
Ads and links to other questions (misleadingly
● Misleading page design
labeled as “Relevant answers”) displayed
● Unsatisfying amount of MC for the
prominently, which users may mistake for
purpose of the page
answers to the question. It takes a moment to
notice that this page actually has no answer.
Deceptive design and lack of an answer make
this page a frustratingly poor user experience
and cause this page to completely fail to
achieve its purpose.
In this example, the MC is boxed in red. Please
read the MC, including the completely unhelpful
"answer" to the question in the red box. This
answer is so unhelpful, we can consider this
● Misleading page design
question to be unanswered. This page has an
● Unsatisfying amount of MC for the
part (YMYL)
unsatisfying amount of MC.
purpose of the page
In addition to a very unhelpful “answer,” the
page design makes it difficult to distinguish the
MC from Ads. For example, below the answer,
we see a "sponsored answer," which has the
same format as the real answer, but is actually
an Ad and not an answer to the question. This
page design is somewhat misleading.
● Unsatisfying amount of MC for the
purpose of the page
Some websites rely on users to create virtually
all of their MC. In this case, the MC is the
user’s question. If there are no answers, the
amount of MC on the page is unsatisfying.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Characteristics of the Page
PQ Rating and Explanation
● Lacking E-A-T for the purpose of the
customs (YMYL)
page
There are 94 answers to this question with a
few results that seem helpful. Many of the
posts are wrong or misleading, including the
top answer, which is labeled the “best answer.”
This forum is about dance topics, and many
pages have expertise from a community of
ballet dancers. On this particular page,
participants have everyday experience washing
ballet shoes and make recommendations
● Mixed, but with some redeeming qualities
based on their own experiences.
This page is “mixed” because there is some
distracting content that makes it hard to read
the MC. However, this is not a beauty contest!
Even though the page may be cluttered, there
is some valuable everyday expertise and
helpful MC, making Medium a good rating for
this page.
● Everyday expertise for the purpose of the
Many participants share their personal
page
experiences with these products, giving details
such as how well certain models work with pet
hair. There are many descriptions of
participants’ own experiences with this product
and how well it works for them.
The answer on this page is written by an
● Everyday expertise for the purpose of the
employee of Build-A-Bear, so it offers a
Build-A-Bear (YMYL)
page
somewhat unique and presumably somewhat
expert answer.
The page design allows users to read the MC
as the Ads are clearly labeled, as well as both
the question and answer.
The person who posted the first message on
● High level of E-A-T for the topic and
this forum page provides a helpful resource on
purpose of the page
how to master the magic loop technique in
knitting. She also shares pictures of her own
version using an old pair of blue jeans. With
over 20 years of experience knitting socks, we
would consider her to be an expert on the topic.
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Webpage/Type of Content
Characteristics of the Page
PQ Rating and Explanation
The question on the page asks how long
● Everyday expertise
people live with cancer. There are many results
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
describing how long a loved one lived after
diagnosis. There is very little medical advice
and the focus of the page is sharing personal
experience. Many results are heartfelt and well
written.
This forum is well-known for discussions on
● High level of E-A-T for the topic and
luxury designer purses. On this particular
purpose of the page
forum page, members are consulting forum
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
experts who have expertise authenticating bags
from this brand. These experts can tell if a
particular bag is authentic or fake. While there
is an ad at the top and a few ads within the
forum message, it does not distract from the
MC, which is easy to find.
● High level of E-A-T for the topic and
purpose of the page
This forum is well-known for its community of
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
experts on quality assurance. The responses
are authoritative and trustworthy for the
purpose of the page. While there are Ads on
the page, it is easy to find the MC and they are
clearly labeled as “Sponsored Link.”
This discussion focuses on landscaping for a
● High level of E-A-T for the topic and
particular paludarium (an aquarium with
purpose of the page
terrestrial and aquatic elements). There is a lot
● A satisfying amount of high quality MC
of discussion and interaction between forum
members about the types of materials and
species used in the aquarium. The posts show
expertise in the niche topic of aquarium
landscaping.
● Very high level of E-A-T for the purpose
of the page
The purpose of the page is to answer questions
● Very positive reputation, and the website
about the usage of abbreviations. This website
is responsible for all content on the
has a very good reputation as a reference for
website
information on writing, publishing, etc. It is
considered highly authoritative and trustworthy
for the topic of the page.
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11.0 Page Quality Rating FAQs
Question
Answer
With practice, the amount of time needed for accurate PQ ratings will decrease. The
steps are important and are designed to help you assess many different aspects of
Why do we have to do all these
PQ. You may be surprised by what you find. Pages that initially look Low quality
steps? This takes a long time!
may turn out to be Medium or High quality with careful inspection. The reverse may
happen as well. We want your most informed, thoughtful opinion.
Are we just giving High quality
No! The goal is to do the exact opposite. These steps are designed to help you
ratings to pages that “look”
analyze the page without using a superficial “does it look good?” approach.
good?
Remember that we are not just talking about formal expertise. High quality pages
involve time, effort, expertise, and talent/skill. Sharing personal experience is a form
of everyday expertise.
Specifically for content creators, everyday expertise can be assessed based on the
talent/skill level depicted in the MC (e.g., great hair-styling advice, painting/crafting
abilities, skillful home/DIY work, etc.). In cases where the content creator is not
demonstrating formal or everyday expertise but is not doing any harm, Medium is an
You talked about expertise
appropriate rating.
when rating MC. Does
expertise matter for all topics?
Pretty much any topic has some form of expert, but E-A-T is especially important for
Aren't there some topics for
YMYL pages.
which there are no experts?
For most page purposes and topics, you can find experts even when the field itself is
niche or non-mainstream. For example, there are expert alternative medicine
websites with leading practitioners of acupuncture, herbal therapies, etc. There are
also pages about alternative medicine written by people with no expertise or
experience. E-A-T should distinguish between these two scenarios.
One final note: if the purpose of the page is harmful, then expertise doesn't matter. It
should be rated Lowest!
For almost any type of page or informational topic, there is a range of content quality.
Remember that high quality content is defined as content that takes time, effort,
expertise, and talent/skill. Pages that have a harmful purpose should be rated
Lowest quality, regardless of their topic.
Aren't there some types of
pages or topics, such as
For example, there are both High and Low quality celebrity gossip pages. Often, the
celebrity gossip, that always
purpose of these pages is to share scandalous, but potentially true personal
have Low quality content?
information about celebrities. We can consider the MC of a gossip page to be high
quality if it is accurate and interesting information from a reliable source. On the
other hand, demonstrably inaccurate information and unsubstantiated conspiracy
theories, etc., should be rated Lowest.
I've never seen a High quality
page of type X. If there are no
For some topics or types of pages, there may not be many (or any!) High quality
high quality pages of this type,
pages now, but there may be in the future. We need a uniform set of standards that
why are we giving existing
apply to all pages, even for pages that have not yet been created.
pages a Low quality rating?
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Question
Answer
Some of these criteria seem
Art pages do have a purpose: artistic expression. Pages created for artistic
unfair. For example, some art
expression do not deserve the Low quality rating simply because they have no other
pages do not have a purpose.
purpose. Artistic expression, humor, entertainment, sharing photos and videos, etc.
Are these pages Low quality?
are all valid and valued page purposes.
If I have to open the task URL
Yes! More intensive analysis on the website (e.g., researching E-A-T) can be done
on my phone, can I check for
on your computer. Any time that using your computer will help you complete the
E-A-T on my desktop/laptop?
task, feel free to use it.
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Part 2: Understanding Mobile User Needs
12.0 Understanding Mobile Users, Mobile Queries, and Mobile Results
What do you do on your mobile smartphone?
People rely on their phones for many different tasks in different environments. Users may want to search the web or may
want to tell the phone to do something specific. Keep in mind that tasks can be simple or complex, and may take multiple
steps to complete. For example, a simple task may be to find the director of a movie. A complex task may be to find a
movie’s showtimes nearby, purchase tickets, get directions, and then use the phone’s navigation to go to the theater.
We expect our phones to do a lot. At the same time, phones can be challenging to use, especially compared to a desktop
computer or laptop:
Entering data may be cumbersome: typing is difficult on mobile smartphones, and when users speak to their
phones instead of typing, voice recognition may not always be accurate.
Small screen sizes make it difficult to use some phone features, apps, and webpages.
Some webpages are difficult to use on a mobile phone. Website navigation can be difficult as menus and
navigation links may be small. Webpages may require left-to-right scrolling to read text. Images may not fit on
the screen. In addition, many mobile devices cannot access webpages with Flash or other similar features.
Internet connectivity can be slow and inconsistent for mobile users going in and out of networks. App
opening, recognition of voice commands, and webpage load times can be very slow on a mobile phone.
Important: Mobile smartphones should make tasks easy, even for mobile users with a small screen device (i.e.,
size of smartphone, not a tablet). Users want results right away, at that moment, and may not be able to spend a lot of
time to find what they are looking for.
In order to do mobile rating tasks, you must have experience using a mobile smartphone, which we’ll also refer to as a
mobile phone in these guidelines. If you are not familiar with voice commands, device actions, or phone features, please
take some time to experiment on a mobile smartphone. For example, you can try some of these voice commands:
Android voice commands , or say “OK Google” and then “Help” on an Android device
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12.1 Important Rating Definitions and Ideas
Query: This refers to the word(s) and/or number(s) that a user types or speaks into a mobile phone. In these guidelines,
queries have square brackets around them. If a user says “navigate home,” we display: [navigate home]. If a user types
“iPhone” in the search box, we display: [iphone].
There are many different types of queries because users ask their phones to do many things, from opening an app to
calling a friend to searching the web.
User: The user is the person trying to accomplish something by typing or speaking into a mobile phone with a small
screen (i.e., size of a smartphone, not a tablet).
User Intent: When a user types or speaks a query, he or she is trying to accomplish something. We refer to this goal as
the user intent.
Locale: All queries have a locale, which is the language and location for the task. Locales are represented by a two-letter
country code. For a current list of country codes, click here . We sometimes refer to the locale as the task location.
User Location: This tells us where the user is located, and should be inferred from the map provided.
Search Engine Results Page (SERP): The page a search engine shows after a user enters a query in the search box.
The SERP is made up of result blocks.
Result: We will use the word result to refer to the result block and the landing page.
Result Block: This is an individual “block” that appears on the user’s phone in response to the query. The result
block may display information in the block itself or contain links, or may do both.
● The Landing Page (LP) is the page you see after you click a link in the result block.
Device Actions: Mobile phones and other devices can respond to voice commands to perform many actions, such as
setting an alarm or opening an app. This is a specific type of query that we’ll refer to as a Device Action query.
Device Action query: Specific type of query where users ask their phone to perform an action. These are
frequently spoken commands used to complete actions that would normally require interaction with the screen or
the device's controls.
Device Action result: The phone may respond to a Device Action query by performing an action, such as
calling a phone number, etc.
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12.2 Understanding the Query
Understanding the query is the first step in evaluating the task. Remember, a query is what a user types or
speaks into a mobile phone.
Some tasks include a query research link, which you should use if you don’t understand the query or user
intent. Otherwise, please do web research using Google or an online dictionary or encyclopedia. If you still
don’t understand the query or user intent, please release the task.
Important: If you research the query on Google, please do not rely on the top results on the SERP. A query may have
other meanings not represented on Google’s search results pages. Do not assign a high rating to a webpage just
because it appears at the top of a list of search results on Google.
Think about users in your locale typing or speaking the following queries into their phone.
Query
Likely User Intent
[population of paris], English (US)
Find the current population of Paris, France.
[starbucks near me], English (US)
Find the nearest Starbucks location.
[weather], English (US)
Find weather information in the user location right now.
[call mom], English (US)
Call/dial the number stored for the contact “Mom” on the device.
12.3 Locale and User Location
All queries have a task language and task location (referred to in rating tasks as the "Locale"). The locale is important for
understanding the query and user intent. Users in different locations may have different expectations for the same query.
Each rating task will show you the User Location information: some tasks have an approximate user location area and
some tasks have a very specific user location.
Note: Examples in the following sections will include a User Location in the form of a city and state. Note that in the actual
rating tasks, you will need to infer the User Location based on the map that is provided, as discussed in Section 28.
For many or most queries, the user location does not change our understanding of the query and user intent. Here are
some examples: [facebook.com], [pictures of kittens], [distance between the earth and the moon], [call mom]. If the task
does not display a user location, please evaluate it as a query where the location does not matter and use your judgment.
When is the user location important in understanding query interpretation and user intent? Please use both web research
and your personal judgment to answer this question. Ask yourself, “Would users in one city or country be looking for
something different than users in another city or country?”
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12.4 Queries with an Explicit Location
Sometimes users tell search engines exactly what kinds of results they are looking for by adding the desired location in
the query, regardless of their user location. We'll call this location inside the query the “explicit location.” The explicit
location makes queries much easier to understand and interpret.
Sometimes the explicit location matches the user location or locale, and sometimes it doesn't.
When there is an explicit location in the query, pay attention to it! Users use explicit locations to indicate exactly what they
are looking for.
12.5 Queries with Multiple Meanings
Many queries have more than one meaning. For example, the query [apple] might refer to the computer brand or the fruit.
We will call these possible meanings query interpretations.
Dominant Interpretation: The dominant interpretation of a query is what most users mean when they type the query. Not
all queries have a dominant interpretation. The dominant interpretation should be clear to you, especially after doing a
little web research.
Common Interpretation: A common interpretation of a query is what many or some users mean when they type a query.
A query can have multiple common interpretations.
Minor Interpretations: Sometimes you will find less common interpretations. These are interpretations that few users
have in mind. We will call these minor interpretations.
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Query: [apple]
Locale: English (US)
Query: [mercury]
Locale: English (US)
12.6 Query Meanings Can Change Over Time
Remember to think about the query and its current meaning as you are rating. We will assume users are looking for
current information about a topic, the most recent product model, the most recent occurrence of a recurring event, etc.,
unless otherwise specified by the query.
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The interpretation of the query [iphone], English (US) has changed over time as new iPhone models are released. The
first iPhone was introduced in 2007. Users searching for [iphone], English (US) at that time were looking for the new (at
the time) first iPhone model. Most users now are looking for the most recent or upcoming iPhone model. In the future,
new models will come out and the dominant interpretation will change again.
12.7 Understanding User Intent
It can be helpful to think of queries as having one or more of the following intents.
Know query, some of which are Know Simple queries
Do query, some of which are Device Action queries
Website query, when the user is looking for a specific website or webpage
Visit-in-person query, some of which are looking for a specific business or organization, some of which are
looking for a category of businesses
12.7.1 Know and Know Simple Queries
The intent of a Know query is to find information on a topic. Users want to Know more about something.
Know Simple queries are a special type of Know query. Know Simple queries seek a very specific answer, like a fact,
diagram, etc. This answer has to be correct and complete, and can be displayed in a relatively small amount of space:
the size of a mobile phone screen. As a rule of thumb, if most people would agree on a correct answer, and it would fit in
1-2 sentences or a short list of items, the query can be called a Know Simple query.
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Know Simple queries may be questions such as [how tall is barack obama]. Frequently, Know Simple queries do not
have question words. For example, [barack obama height] has the same user intent as [how tall is barack obama], but is
not in a question format.
Most queries are not Know Simple queries, such as:
● Broad, complex, and/or in-depth informational queries that do not have a short answer
● Ambiguous or unclear informational queries
● Informational queries on controversial topics
● Informational queries with no definitive “right answer”
● Queries where different users may want different types of information, or different sources of information
Here are some examples where the Know Simple query asks for a simple fact, which can be answered correctly and
completely in a small amount of space, and the Know query answer is more complex.
Know Simple Query
Know Query
Explanation
The Know query is a broad information query and different
[barack obama height]
[barack obama]
users may be looking for different things (e.g., biography,
[how tall is obama]
books, social media posts, etc.).
The Know query is a broad information query and different
[new york city population 2013]
[new york city]
users may be looking for different things (e.g., tourist and trip
planning information, facts, photographs, history).
The Know query is a broad query for medical information
[who is graves disease named
[graves disease]
and different users may have different needs. There is no
after]
single “answer” for this query.
The Know query is a broad query for a particular service
[macy’s store hours]
[macy’s gift wrap options]
offered by a department store, and does not have a short
answer.
[what is the symbol for the
The Know query is a broad query and there is no short,
[what nickel is used for]
element nickel]
complete answer.
[who won the 2014 bcs national
[who is going to win the bcs
The Know query asks for an opinion and there is no
championship game]
national championship game]
definitive answer.
Even though the Know query is theoretically a yes/no
[what is starbucks stock price]
[should i invest in starbucks stock]
question, there is not a single answer that everyone would
agree on.
Raters must think about mobile users when deciding if queries are Know Simple. Use your judgment here.
Important Rating Example: The query [weather] may seem like a broad information query, but most mobile users likely
have a fairly simple informational need: to find the current or upcoming temperature, and the chance of local weather
events, such as rain or snow. Therefore, we will consider queries like [weather], [weather today], [weather tomorrow],
[weather this week] to be Know Simple queries for mobile phone users.
12.7.2 Do and Device Action Queries
The intent of a Do query is to accomplish a goal or engage in an activity on a phone. The goal or activity may be to
download, to buy, to obtain, to be entertained by, or to interact with a website or app. Users want to Do something.
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Here are some examples.
Query
Likely User Intent
[get candy crush game]
Install the Candy Crush game.
[online personality test]
Take an online personality test.
[what is my bmi?]
Calculate BMI (body mass index).
[buy citizen kane dvd]
Purchase this DVD.
Device Action queries are a special kind of Do query. Users are asking their phone to do something for them. Users
giving Device Action queries may be using phones in the hands-free mode, for example, while in a car. It’s very
important for mobile phones to accommodate Device Action queries, and we have a high standard for rating these
results.
A Device Action query usually has a clear action word and intent. The verb or action word is often at the beginning of the
query, but a query might start with “OK Google” or “Google” or “Siri” or “I want to.” Use your judgment.
Here are some examples of Device Action queries.
Type of Action
Device Action Query Examples (verb or action shown in bold)
[call mom’s mobile phone], [place a call to anne jones], [ok google, could you please call my
Call someone
mom]
Send a message
[send a text to john smith], [text john smith], [sms john smith]
Get map information (e.g.,
[navigate to central park], [show me traffic], [show me a map]
directions, traffic, etc.)
Open an app or webpage, or
[go to amazon.com], [open facebook app], [open facebook.com], [open the business section of
install an app
the new york times], [siri, would you open facebook for me], [get candy crush app]
[play me songs from the white album], [watch the life of pi], [show me cute kittens], [i want to
Play or view media
look at cute kittens], [i want to listen to imagine dragons radioactive]
Schedule a meeting
[schedule a meeting for 9am]
Set an alarm or timer
[set an alarm for 6am], [alarm for 6am], [countdown timer for 30 secs]
Here are some examples of queries that are not Device Action queries.
Query
Query is NOT a Device Action Query: Explanation
[phone number empire state
There is no action word. The user may be looking for the phone number without the intention of
building]
calling the number. We’ll consider this a Know Simple query.
[facebook.com]
There is no action word, such as “open.” We will consider this a Website query.
[amazon.com]
There is no action word, such as “open.” We will consider this a Website query.
There is no action word, such as “call” or “text.” We will consider this a Know query for
[anne jones]
information.
12.7.3 Website Queries
The intent of a Website query is to locate a specific website or webpage that users have requested. This single webpage
is called the target of the query.
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One type of Website query is a URL Query, which can be:
● Exact, perfectly-formed, working URLs, such as [http://www.ibm.com] or [www.ibm.com] or [ibm.com].
● Imperfect URL queries: Queries that look like URL queries, but are not “working URLs”. These URLs do not load
if you type or paste them into your browser address bar. Even so, we believe users have a specific page in mind.
Here are some examples.
Query
Likely User Intent
[kayak], English (US)
View the Kayak website.
[youtube], English (US)
View the YouTube website.
[ebay], Italian (IT)
View the Italian eBay website.
[new york time health section], English (US)
View the Health section of the New York Times website.
[canon.com eos digital camera], English (US)
View the EOS digital cameras page on the Canon website.
12.7.4 Visit-in-Person Queries and User Location
Users carry mobile phones with them throughout the day, for example, at work, to school, to restaurants, or running
errands. One reason to carry a mobile phone is to have help with Visit-in-Person queries, such as finding coffee shops,
gas stations, ATMs, restaurants, etc. Because mobile phones are often used for Visit-in-Person queries, make sure to
consider visit-in-person intent as a possibility for mobile phone users.
Some queries clearly “ask” for nearby information or nearby results (e.g., businesses, organizations, other nearby places).
Some queries are not asking for nearby information or nearby results. Here are some examples.
Queries with Visit-in-Person Intent
Query with Non-Visit-in-Person Intent
More examples: [boston red sox], [washington post], [scrabble
More examples: [pizza], [yoga class], [coffee shops], [movie
cheat], [definition of sedentary], [aapl], [beyonce], [angry birds],
showtimes], [car repair], [dentists], [bank of america atm
[small dog breeds], [dance videos], [oscars 2012], [pick up lines],
locations], [starbucks near me]
[bank of america login]
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And some queries could go either way. Some users may want nearby results and others may not.
Here are some examples of queries with both visit-in-person and non-visit-in-person intent:
[hotels]
[post office]
[apple store]
[citibank]
[best buy]
[office depot]
[target]
[library]
[bank of america]
[the gap]
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Sometimes, the user location can change our understanding of the query. For users close to Sunnyvale, California, the
query [turmeric] could have two different interpretations: a popular restaurant named Turmeric or the spice turmeric.
In most other user locations, there is no restaurant (or anything else) named Turmeric and there is just one interpretation
of the query [turmeric]: the spice. The Sunnyvale restaurant is not well-known outside of Sunnyvale, California.
Use your common sense when thinking about queries and whether they have possible visit-in-person intent.
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12.7.5 Queries with Multiple User Intents
Many queries have more than one likely user intent. Please use your judgment when trying to decide if one intent is more
likely than another intent.
Query
Likely User Intent
Depending on the user need and location, users may want to visit the official homepage (Website),
[harvard]
get directions (Visit-in-Person), or learn more about the school (Know).
Most users want to go to a nearby Walmart (Visit-in-Person) or view the homepage to shop online
[walmart]
(Website). Some or few users may want to learn more information about the company (Know).
12.8 Understanding Result Blocks
The following sections contain examples of different types of queries and results. In these guidelines, please
assume that the result blocks and pages are easy to use on the phone, unless otherwise noted.
12.8.1 Web Search Result Block Examples
Web Search Result Blocks typically have a title link, a URL and a “snippet” of text describing the page. For many queries,
Web Search Result Blocks are the most helpful type of result.
Query, User Location, User Intent
Web Search Result Block
Query: [cuisinart food processor reviews]
User Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
User Intent: This is a Know query. The user
wants to find recent reviews of Cuisinart food
processors.
Result: This is a Web Search Result Block
that has a link to a landing page with Cuisinart
reviews.
Query: [broadway tickets]
User Location: New York City, New York
User Intent: This is a Know query or Do
query. The user wants to search prices and/or
purchase tickets to a Broadway show in New
York City.
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12.8.2 Special Content Result Block Examples
Special Content Result Blocks (SCRBs) appear in the search results page, along with Web Search Result Blocks. They
are frequently, but not always, the first result on the search results page.
Special Content Result Blocks are designed to show content directly to users on the search results page. From working
calculators to playable videos to interactive weather information, these results help users immediately get information or
content, and may not require additional “clicks” or page loads.
Because mobile phones can be difficult to use, SCRBs can help mobile phone users accomplish their tasks very quickly,
especially for certain Know Simple, Visit-in-Person, and Do queries.
Important: Please assume that any interactive features work and function properly. Some notes:
● All result blocks are “screenshots” or images of search results with prominent links enabled. Unfortunately, a
screenshot or image of an interactive result block will not function as it would for a real user. For the purpose of
rating, please assume that interactive result blocks do function as intended. Try to interact with the result
block as some links, buttons, or other features may work.
● There may be a delay between when the rating task is created and when you actually rate the block, causing
some information in special content result blocks to be a few hours or even days out of date. Stock price or
weather informational blocks are designed to give users extremely current and timely information. However, due
to a delay in rating time, the information may no longer be accurate. Don’t penalize a special content result block
for being out of date. Assume that the blocks show current information for users, unless instructed
otherwise.
Query, User Location, User Intent
Special Content Result Block
Query: [weather]
User Location: Chicago, Illinois
User Intent: This is a Know Simple query
since mobile users have a fairly simple
informational need: find the current
temperature and chance of rain or snow. The
user wants to know the weather for the User
Location.
Note: Assume the block shows current
information for users.
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Query, User Location, User Intent
Special Content Result Block
Query: [emma stone movies]
User Location: Des Moines, Iowa
User Intent: This is a Know query. The user
wants to get information on movies with Emma
Stone.
Result: In this result block, users can
immediately see some popular movies starring
Emma Stone, with an option to click on the
links to learn more about each movie. Users
can also swipe to see a list of more movies.
Query: [calories in a banana]
User Location: Oakland, California
User Intent: This is a Know Simple query.
The user wants to find out how many calories
are in a banana.
Query: [baseball scores]
User Location: Wichita, Kansas
User Intent: This is a Know query. The user
wants to find the most recent Major League
Baseball scores.
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Query, User Location, User Intent
Special Content Result Block
Query: [coldplay fix you video]
User Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
User Intent: This is a Do query. The user
wants to watch the music video for the song
“Fix You” by Coldplay.
Result: By clicking on this result block, users
can play the music video for the song on their
phone, learn more about the artist/album, etc.
Query: [what is the tallest tree]
User Location: Boise, Idaho
User Intent: This is a Know Simple query.
The user wants to know what type of tree is
the tallest.
12.8.3 Device Action Result Block Examples
A mobile phone should respond to a Device Action query and do what the user is asking. If the block is a Device Action
query to open an app, please assume that the user has the app installed on their phone. If the query is to download the
app, please assume that the user does not have the app installed on their phone.
Query, User Location, User Intent, Result
Device Action Result Block
Query: [open angry birds]
User Location: Little Rock, Arkansas
User Intent: This is a Device Action query.
The user wants the device to open the Angry
Birds app so he/she can play the game.
Result: In this result block, users can click the
link to open the app.
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Query, User Location, User Intent, Result
Device Action Result Block
Query: [go to amazon.com]
User Location: Glendale California
User Intent: This is a Device Action query.
The user wants to go to amazon.com to
interact with the website.
Result: In this result block, users can click
the links to go directly to the website.
Query: [set alarm for 5 o’clock am]
User Location: Tacoma, Washington
User Intent: This is a Device Action query.
The user wants to set the device’s alarm to go
off at 5:00 AM.
Result: In this result block, the query has
initiated the alarm on the phone to be set for
5:00 AM.
Query: [send text to mom]
User Location: Tacoma, Washington
User Intent: This is a Device Action query.
The user wants to send a text message to a
contact nicknamed “Mom.”
Result: In this Device Action Result Block,
the query has initiated a text to the contact
nicknamed “Mom,” with an option to text
either the work or mobile number.
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Query, User Location, User Intent, Result
Device Action Result Block
Query: [call best buy]
User Location: Mountain View, California
User Intent: This is a Device Action query.
The user wants to call the nearest Best Buy
store.
Result: In this Device Action Result Block, the
query has initiated a call to the nearest Best
Buy location.
12.8.4 How Device Action Results are Displayed in Rating Tasks
Important note: Users issuing queries actually experience the phone’s response to the query, while raters are given a
description of it. If an iPhone user says “Siri, call Mom,” the iPhone displays a visual prompt to show that it’s dialing a
phone number. In these rating tasks, you will see a description of this action.
Please also assume that the phone successfully performs the action in a fully satisfying way.
Below are some additional examples of Device Action queries, along with the corresponding “action text” displayed in the
rating task.
This is what the user sees on his or her phone for the
This is what you (the rater) might see in the rating task
Device Action query
The left side shows what the user sees on the phone for the query [set alarm for 30 mins], while the right side shows the
“action text” that you (the rater) might see in the rating task. The text on the right indicates that the user issued the
query at 1:48 PM (13:48:00), and the device has set its alarm to go off 30 minutes later at 2:18 PM (14:18:00).
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This is what the user sees on his or her phone for the
This is what you (the rater) might see in the rating task
Device Action query
The left side shows what the user sees on the phone for the query [open facebook app]. In this case, the phone shows
an “Opening app” message and then opens the app. The right side shows the “action text” that you (the rater) might see
in the rating task. The text indicates that the device responded by opening the Facebook app on the user’s phone.
The left side shows what the user sees on the phone for the query [call dan], while the right side shows the “action text”
that you (the rater) might see in the rating task. The user wants to dial the number stored for the contact “Dan” on the
device. This text indicates that the device responded by displaying the contact’s phone number and dialing the number.
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This is what the user sees on his or her phone for the
This is what you (the rater) might see in the rating task
Device Action query
For some Device Action queries, the device displays a list of options to choose from before it can respond to the
Device Action query. Here is an example for the query [call target]. The user is shown a list of Target stores in the area
to choose from. This example shows that the Device Action result taken by the device will be to call the desired Target
store after the user makes his/her selection.
Here is an example for the query [play adele]. The user is shown a "Play media" type of result. In this case, since the
user wants to play music, the Device Action result shown is a "Play Music" button to click. Clicking this button will play
the specified song if the user has the song on his/her device. If not, clicking the result box will give the user options to
hear the specified song online.
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12.9 Rating on Your Phone Issues
We understand that raters using different phones, operating systems, and browsers may have different experiences. In
general, do what you would do naturally, and rate based on your experience. Here are some additional points to keep in
mind when you are rating on your phone:
● If you see one of these messages when you open a landing page on your phone:
o Asks whether you want to open the page in the browser or the website’s app: select and evaluate the
webpage. However, if the result automatically opens an app by default based on your phone’s settings
(e.g. some users have set all YouTube pages to automatically open the result in the YouTube app), you
should rate your natural app experienceyou do not have to change your phone’s default settings.
o Asks whether you want to visit the mobile page or desktop page: it is fine to select the mobile page as
long as the landing page is the same. Sometimes, the mobile option will bring you to the mobile
homepage instead of the specific URL in the task. You may need to check that the mobile page is in fact
the same URL as the desktop page.
Please open and look at PDF files. Your experience may be easier or harder than other users depending on your
phone and browser, but you should still open the PDF file and look at it.
● Occasionally, you may be assigned some of these rating tasks on a desktop computer, but please rate from the
perspective of a mobile user unless otherwise instructed.
● You should assume queries were issued on a smartphone unless otherwise stated in the task or project-specific
instructions.
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Part 3: Needs Met Rating Guideline
13.0 Rating Using the Needs Met Scale
There are many different kinds of queries and results, but the process of rating is the same: Needs Met rating tasks ask
you to focus on mobile user needs and think about how helpful and satisfying the result is for the mobile users.
This is what the Needs Met rating slider looks like:
Rating
Description
A special rating category, which only applies to certain queries and results. All or almost all
Fully Meets (FullyM)
mobile users would be immediately and fully satisfied by the result and would not need to
view other results to satisfy their need.
Highly Meets (HM)
Very helpful for many or most mobile users. Some users may wish to see additional results.
Helpful for many users OR very helpful for some mobile users. Some or many users may
Moderately Meets (MM)
wish to see additional results.
Helpful for fewer mobile users. There is a connection between the query and the result, but
Slightly Meets (SM)
not a strong or satisfying connection. Many or most users would wish to see additional
results.
Completely fails to meet the needs of the mobile users. All or almost all users would wish to
Fails to Meet (FailsM)
see additional results.
Please note that you may assign in-between ratings. Use in-between ratings if you think the rating of a result falls
between two labels. You can either drag the slider or click on the point that you want the slider to land on.
13.1 Rating Result Blocks: Block Content and Landing Pages
For Needs Met rating, you will assign a rating to each result. Each result includes the content inside the result block and
landing pages associated with the result.
Type of Block
What to Rate
The content inside this type of block should always play a large role in your rating.
Special Content Result Block
(SCRB)
In addition, think about whether a user would click on the link(s) if available, in order
to satisfy their user need.
Note: Assume that interactive
result blocks function as intended.
● If most users would not click, rate the Special Content Result Block based
Try to interact with the result block
on the block content alone.
as some links, buttons, or other
● If some or many users would click, you may consider the helpfulness of the
features in your rating task may
landing page(s) in addition to the content in the block. In this case, both
work.
need to be helpful to justify a high rating.
Web Search Result Block
A click is required, and you should evaluate the landing page to assign a rating.
Device Action Result Block
Base your rating on the helpfulness of the action itself.
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For example, think about the query [what does love mean].
Result Block
Query: [what does love mean]
Rating
Most users would probably not click on
the Special Content Result Block,
because the block contains a large
amount of helpful content and has no
Special Content Result Block
obvious landing page link associated
with it.
Therefore, base your rating on the
content inside the block itself.
In this case, users would have to click on
the web search result in order to get an
answer to the question.
Web Search Result Block
Therefore, base your rating on the
content of the landing page.
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Here are some examples of Special Content Result Blocks where the block should be rated primarily on the content inside
the block itself. As always, please use your judgment.
Query and Special Content Result Block
Query: [utopia animal hospital]
Query: [chicago weather]
Query: [calories in a banana]
Query: [how to find security code on
Query: [how did Lincoln die]
Query: [movies san francisco]
visa]
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13.2 Fully Meets (FullyM)
Fully Meets is a special rating category, which can be used in the following situations:
● The query and user need must be specific, clear, and unambiguous.
● The result must be fully satisfying for mobile users, requiring minimal effort for users to immediately get or use
what they are looking for.
● All or almost all users would be completely satisfied by the result—users issuing that query would not need
additional results to fully satisfy the user intent.
In other words, the Fully Meets rating should be reserved for results that are the “complete and perfect response or
answer” so that no other results are necessary for all or almost all users to be fully satisfied.
You will need to use your judgment to decide whether a result block can Fully Meet the user need. Here are some
scenarios when the Fully Meets rating is appropriate:
● The user is clearly looking for a specific webpage or website and the result block with the specific webpage or
website Fully Meets the user’s need.
● The user is trying to complete a device action and the result block accomplishes the desired request.
● The user is looking for a very specific fact or piece of information and the result block provides the information
immediately, thoroughly, accurately, and clearly. No other results would be needed. Before using the Fully Meets
rating for queries seeking a very specific fact or piece of information, you must check for accuracy and confirm
that the information is supported by expert consensus where such consensus exists.
Fully Meets may apply in other situations as well. Ask yourself whether the result block alone is the perfect and complete
result that would fully satisfy all or almost all users. Be conservative when using the Fully Meets rating. When in doubt,
consider a lower rating.
Note: If a result block is very close to being fully satisfying, but the block alone may not be sufficient in order to fully satisfy
all or almost all users, a rating of Highly Meets+ may be appropriate.
Sometimes you have to think about how specific the user need is and will need to make a judgment call on whether it is
specific enough to possibly have a Fully Meets rating.
13.2.1 Examples of Fully Meets (FullyM) Result Blocks
Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
What you might see in the
Query: [amazon.com]
rating task:
User Location:
The query has clear intent to go
Action: Open a specific
Austin, Texas
to amazon.com and the phone
webpage
is opening the specified website.
User Intent: Go to
amazon.com.
Website Name: Amazon.com:
Online Shopping for
Electronics, Apparel,
Computers ...
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
Query: [amazon]
The query has clear intent to go
to the amazon.com website.
User Location:
While there may be other
Austin, Texas
interpretations for the query, the
dominant one is by far the
User Intent: Go to the
website.
Amazon website.
Query: [target website]
User Location: Jacksonville,
The query has clear intent to go
Florida
to target.com.
User Intent: Go to the Target
website.
Query: [shop nordstrom
online]
User Location: Monterey,
The query has clear intent to go
California
to the Nordstrom website.
User Intent: Go to the
Nordstrom website for online
shopping.
Query: [titanic imdb]
User Location: Lexington,
The query has clear intent to go
Kentucky
to the IMDb page for Titanic.
User Intent: Go to the IMDb
page for Titanic.
Query: [www.yahoo.c0m]
Even though this is an imperfect
User Location: Denver,
URL query, it’s clear the user
Colorado
wants to go to the Yahoo
website.
User Intent: Go to the Yahoo
website.
Query: [cnn health]
User Location: Annapolis,
The query has clear intent to go
Maryland
to the Health section of the
cnn.com webpage.
User Intent: Go to the Health
section of cnn.com.
Query: [cnn]
The query has clear intent to
User Location: Annapolis,
access CNN news and content.
Maryland
The website has the content the
user is searching for, and fully
User Intent: Go to the CNN
satisfies the user intent.
website.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
This result Fully Meets the user
need whether they want the Yelp
app or the Yelp website, which
are both popular.
Note: If you see this kind of
result, assume that the user has
Query: [yelp]
the app installed on their phone.
User Location: Raleigh,
Clicking on the Yelp link above
North Carolina
the logo opens the app directly,
and clicking on the “Open on
User Intent: Open the Yelp
yelp.com” link gives the option of
app or go to the website at
opening the app or website.
yelp.com.
Query: [lebron james stats
basketball- reference.com]
The query has clear intent to go
User Location:
to the player statistics page for
Miami, Florida
LeBron James on a specific
website,
User Intent: Go to the player
basketball-reference.com.
statistics page for LeBron
James on a specific website.
What the user sees:
Query: [open instagram]
This Device Action query is
clear and specific: the user
User Location:
What you might see in the
wants to open the Instagram
Laguna Beach, California
rating task:
app. The result block shows the
phone in the process of opening
User Intent: Open the
Action: Open an app
the specified app—it Fully
Instagram app on the user’s
Meets the user need.
device.
App: Instagram
Query: [open bing search
app]
The result block shows that the
phone has detected that the app
User Location: Dallas, Texas
is not installed and gives the
option of downloading the app.
User Intent: Open the Bing
This result Fully Meets the user
Search app on the user’s
need.
device.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
What the user sees:
Query: [open facebook app]
This Device Action query is
clear and specific: the user
User Location: Richmond,
wants to open the Facebook
Virginia
What you might see in the
app. The result block shows the
rating task:
phone’s confirmation that it is
User Intent: Open the
opening the app—it Fully Meets
Facebook app on the user’s
Action: Open an app
the user need.
device.
App: Facebook
What the user sees:
Query: [set alarm for 5
This Device Action query is
o’clock am]
clear and specific: the user
wants to set the phone’s alarm
User Location: Tacoma,
What you might see in the
clock for 5:00 AM. The result
Washington
rating task:
block shows the phone in the
process of setting the alarm at
User Intent: Set the device’s
Action: Set alarm
the specified time—it Fully
alarm to go off at 5:00 AM.
Meets the user need.
Alarm Time: 5:00 AM
Chef Chu’s is a Chinese
restaurant located in the user
location. This result block
Query: [chef chu phone
immediately shows the correct
number]
phone number with the option to
call the number directly on the
User Location: Los Altos,
device—it Fully Meets the user
California
intent.
User Intent: Find the phone
Note: You must check for
number for the restaurant
accuracy before using the Fully
called Chef Chu’s.
Meets rating. You can verify
that the phone number in this
SCRB is correct by checking
Chef Chu's official website.
What the user sees:
This Device Action query is
clear and specific: the user
wants to call the nearest Best
Query: [call best buy]
Buy store. The result block
shows the phone in the process
What you might see in the
of calling the store with the
User Location: Mountain
rating task:
correct phone number—it Fully
View, California
Meets the user need.
Action: Make a call
User Intent: Call the nearest
Note: You must check for
Best Buy store. Note that
Business Name: Best Buy
accuracy before using the Fully
there is only one Best Buy
Meets rating. You can verify
store located in Mountain
Location: 2460 E Charleston Rd,
that the phone number in this
View.
Mountain View, CA 94043
Device Action block is correct by
checking Best Buy's official
Phone number: (650) 903-0591
website for the location in
Mountain View.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
What the user sees:
Query: [open map of italy]
This Device Action query is
clear and specific: the user
User Location: Baltimore,
wants to see a map of Italy. The
What you might see in the
Maryland
result block shows a map with a
rating task:
link to open it in Google
User Intent: Open a map of
Maps—it Fully Meets the user
Action: Open map
Italy on the user’s device.
need.
Location: Italy
What the user sees:
This Device Action query is
Query: [navigate to yosemite
clear and specific: the user
national park]
What you might see in the
wants to navigate to Yosemite
rating task:
National Park. The result block
User Location: Seattle,
shows the phone in the process
Washington
Action: Navigation
of opening up the Navigation
app, which will give the user
User Intent: Navigate to
Destination: Yosemite National
turn-by-turn directions from the
Yosemite National Park from
Park
user’s location—it Fully Meets
the user’s location.
the user need.
Destination Address: Yosemite
Village, CA 95389
Query: [how to find security
The result block displays the
code on visa]
complete and correct answer
prominently in the result block,
User Location: Chicago,
in a way that is easy for users
Illinois
on mobile devices to read. The
block also includes an image
User Intent: Find out how to
showing users exactly where to
locate the security code on a
find the code, and the block
Visa card.
Fully Meets the user need.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
The result block displays the
Query: [starbucks stock
complete and correct answer
price]
prominently in the result block,
in a way that is easy for users
User Location: Alexandria,
on mobile devices to read—it
Virginia
Fully Meets the user need.
User Intent: Find the current
Note: Assume that the result
stock price for Starbucks.
shows current information for
users.
Query: [new york city
The result block displays the
population 2012]
complete and correct answer
prominently in the result block,
User Location: Pasadena,
in a way that is easy for users
California
on mobile devices to read—it
Fully Meets the user need.
User Intent: Find the
population of New York City
back in 2012.
The result block displays the
complete and correct answer
prominently in the result block,
Query: [what is the weather
in a way that is easy for users
forecast for today]
on mobile devices to read—it
Fully Meets the user need.
User Location:
Mountain View, California
Remember that we consider
weather queries, like this one, to
User Intent: Find weather
be a Know Simple query for
forecast information for the
mobile phone users.
current day in Mountain View,
California.
Note: Assume the result shows
current information for users.
The result block displays the
complete and correct answer
Query: [london time]
prominently in the result block,
in a way that is easy for users
User Location: New York,
on mobile devices to read—it
New York
Fully Meets the user need.
User Intent: Find the current
Note: Assume that the result
time in London.
shows current information for
users.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
Query: [who is the chancellor
of germany]
The result block displays the
complete and correct answer
User Location: New York,
prominently in the result block,
New York
in a way that is easy for users
on mobile devices to read—it
User Intent: Find the name
Fully Meets the user need.
of the current Chancellor of
Germany.
Query: [chevron at shoreline
and middlefield]
The intent is to visit the specific
User Location: Mountain
gas station specified by the
View, California
user. This result block is for the
specified Chevron location, with
User Intent: Find the specific
information to visit this location
gas station specified by the
in person.
user in order to visit the
location in person.
The result has exactly what the
Query: [decemberists crane
user wants, displaying the lyrics
wife 3 lyrics]
to the specified song clearly and
completely inside the result
User Location: Long Beach,
block. The user does not need
California
to click to a new page to see the
complete lyrics for this song.
User Intent: See the lyrics to
The Decemberists song
Note: The lyrics posted on
called “Crane Wife 3.”
Google Play are licensed.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
The intent is to find gas stations
near the specific user location,
represented by the blue dot on
the map.
This result block has a very
satisfying list of nearby, popular,
and prominent options within
one mile of the specific location.
Query: [gas stations near
This kind of block is especially
me]
helpful for users who want to
visit the business in person.
User Location: Mountain
View, California
This result would be very
convenient for mobile users who
User Intent: Find gas
need gas immediately,
stations near the user
especially for those who are
location. Note that this may
driving and cannot easily use
be an urgent query.
their phone.
Note: A range is included
because some users would be
fully satisfied with these
selections, while some users
would want more information
(e.g., gas prices, hours, distance
from location, longer list of
options).
The intent is to find coffee shops
near the specific user location,
represented by the blue dot on
the map.
This result block has a very
satisfying list of nearby, popular,
and prominent options within a
few miles of the specific
Query: [nearby coffee shops]
location. This kind of block is
especially helpful for users who
User Location: Mountain
want to visit the business in
View, California
person. Note that these blocks
are interactive—clicking on a
User Intent: Find coffee
coffee shop will give options to
shops near the user location.
call the business, get directions,
read reviews, etc.
Note: A range is included
because some users would be
fully satisfied with these
selections, while some users
would want more information
(e.g., hours, distance from
location, longer list of options).
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fully Meets Explanation
This block contains a map with
the queried address, link to get
directions, and specifies the
landmark at the well-known
address on the map (“The White
House”).
Query: [1600 pennsylvania
It’s not unusual to search for an
ave washington dc]
address (or business) that is far
from the user location. Here,
User Location: Bakersville,
the user has explicitly asked for
California
a specific address in a far away
place, and this result is very
User Intent: Find a map,
satisfying. For a query this
directions, information about
specific, the user location does
what is located at this
not change the rating.
address, etc.
Note: A range is included
because some users would be
fully satisfied with this result,
while some users would want
more information (e.g., photos, a
brief description).
This block contains a map, link
to get directions, departure
times for the multiple train lines
Query: [metro center station]
that operate at this station, link
to a detailed schedule (i.e., the
User Location: Adams
“Departure board”), and an
Morgan, Washington D.C.
option to see more information.
User Intent: The user wants
Since the user is located in the
to see a map, schedule,
same city as the station, the
transfer options, and/or other
information in this block is highly
train information for the Metro
satisfying.
Center station, given that the
user is close to the queried
Note: A range is included
station.
because some users would be
fully satisfied with this result,
while some users may want
more information (e.g., nearby
attractions, ticket prices).
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13.2.2 Examples of Queries that Cannot Have Fully Meets Results
There are some queries that cannot have a Fully Meets result. Here are some examples.
Type of Query
Example
No Fully Meets Result: Explanation
This is a broad informational query. Knitting
is an activity anyone can do and that anyone
can create a website for. Different users
may want different types of content: videos,
[knitting]
instructions, patterns, etc. There is no one
Broad queries where no
official source for knitting information and no
single result could fully
one result could satisfy most users.
satisfy all users
Therefore, no Fully Meets result is possible
for this query.
Famous names
This is a broad informational query and it is
impossible to know exactly what the user is
e.g., [barack obama]
looking for.
There is no dominant interpretation for this
query. The following entities are all common
interpretations: Americans with Disabilities
Act, American Dental Association, and
[ada]
American Diabetes Association. While each
interpretation has an official homepage,
none is Fully Meets since there is no
dominant interpretation.
Ambiguous queries
Queries for people’s names can be tricky.
without a clear user intent
Many or most people queries do not have a
or dominant interpretation
dominant interpretation. Even unusual
sounding name queries may not have a
Non-famous people names
dominant interpretation. For example, the
queries [sam wen], [tran nguyen], and [david
e.g., [sam wen]
mease] can have no Fully Meets result
because there are multiple people with each
of these names, and it is not clear that most
users are looking for any one particular
individual.
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13.3 Highly Meets (HM)
A rating of Highly Meets is assigned to results that meet the needs of many or most users. Highly Meets results are
highly satisfying and a good “fit” for the query. In addition, they often have some or all of the following characteristics: high
quality, authoritative, entertaining, and/or recent (e.g., breaking news on a topic).
In order to receive a Highly Meets rating, information pages such as encyclopedia articles and news articles must be
accurate and highly credible. Highly Meets medical and scientific information pages must represent well-established
scientific/medical consensus unless the user is clearly seeking an alternative viewpoint. For all information pages, you
must check for accuracy and confirm that the information is supported by expert consensus where such consensus exists.
A query can have many Highly Meets results.
Have high standards for the Highly Meets rating. This is especially important for queries with many on-topic results.
13.3.1 Examples of Highly Meets (HM) Result Blocks
Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
This result shows a complete list
Query: [trader joes]
of all three locations in the
Charlotte area, with information
User Location: Charlotte,
that is especially helpful for users
North Carolina
who want to visit the store.
User Intent: There are two
Note: This result block is not
possible user intents: most
Fully Meets because users who
users probably want to
want to go to the website to see
visit a nearby location or
coupons, promotions, etc. would
go to the website.
have to see additional results.
This is the official website for
Query: [trader joes]
Trader Joe’s, which has highly
authoritative information on the
User Location: Charlotte,
businesses’ stores, promotions,
North Carolina
recipes, news, etc.
User Intent: There are two
Note: This result block is not
possible user intents: most
Fully Meets because users who
users probably want to
want information to visit the store
visit a nearby location or
have to do a bit of work to find
go to the website.
that information—it is not
immediately available.
Query: [museum of
modern art]
This is the museum’s official
website and has very helpful
User Location:
information about exhibits,
Manhattan, New York
membership, the store, etc.
User Intent: There are two
Note: This result block is not
possible user intents: most
Fully Meets because users who
users probably want to
want information to visit the
visit the museum (note that
museum have to do a bit of work
the user is located in NYC
to find that information—it is not
where the museum is
immediately available.
located) or go to the
website.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
Query: [museum of
The result block shows
modern art]
information about the museum,
and is especially helpful for users
User Location:
who want to visit the museum.
Manhattan, New York
Note: This result block is not
User Intent: There are two
Fully Meets— even though there
possible user intents: most
is a website link, it is not very
users probably want to
satisfying for users who want to
visit the museum (note that
go to the website because it is
the user is located in NYC
not as informative as a web
where the museum is
search result block with a title,
located) or go to the
snippet, and URL.
website.
The query is the name of a car
dealership in New Jersey, which
is the only dealership with that
name in the user location
Query: [prestige bmw]
(Ramsey, New Jersey). The
result block shows information
User Location:
about the dealership, and is
Ramsey, New Jersey
especially helpful for users who
want to visit the business.
User Intent: There are two
possible user intents: most
Note: This result block is not
users probably want to
Fully Meets— even though there
visit the car dealership or
is a website link, it is not very
go to the website.
satisfying for users who want to
go to the website because it is
not as informative as a web
search result block with a title,
snippet, and URL.
This is the car dealership’s
Query: [prestige bmw]
official website and has very
helpful information about
User Location:
inventory, financing, etc.
Ramsey, New Jersey
Note: This result block is not
User Intent: There are two
Fully Meets because users who
possible user intents: most
want information to visit the
users probably want to
dealership have to do a bit of
visit the car dealership or
work to find that information—it is
go to the website.
not immediately available.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
There is only one library in the
user location (Belmont,
Massachusetts). The result
block shows information about
Query: [belmont library]
the library, and is especially
helpful for users who want to visit
User Location: Belmont,
the location.
Massachusetts
Note: This result block is not
User Intent: Find
Fully Meets— even though there
information about this
is a website link, it is not very
library or go to the website.
satisfying for users who want to
go to the website because it is
not as informative as a web
search result block with a title,
snippet, and URL.
There is only one library in the
user location (Belmont,
California). The result block
shows information about the
Query: [belmont library]
library, and is especially helpful
for users who want to visit the
User Location: Belmont,
location.
California
Note: This result block is not
User Intent: Find
Fully Meets— even though there
information about this
is a website link, it is not very
library or go to the website.
satisfying for users who want to
go to the website because it is
not as informative as a web
search result block with a title,
snippet, and URL.
The user intent is too broad to
have a Fully Meets result.
Query: [decemberists]
However, this is The
Decemberists’ official website
User Location: Long
and has a lot of content including
Beach, California
tour dates, music videos, the
latest album, etc. The result is
User Intent: Learn more
uniquely authoritative and most
about the band, The
users would be very satisfied by
Decemberists.
this website.
The user intent is too broad to
Query: [celine dion]
have a Fully Meets result.
However, this is Celine Dion's
User Location: Bellevue,
official website and has a lot of
Washington
content including recent news,
show information, music, photos,
User Intent: Learn more
videos, etc. The result is uniquely
about the singer Celine
authoritative and most users
Dion.
would be very satisfied by this
website.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
Query: [fear the walking
dead]
The user intent is too broad to
have a Fully Meets result, and
User Location: Mountain
different users may be looking for
View, California
different things.
User Intent:
This interactive block has a large
Find information about the
amount of helpful content for a
TV show (e.g., show
TV show including a summary,
summary, episode guide,
episode and cast information,
cast information,
etc.—this result would be very
streaming options, etc.).
helpful for many or most users.
Query: [manresa reviews]
The LP for this web result has
127 reviews for the restaurant,
User Location: San Jose,
and is easy to use on a mobile
California
phone. The first three reviews
show automatically, and then you
User Intent: Find reviews
can click to see more. This result
for this restaurant located
would be very helpful for many or
in Los Gatos, California.
most users.
Query: [who is the
chancellor of germany]
This is a specific Know Simple
query for the name of the current
User Location: New York,
Chancellor of Germany. While
New York
the answer is in the description of
the web result, it is not displayed
User Intent: The user
prominently in a way that is very
wants to find the name of
easy for mobile users to read.
the current Chancellor of
Germany.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
Query: [broadway tickets]
The LP for this web result offers
many Broadway tickets for sale,
User Location: New York,
from a highly trustworthy source.
New York
While you have to zoom in and
scroll to navigate the site, this
User Intent: Research
result would be very helpful for
prices and/or purchase
many or most users because it is
tickets to a Broadway
so highly trustworthy.
show.
The LP for this mobile-friendly
web result offers many kids
backpacks for sale. The
Query: [kids backpacks]
company is well-known for
manufacturing and selling high
User Location: New York,
quality backpacks for kids of
New York
different ages. There is a lot of
product information and many
User Intent: Research
user reviews for each backpack,
prices and/or purchase
in addition to filter options that
backpacks for kids.
are easy to use on a phone. This
result would be very helpful for
many or most users.
Query: [poison ivy]
The LP for this mobile-friendly
web result is part of an
User Location: Atlanta,
authoritative government website
Georgia
and provides a lot of helpful
information about poison ivy.
User Intent: Find pictures
This result would be very helpful
of poison ivy plants,
for many or most users. A few or
information about how to
some users may wish to see
treat poison ivy, etc.
additional results.
Query: [michael jordan]
The LP of this web result is a
User Location: Boston,
mobile-friendly Wikipedia article
Massachusetts
about Michael Jordan. This
result would be helpful for many
User Intent: Find
or most users.
information, news, images,
etc. about Michael Jordan.
Users are looking for good or
Query: [dance video]
entertaining dance videos and
there are many options online.
User Location: New York,
New York
There are many on-topic results
for this query and this is one very
User Intent: Find a dance
popular video of a comedian
video to watch.
demonstrating dance styles from
previous decades.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
Query: [trestle bridge]
User Location: Colorado
Springs, Colorado
Seeing images of trestle bridges
is very helpful in understanding
User Intent: The user
this type of bridge. In this case,
wants to understand what
“a picture is worth a thousand
a trestle bridge is or learn
words”, meaning that a picture
more information about
may be more helpful than a text
them (e.g., what it looks
description due to the unique
like, how they are built,
design of the bridge.
types of materials,
well-known examples,
etc.).
Query: [purple
coneflowers]
This block contains many helpful
User Location: New York,
images, and the landing page
New York
shows even more images—it
Highly Meets the user intent.
User Intent: Find images
of or information about
purple coneflowers.
Query: [invasive species]
The result block has a good
User Location: St. Louis,
summary of what invasive
Missouri
species are, but some users
would probably want to see more
User Intent: Find more
information like examples,
information about invasive
impact, etc.
species.
For users in Sunnyvale,
California, the query [turmeric]
could have two different
interpretations: a popular
Query: [turmeric]
restaurant named Turmeric or
the spice turmeric. Because the
User Location:
user is located in Sunnyvale,
Sunnyvale, California
many mobile users are probably
looking for the restaurant.
User Intent: Find
However, it is not completely
information about the
clear because some users may
spice or the restaurant in
want to find information about the
Sunnyvale.
spice. This result about the
restaurant has satisfying
information for users who want to
visit —it Highly Meets the most
likely user need.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
Query: [how to get from
Even though the user has to
seattle to xpppzyfii]
re-enter the destination, the
result block recognizes that the
User Location: Seattle,
user was asking for directions
Washington
from Seattle. The user has to
enter the destination manually
User Intent: Get directions
because the name in the query
from Seattle to another
(“xpppzyfii”) is so garbled that
place. Note that the
there is no good guess as to
location in the query
what the user meant.
(“xpppzyfii”) is garbled and
it is impossible to know
Therefore, this block is satisfying
what the user wanted.
because it helps the user correct
(The name was likely
the request and then immediately
mistyped or mistranscribed
get the desired directions.
from a voice query.)
Query: [kristen wiig]
This is a fan site dedicated to
Kristen Wiig. The website has
User Location: New York,
comprehensive info including
New York
over 50,000 pictures and 300
video clips, interviews, articles,
User Intent: Find more
and more. This website Highly
information about the
Meets the need of many or most
actress, comedian, writer,
users.
and producer.
Query: [greek alphabet]
This is a broad query. Different
users may be looking for different
User Location: Albany,
things.
New York
This result shows multiple tables
User Intent: Find historical
of images with the letters in the
information about the
Greek alphabet. This result
Greek alphabet, the
would be helpful for many users.
names of the letters in the
Some users may wish to see
Greek alphabet, images of
additional results.
the letters, etc.
This is a broad query for an
actress. Different users may be
looking for different things.
Query: [jennifer aniston]
This result shows recent news
User Location: Dover,
about Jennifer Aniston. The
Delaware
articles are timely (at the time
this was written) and relatively
User Intent: Find images,
interesting, and not just common
recent news, gossip,
everyday news about the
information, etc. about
actress. Many users would be
Jennifer Aniston.
satisfied with the result and some
users may wish to see more
results.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
This is a broad query for a city.
Different users may be looking
Query: [seattle,
for different things.
washington]
The result contains a wide variety
User Location: Arlington,
of helpful information such as a
Texas
map, weather information,
several points of interest, and
User Intent: Find
has an option to see more
information, news, maps,
information containing nearby
etc. related to Seattle,
events and facts about the city.
Washington.
Moderately Meets+ to Highly
Meets is an appropriate rating for
this result.
This is a broad query for an
Query: [emily blunt]
actress. Different users may be
looking for different things.
User Location: Portland,
Oregon
The result contains a variety of
helpful information such as
User Intent: Find
images, brief biography, recent
biographical information
movies, and an option to see
(e.g., filmography) or
more. Moderately Meets+ to
current news/celebrity
Highly Meets is an appropriate
gossip about Emily Blunt.
rating for this result.
This page provides the
requested lyrics on Coldplay's
official website. Users can
also navigate around the site
Query: [coldplay yellow
to listen to the song, explore
lyrics]
all albums the song appears
on, listen to or view lyrics for
User Location: Billings,
other songs on the same
Montana
album, or learn more about
the artist overall.
User Intent: Find the
lyrics to the song
Additionally, users can trust
“Yellow”, which was
that the lyrics on the LP are
written by the band
100% accurate due to the
Coldplay.
uniquely authoritative nature
of the source, which makes
this result very helpful for
many or most users.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
The LP for this web result
contains authoritative information
Query: [1969 moon
about the Apollo 11 moon landing
landing]
on the official website of NASA,
which was the organization that
User Location: New
oversaw this mission in 1969.
Haven, Connecticut
The MC has a lot of helpful
information and content,
User Intent: Find accurate
including a detailed summary,
and authoritative
video footage, and images of the
information about this
moon landing that users can
historical event.
view and explore. This result
would be very helpful for many or
most users.
This is an informational query on
a fairly broad topic. Different
Query: [stem education]
users may be looking for different
things, yet accuracy and
User Location: Memphis,
credibility of the source are
Tennessee
important.
User Intent: Find
This LP is a news article
information or recent news
published on a reputable news
about education in STEM
website. The MC of the article
fields (i.e., Science,
covers recent efforts to reform
Technology, Engineering,
STEM education in the U.S., and
and Mathematics).
it includes citations from expert
sources. This result would be
helpful for many or most users.
Query: [mentos and coke
death]
This LP is on a well-known
fact-checking and debunking
User Location: Las
website. The page calls this
Vegas, Nevada
story "False", then provides a
credible explanation of how the
User Intent: Find accurate
authors came to that conclusion,
information about a rumor
including history of similar urban
that a mixture of Mentos
legends. This result would be
and Coca-Cola can cause
very helpful for users seeking to
death, which was spread
verify the credibility of this rumor.
on the Internet in 2006.
Query: [pj fleck]
This LP is an opinion piece
User Location:
written by the Editorial Board of
Minneapolis, Minnesota
the largest newspaper in the U.S.
state of Minnesota. The MC of
User Intent: Find
the article expresses
information or recent news
well-informed opinions about
about P.J. Fleck, who had
Fleck's upcoming tenure as head
just become the new head
coach, and it would likely be of
football coach at the
interest to many or most users
University of Minnesota a
when this query was issued.
few days before this
example was written.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Highly Meets Explanation
Query: [batman lego
movie review]
User Location: Orlando,
This LP is an in-depth review of
Florida
the queried movie by a film critic
at a reputable newspaper. This
User Intent: Find reviews
result would be very helpful for
of the 2017 film The LEGO
many or most users.
Batman Movie on credible
news or entertainment
sources.
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13.4 Moderately Meets (MM)
A rating of Moderately Meets is assigned to results that are helpful and satisfying for many users or very satisfying for
some users.
Moderately Meets results have fewer valuable attributes than Highly Meets results. Moderately Meets results should
still “fit” the query, but they might be less comprehensive, less up-to-date, come from a less authoritative source, etc.
Moderately Meets results are not low quality, out-of-date, or inaccurate. Moderately Meets results are generally average
to good.
13.4.1 Examples of Moderately Meets (MM) Result Blocks
Moderately Meets
Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Explanation
The LP for this web result is a
Query: [shutterfly]
high-quality page on
crunchbase.com—a member site
User Location: Boise,
on the TechCrunch
Idaho
network—with a profile of
Shutterfly. The MC has a lot of
User Intent: Go to the
helpful and accurate information
Shutterfly website or find
about the company and is easy
information about the
to read on a mobile device. This
company.
result would be helpful for many
users or very helpful for some.
The LP for this web result
contains information about Tom
Query: [tom cruise]
Cruise, which would be helpful
for many users or very helpful for
User Location:
some users. The photos and
Scottsdale, Arizona
main links can easily be
accessed on a phone.
User Intent: Find
biographical information or
Note that there are many, many
current news/celebrity
pages about Tom Cruise and this
gossip about Tom Cruise.
result is not helpful enough for a
rating of Highly Meets.
Query: [seattle,
This is a broad query for a city.
washington]
Different users may be looking
for different things.
User Location: Denver,
Colorado
The result shows a map of
Seattle, Washington and clicking
User Intent: Find
on the map brings up a more
information, news, maps,
detailed map. This result may be
etc. related to Seattle,
helpful for some users.
Washington.
Query: [city of angels]
This result reflects one of several
possible user intents, as the
User Location:
query is also the name of a
Los Angeles, California
movie, song, musical, and more.
However, since the user location
User Intent: Find
is near the school, this result
information about the
would be very helpful for some
movie, song, musical,
users—specifically, users who
school, or some other
are looking for the school.
entity by this name.
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Moderately Meets
Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Explanation
This is a result to download one
of the YouTube apps. Mobile
Query: [youtube]
users want answers and results
right away and may not be able
User Location: Tucson,
to spend a lot of time
Arizona
downloading and installing apps.
It is possible that users want one
User Intent: Go to the
of the YouTube apps, but it is
YouTube website.
probably not the dominant intent
for mobile users on the go.
Query: [nicaraguan
This result displays the name of
money]
Nicaraguan currency. Some
users may have their need met
User Location: Miami,
by learning the name of the
Florida
currency, but many users may
want images, know the exchange
User Intent: Find out what
rate, etc. This result would be
Nicaraguan currency is
helpful for many users or very
called, what it looks like,
helpful for some users.
the exchange rate, etc.
Query: [where is virginia in
the us]
The description in this result
block may be helpful for users
User Location: Louisville,
who are already familiar with this
Kentucky
area in the United States. Many
or most users would probably
User Intent: Find where
want to see a map or a clearer
the state of Virginia is
description.
located in the U.S.
Query: [every breath you
take lyrics]
The LP for this lyrics website
page has the requested lyrics.
User Location: Fort
There are many lyrics websites
Davis, Texas
on the web and many pages are
not 100% accurate. Moderately
User Intent: Find the lyrics
Meets is an appropriate rating for
to the song “Every Breath
average pages with the
You Take,” which was
requested lyrics.
written by Sting.
Query: [kristen wiig]
This is Kristen Wiig’s official
website, but the only content is
User Location: New York,
links to her talent and PR
New York
agencies, along with a note that
says she is not on any social
User Intent: Find more
networking sites. While this
information about the
information is helpful, many
actress, comedian, writer,
users would want to see more.
and producer.
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13.5 Slightly Meets (SM)
A rating of Slightly Meets is assigned to results that are helpful and satisfying for some or few users. Slightly Meets
results may serve a minor interpretation, be low quality, have stale or outdated information, have some minor
inaccuracies, be too specific, too broad, too niche for the general user population considering the query, etc. to receive a
higher rating.
Important note: On mobile phones, the "cost of a click" is high. Many users decide which result to click or tap on based
on the title of the web result on the search results page. (Note that these titles usually come from webpages.) A result
with a very misleading or exaggerated title should be rated Slightly Meets or lower, due to the poor user experience that
occurs when the landing page does not match the expectation of the user when clicking or tapping on the result.
13.5.1 Examples of Slightly Meets (SM) Result Blocks
Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Slightly Meets Explanation
Query: [britney spears]
The LP of this mobile-friendly
User Location: Baltimore,
web result has a 2006 article
Maryland
about Britney Spears filing for
divorce. This is very old, stale
User Intent: Find
news, making the result helpful
information about Britney
for few users.
Spears (e.g., current
news, pictures).
Query: [honda odyssey]
Although the LP has
comprehensive information from
User Location: Miami,
a reputable source, and is easy
Florida
to use on a mobile device, the
information is about the 2010
User Intent: We will
Honda Odyssey. This
assume that users are
information would be considered
interested in the current
stale for the query today, making
Honda Odyssey model,
this result helpful for some or few
unless specified otherwise.
users.
The LP of this web result is about
Query: [hot dog]
the movie “Hot Dog,” which came
out in 1984 and is a minor
User Location:
interpretation of this query.
Sunnyvale, California
Because this is an unlikely
interpretation, this web result
User Intent: Find
would be helpful for few users,
information about hot
even though the landing page
dogs, such as recipes or
has good content from a
nutrition information.
reputable source, and is easy to
use on a mobile device.
This result provides contact
Query: [motorcycles]
information for one of the two
motorcycle shops in Potsdam,
User Location: Potsdam,
New York. It is possible this
New York
would be helpful for some users,
but many users would be looking
User Intent: Find
for information. Additionally,
information about
there is distracting
motorcycles.
information (a listing for an
insurance agent).
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Slightly Meets Explanation
This is a Wikipedia page that has
Query: [abe lincoln’s
birthdays for all U.S. presidents,
birthday]
including Abraham Lincoln.
However, his birthday is not
User Location: Fort
prominently displayed and it is
Davis, Texas
not obvious that the answer is
there—users have to do some
User Intent: Find this
work and search around on the
specific piece of
page to find the answer, making
information.
SM to SM+ an appropriate rating.
Query: [lack of sex and
The quality of writing in this
problems with my
article, which was created by a
marriage]
person without expertise in
marriage or relationship
User Location: Waco,
counseling, is poor. Even though
Texas
the article is about the query, the
page is low quality and
User Intent: Find help for
untrustworthy. It would be helpful
marital issues.
for few users.
Query: [nail spa]
Burke Williams is a day spa that
offers many treatments like
User Location: San Jose,
massage therapy, skin care, etc.
California
While it does have nail care
options, it is not a dedicated nail
User Intent: Find a nail
spa.
spa in or near San Jose.
Query: [what type of
sharks live in rivers]
This result block does not contain
User Location: Tucson,
enough information to be fully
Arizona
satisfying and mentions only one
type of shark. Most users would
User Intent: Find
need to do further research.
information about what
types of sharks live in
rivers.
The answer in this result block is
really confusing. Even if users
Query: [210 area code]
can figure it out, they would likely
still have to click on the link, or
User Location: Austin,
go to another website, to confirm
Texas
the information.
User Intent: Find what
While there is a map, you would
area uses the 210 area
have to expand or click on it to
code for phone numbers.
see the details, so it is not that
helpful.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Slightly Meets Explanation
Query: [ibm]
User Location: Rockville,
This block contains images of the
Maryland
logo for IBM, but these images
are not particularly helpful for this
User Intent: Go to the IBM
query.
website or find information
about the company.
The title of this article makes it
appear as though the article
Query: [where is nibiru]
describes an impending
catastrophe. Yet, the MC states
User Location: Oklahoma
in its third paragraph that Nibiru
City, Oklahoma
"doesn’t actually exist" and calls
believers in it "conspiracy
User Intent: Find the
theorists". The title contradicts
location of "Nibiru", which
the content of the article, and as
was a fictional planet in the
a result could mislead users who
movie Star Trek Into
don't read the full article.
Darkness, as well as a
pseudoscientific outer
Note: The "cost of a click" is high
planet in the solar system
on mobile phones. Results with
that doesn't actually exist.
very misleading or exaggerated
titles should be rated Slightly
Meets or lower.
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13.6 Fails to Meet (FailsM)
A rating of Fails to Meet should be assigned to results that are helpful and satisfying for no or very few users. Fails to
Meet results are unrelated to the query, factually incorrect (please check for factual accuracy of answers), and/or all or
almost all users would want to see additional results. These results completely fail to meet the user intent, such as a lack
of attention to an aspect of the query (or user location) that is important for satisfying user intent. Fails to Meet may also
be used for results that are extremely low quality, have very stale or outdated information, be nearly impossible to use on
a mobile device, etc.
Fails to Meet should be used for the following types of Lowest Page Quality results:
● Results that harm users (e.g., malicious download pages, "phishing" pages or websites, etc.).
● Pages or websites that misrepresent the website's owner or purpose, such as by impersonating a different site
(e.g., copied logo or branding of an unaffiliated site, URL that mimics another site's name).
● Pages or websites that appear to be deliberate attempts to misinform or deceive users by presenting factually
inaccurate content (e.g., fake product reviews, demonstrably inaccurate news, etc.).
● Pages or websites with factually inaccurate content that can cause harm to users, regardless of their purpose or
intent (e.g., inaccurate medical information; inaccurate information about how to vote, obtain a visa or green card,
pay government taxes, etc.).
The following should also be rated Fails to Meet because they lead to very poor and upsetting user experiences:
● Porn results for non-porn-seeking queries.
● Upsetting or offensive results for queries that are not obviously seeking upsetting or offensive content.
● Pages that directly contradict well-established scientific or medical consensus for queries seeking scientific or
medical information, unless the query indicates the user is seeking an alternative viewpoint.
Pages that directly contradict well-established historical facts (e.g., unsubstantiated conspiracy theories), unless
the query clearly indicates the user is seeking an alternative viewpoint.
13.6.1 Examples of Fails to Meet (FailsM) Result Blocks
Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fails to Meet Explanation
Query: [dogs]
This is a broad informational
User Location: Pittsfield
query for an animal. Different
Charter Township,
users may be looking for different
Michigan
things.
User Intent: Find
This result block shows
information (e.g., pictures,
visit-in-person information for
breeds, training details,
three different dog care providers
etc.) related to dogs.
near the user location. However,
the query is very broad and it is
Note: For this query, it is
unlikely users want to go
very unlikely users want to
anywhere in person.
go anywhere in person.
Query: [mike]
This is a broad query and it is
unclear exactly what the user is
User Location: Eustis,
looking for.
Florida
This result block shows
User Intent: Find
visit-in-person information for two
information about
businesses that contain the
something related to Mike.
name Mike. However, the query
is very broad and it is very
Note: For this query, it is
unlikely these businesses are
unlikely users want to go
what users seek given the query.
anywhere in person.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fails to Meet Explanation
Query: [tampa rays]
User Location: Tampa,
This result block shows
Florida
information to visit a sports card
store in person, which happens
User Intent: Find
to have the baseball team in the
information (e.g., scores,
name. However, remember that
roster, recent news) about
for this query, it is unlikely users
a professional baseball
want to go anywhere in person.
team in Florida called
Tampa Bay Rays.
Note: This business was
fabricated for the purposes of
Note: For this query, it is
this example, and does not exist
unlikely users want to go
in real life.
anywhere in person.
WRAL is a television news
station in North Carolina. Users
want to go to the website or find
Query: [wral]
information about the station.
User Location: Wake
In this example, clicking on the
County, North Carolina
blocks show information about
the businesses’ corporate
User Intent: Go to the
headquarters. Note that
WRAL website or find
television stations (like radio
other information about the
stations, newspapers, etc.)
news station in North
usually have special contact
Carolina.
information for the public that is
different than their corporate
Note: Users generally
headquarter information. Also,
would not go to a news
with the query just being the
station in person.
name of the station, it is very
unlikely that users want this kind
of information.
Query: [texas farm
fertilizer]
This result block shows the
Texas Farm corporate office,
User Location: Dallas,
which is not helpful given the
Texas
user intent—users could not
physically go to the company’s
User Intent: Find
corporate office to buy or learn
information about, or
about the product. Fertilizer is
where to buy, fertilizer from
the kind of product that you
the company Texas Farm.
would have to buy at a store.
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Query and User Intent
Result
Rating
Fails to Meet Explanation
Query: [united 656]
This result shows information for
User Location: Skokie,
a church, an event venue, and
Illinois
the closest airport. However,
users clearly want to know
User Intent: Find
details about a specific flight, and
information about flight
there is absolutely no information
656 operated by United
in the block about the flight. This
Airlines (e.g., whether the
result Fails to Meet the user
flight is on time, what gate
intent.
it is departing from).
Query: [german cars]
This LP is the homepage of
Subaru, a Japanese car
User Location: Toledo,
company, not a German car
Ohio
company.
User Intent: Find
The page completely Fails to
information about German
Meet the user intent and would
cars or go to the official
be helpful for no or very few
homepage of a German
users.
automaker.
Query: [company to get rid
This LP is the homepage of a
of the possum in my attic]
pest control company in
Australia. U.S. users would need
User Location: Naperville,
a U.S. company to take care of
Illinois
this problem. There is a
mismatch between the page and
User Intent: Find a
the locale that makes this result
company to trap and
helpful for no users—it
remove a possum from the
completely Fails to Meet the
attic.
user intent.
Query: [starting jets
quarterback 2001]
Although this is a trustworthy
User Location: Chicago,
website for information about
Illinois
NFL football, this LP does not
contain the information
User Intent: Find the
requested by the user. This
name of the starting
result completely Fails to Meet
quarterback for the New
the user intent.
York Jets football team in
2001.
Query: [navigate to
yellowstone national park]
This web result (the official
homepage of Yellowstone
User Location: Denver,
National Park) completely fails to
Colorado
respond to the specific Device
Action query: to navigate to the
User Intent: Navigate to
park.
Yellowstone National Park