Google announced yet another algorithm update in the early morning hours of August 2018. The SEO industry braced for impact because this happens several times a year.

However, they had no idea that something bigger was lurking inside that update. Over the next few weeks, organic rankings for Health and medical websites began to fall at an unprecedented rate.

Thanks to algorithm trackers, SEOs soon identified a pattern indicating that the update had a significant impact on the health niche. 

This update was later dubbed the “Infamous Medic Update.”

With the addition of the term E A T to Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness), It was clear that the new update instructed the algorithm to look for E A T signals before ranking websites in the YMYL category.

Continue reading to learn more about E-A-T and YMYL:

What exactly is E-A-T in SEO?

E-A-T is a term that first appeared in Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines, a 168-page document released by Google to refer to its human quality raters worldwide.

This document is updated regularly to ensure that new concepts are included. One such concept that made its way into the document is E-A-T. After a few mentions in the previous version, E-A-T has its section in the document. It demonstrates Google’s significance. 

What exactly is YMYL SEO?

YMYL is an abbreviation that stands for “Your Money Your Life.”

Finance, Health, and Wellness sites are some of the most common niches that fall under YMYL sites, requiring a unique SEO treatment.

These websites post sensitive information that can directly impact a reader’s finances, happiness, success, or well-being.

That is why Google expects YMYL sites to follow strict quality guidelines, which are measured by algorithms before ranking pages.

Based on Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness signals, the algorithm evaluates the quality of YMYL sites. 

How Can YMYL SEO Help Improve Google E-A-T?

According to our findings, Google’s Medic Algorithm 2018 pulled down websites with low E-A-T signals and gave a gentle push to those that followed it in the rankings.

Websites affected by the Google Medic update did not assist, provided incomplete or uncertain information, or provided misleading information that could harm readers.

It is not to say that all of the sites affected by the Google Medic Update lack quality content.

For example, the update has impacted pages with high-quality content and those that provide users with useful information. Because it appeared on sites with low authority and trust, the content rankings dropped. Furthermore, if it is a medical or financial website, the content must be written by someone with expertise in the field.

If you believe your website was affected by the Google Algorithm update despite publishing high-quality content, here is a list of E-A-T signals to look for.

You can recover from the current Google Algorithm update and protect your website from future algorithm updates by ensuring your website has these quality signals.

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