YMYL stands for “Your Money or Your Life.” It is a term coined by Google to categorize web pages that could impact a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety. Google holds these pages to a higher standard because of the direct effect they can have on users’ lives.
YMYL content includes medical information, legal advice, news articles, financial advice, online shopping, and anything else that, if presented inaccurately, could negatively affect the user. If your website deals with such topics, you’re managing YMYL content, and it’s essential to understand how Google evaluates these pages.
At the heart of Google’s evaluation lies the E-E-A-T framework, standing for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. E-E-A-T is not a direct ranking factor; instead, it’s a set of guidelines used by Google’s human evaluators to assess the quality of web pages, especially those falling under YMYL.
Expertise refers to the content creator’s knowledge or skills in the relevant field. An expert is not necessarily a certified professional; a person sharing personal experiences could also be considered an expert, depending on the topic.
Authoritativeness concerns the reputation of the website and the content creator. This includes credentials, awards, reviews, and references from other reputable sites.
Trustworthiness, as the name suggests, is about whether users can trust the content and the website. This involves elements like website security, transparent and easy-to-find privacy policies, and the accuracy of the content.
Achieving a high E-E-A-T score is vital for YMYL pages because Google aims to provide users with reliable, helpful, high-quality search results. Therefore, by focusing on E-E-A-T, you can improve the quality of your content and increase your chances of ranking higher in search results.
Tips For Optimizing YMYL Pages:
1. Create High-Quality Content: Ensure your content is accurate, comprehensive, and offers value to your readers. Provide clear and concise information that directly addresses the user’s query.
2. Demonstrate Expertise: If you’re an expert or have access to one, show it. For example, include author bios with relevant credentials and highlight your expertise in the content.
3. Build Your Reputation: Garner positive reviews, win awards, and seek out endorsements. Online reputation management is crucial in demonstrating authoritativeness.
4. Cite Reputable Sources: Link to authoritative sources to support your claims. This not only shows that your content is well-researched but also increases trustworthiness.
Google’s Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines are an excellent resource for further understanding YMYL pages and the E-E-A-T framework.