Google classifies some websites as “Your Money or Your Life” or YMYL websites. The Google Quality Raters’ Guidelines document states that the YMYL websites are held to a higher standard. That is because Google feels that if YMYL pages could potentially negatively impact a user’s happiness, health, or financial stability.
So if your website is considered a Your Money Or Your Life site, you need to very focused on communicating your professional expertise on your website. If you aren’t proactive about this, you could find your website’s search rankings dropping, your visibility greatly reduced and the business you get from your website could be devastated.
Google had a major algorithm change in August. This update is being called the medic update and it is focused on these issues of YMYL sites and their expertise, authority, and trust.
Here are the types of sites that are considered YMYL websites according to Google
- Shopping or financial transaction pages: webpages that allow users to make purchases, transfer money, pay bills, etc. online (such as online stores and online banking pages).
- Financial information pages: webpages that provide advice or information about investments, taxes, retirement planning, home purchase, paying for college, buying insurance, etc.
- Medical information pages: webpages that provide advice or information about health, drugs, specific diseases or conditions, mental health, nutrition, etc.
- Legal information pages: webpages that provide legal advice or information on topics such as divorce, child custody, creating a will, becoming a citizen, etc.
- News articles or public/official information pages important for having an informed citizenry: webpages that include information about local/state/national government processes, policies, people, and laws; disaster response services; government programs and social services; news about important topics such as international events, business, politics, science, and technology; etc.
- Other: there are many other topics that you may consider YMYL, such as child adoption, car safety information, etc.
So if your business qualifies, in Google’s eyes, as YMYL, you’ll have to take some steps to ensure that you don’t lose traction in the search engine results. Here’s what we recommend.
About Us Page Improvements
Bulk up your about us information to include what makes you an expert in your field. You can mention where you have done public speaking. List your industry awards or other special recognitions or designations. Include any mentions on TV or in publications or on other websites or podcasts.
Mention the number of successful outcomes you have had for clients. For example, if you’re a Family Law Attorney and you have settled 500 cases, that is a great way to show specifics that help show your expertise.
Clearly spell out your degrees and the institutions that granted those degrees.
You should get a little braggy.
Add An Author Block To All Blog Posts
The best strategy for the author block is to take your About Us text and edit it down to about 150 – 250 words. Focus on the things that most enhance your Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness.
Google sees blog posts as pages on your website. You can and should be writing blog posts that are written around targeted keywords. This process will expand your search visibility and help you get more ideal prospects to your website. By adding the author block to all of the blog pages you are helping reinforce what Google wants to see, your expertise.
Add Expertise, Authority and Trust Content On The Home Page
Get all of this expertise and authority on the home page. Pick the things that will most impress your prospects and Google will be fine with that.
If you have a unique designation from an organization or a branch of the government, mention that. But don’t forget to explain why it’s important. Your users and Google will both appreciate the clarification.
So if you saw your website traffic drop dramatically in August and your business falls into one of the YMYL categories, you need to act on these steps noted above as soon as possible. It is possible to recover and possibly even gain more visibility when you give Google what it’s looking for in terms of expertise and authority.
If you are having trouble in this area, please call us for a free site review and 15-minute consultative call at (973) 770-4668 x101.