Google’s YMYL & EAT for SEO Explained

A new Google algorithm update called “Helpful Content Update” aims to promote original, high-quality content that meets users’ needs.

Or content created for humans rather than search engines to put in plain English. However, this change will negatively impact content created specifically for ranking purposes.

SEO specialists must understand the site’s industry, audience, and user expectations to determine whether a site is high or low quality.

How do quality signals work?

Google has been running many programs to determine website quality for as long as it existed. One of these, called Quality Rating, consists of thousands of individuals worldwide who regularly review websites and search results.

In a process called grading, Google sends a web page to these people and asks them to complete several tasks. After grading, they will explain why they rated. In these reports, they identify common elements on high-quality sites.

Sites are not judged equally

The quality of your content will vary depending on the industry you represent. Likewise, the health and welfare of users can be affected by content, depending on the industry.

To identify initiatives where content should be held to a higher standard than the rest of the web, Google coined the term YMYL, or Your Money, Your Life.

Qualitative signals?

Quality websites tend to have strong signals of Expertise, Authority, and Trust. A page’s signals are just one of the sources of EAT. They can come from anywhere.

On-page signals

This includes factual, original, insightful content, ad density, content depth, and the absence of spelling errors.

Signs off-page

Off-page signals can be legitimate positive reviews, citations, links from authoritative sources, the author’s credentials, and the company’s reputation.

No-page signals

Additionally, search engines can examine the author’s publishing history, the frequency of published works on the topic, and if the company has a physical location.

Our take on EAT

A successful website has five critical pillars: findability, information architecture, user experience, readability, and content quality. It is easier for users to achieve their goals when all pillars work together.

For YMYL sites to compete, quality signals must be continuously improved. All areas should, however, take heed because YMYL categories will continue to expand. So, brands should focus on creating content that meets their audience’s needs.

Where to get started?

By improving the EAT signals derived from company pages, author pages, product or service pages, blog posts, news pages, and online reviews, you can improve the overall quality of your website.

Need professional help? Let our SEO and Content Strategy teams identify the essential quality signals for your industry and content type.

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