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What is the Google YMYL Algorithm?

Google’s YMYL algorithm is a factor in determining website rankings. A blog post on the topic of “what is the YMYL algorithm developed by Google and how it affects your ranking” will be discussed here. The goal of this article is to help business owners understand how their website ranks in search results, and why it may not rank as high as they would like. By understanding the factors at play, you can work towards improving your site’s ranking through SEO methods such as keyword research and quality content creation.

The YMYL (your money, your life) algorithm was an update that Google made to its original PageRank system which primarily focused on relevancy for web pages when considering them for search engine indexing purposes.

What is the Google YMYL Algorithm? 

The Google YMYL (Your Money or Your Life) algorithm is a Google quality algorithm that Google uses to determine the quality and validity of a website. It differentiates between low and high-value content and protects users from misinformation, frauds, scams, financial products, etc.

What is the purpose of YMYL?

Google collects Google Quality Rater Guidelines from real people who review Google search results for violations of Google’s webmaster guidelines. It then considers this feedback when crawling websites to provide better Search Engine Optimisation for users.

What does Google classify as a YMYL website? 

A YMYL website is seen by Google as an authoritative source of information. This means if you have built up a website through hard work and Google thinks it is high-quality content, Google will promote your website in Google search results because Google believes it provides value to its users. Essentially a YMYL website is anything that can involve your financial resources or health and wellbeing.

YMYL follows Google quality rater guidelines and

Google’s EAT (Expert, Authoritative and Trustworthy) algorithm. Google gives each YMYL website a rating and Google uses this to rank websites in Google search engine results efficiently and effectively. Google only wants YMYL websites which it considers trustworthy and accurate to show up in Google search results. If you want to learn more about how much Google cares about your money/life you can read this article.

EAT and YMYL go hand in hand.

What are Google’s quality rater guidelines and what do they do?

The Google Quality Rater Guidelines give real people the ability to make Google aware of any Google Search Results Google may have missed. Google is not perfect, therefore Google uses the Google Quality Rater Guidelines to mark websites as high-quality, medium-quality or low-quality based on how it fits Google’s YMYL guidelines. Google also has a section for Google Search Result Annotation which you are unable to access without being signed in to Google Webmaster Tools account.

If your website is deemed by Google as a YMYL website then the quality of content should be of utmost importance. If there has been no evidence that your website follows Google’s YMYL guidelines then the future SEO value of your site will be questionable at best so you need to demonstrate clearly through

These guidelines are Google’s way of helping Google understand what is trying to be achieved with the website. They are also Google’s way of protecting users from misinformation, frauds, scams, financial products etc.

What are the examples of YMYL content?

Some examples of YMYL content are financial information, medical information, legal advice, etc. The idea of YMYL is that if some piece of information on your website contains information that may affect your health, wellbeing and finances then this algorithm comes into play. An example is if you are a doctor and provide medical services or are a financial advisor and provide financial services to families for example.

  • News and current events: politics, business, technology and science etc
  • Civics, government, and law: voting and politics
  • Finance: taxes, retirement planning, investing etc.
  • Shopping: researching products to purchase and comparison shopping
  • Health and safety: advise about medical conditions, medication, hospitals or dangerous activities like extreme sports
  • Groups for people: information grouped based on race, religion, age, nationality etc
  • Other: Fitness, nutrition, choosing a college etc

Let’s explore YMYL examples a little further:

  1. Medical advice for a major health condition. Suggesting things like “eating certain foods that can cure diabetes” or “do this one thing to reverse your cholesterol”.
  2. Financial products such as investing, bank accounts, loans, insurance etc. Content or information such as “Learn how to invest in stocks today” or “choose this high-interest hield bank account”
  3. Legal advice or information about crimes. Content or information such as “How to avoid a manslaughter charge”
  4. Advice about real estate to buy or sell a house. Content or information such as “7 steps to a lower home loan rate”
  5. Educational services like tutoring or education providers that offer college credit courses online or degree programs online. Content or information such as “This is the best university to go to for medicine” 

How do you optimise content for YMYL SEO?

We have found that if the website has BIO pages with each specialist and links out to the universities that they studied at and discusses the positions they have held combined with blog posts that detail their thoughts on certain topics. Links to professional memberships can also help. The Google Quality Rater Guidelines recommend using Schema.org to markup articles with YMYL information. YMYL articles should also be accurately translated into other languages and the Google Translate widget can be used to do this.

So, if you are a website owner or content creator, it is important to ensure that your website is of the highest quality and provides value to your users if you want Google to promote it in its search results.

The Google YMYL algorithm is a Google quality algorithm that Google uses to determine the quality and validity of a website. It differentiates between low-quality content and high-quality content. This is another reason we favour having numerous contextually relevant blog posts and other forms of content on a website to help the user find the necessary information they seek.

How can you improve your ability to rank in the YMYL space?

Google prefers YMYL websites to have a Google Maps listing.

Google likes Google Reviews for YMYL businesses. This helps Google get more information about your service or product and this will encourage Google to rank you higher. What does help is if they can use a keyword in their review such as “best cardiologist I have seen before”. This proves to Google that the doctor is indeed a cardiologist.

Google encourages website owners who offer user-generated content such as blog posts, forums etc to moderate comments so that time is not wasted on having to deal with irrelevant comments from users. 

Google Analytics (GA4) should be implemented properly because it allows Google to track traffic and keyword searches helping them find useful keywords which can create opportunities for building high-quality web pages.

As we’ve explained, Google’s algorithm is constantly evolving to provide the best search results possible. I hope that this article was helpful and provided you with some insight into the Google YMYL algorithm. I don’t think that the EAT and YMYL algorithms are a big deal. Why would you want to be unethical in your marketing methods to the public? All this requires is more resources and proper planning from the SEO and you should be ranking in no time.

If you are interested in improving your ranking on this platform or others, please contact us for a free consultation. We would be happy to help!

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