Google’s most recent YMYL and EAT algorithm updates ( coined the ‘medic update’ ) struck in August 2018. It severely affected 1000’s of vaping related websites worldwide. This primarily included,
- online vape shops
- vape review websites
- vape forums
- manufacturer sites
Because of this many vaping websites have been struggling including We Vape Mods. We had personally experienced a 50% drop in traffic and multiple high ranking keywords lost to high DA/EAT optimized websites.
What Does YMYL / EAT Stand For?
- YMYL = Your money or your life.
- EAT = Expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness.
“Your money or your life” might sound a bit grim, but essentially it’s any type of content online that could potentially affect a person’s income or health. This Google update was intended to prevent low quality or fake YMYL content from negatively impacting on someone’s life. There are many ways Google decides if a piece of YMYL content is good or bad, but the major factor is the website and to a lesser extent the authors total EAT score.
“Expertise, authoritativeness, trustworthiness” is a bit more in-depth than YMYL. It references to an individual or entire websites authority / trustworthy score. This is judged by the type of content written and the particular author’s expertise. It also factors in,
- certain auxiliary information
- supplementary evidence
- overall website reputation ( DA )
- user usability
- freshness of content
What Vaping Content Is Considered YMYL?
Unfortunately, most of your vaping content will be considered YMYL. This is because vape paraphernalia or even the act of vaping can be potentially harmful. This also applies to online vape shops that have vaping products listed. If the author or overall website has a low EAT score, then their Google rankings will plummet. This means less organic traffic, which in turn will result in lower conversions.
How To Improve My Vaping Websites EAT Score?
1. Add an author page
If your website features a blog, then we suggest implementing an author page to help increase your EAT score. This should include,
- short bio
- full name
- email address
- social media handles
Within your bio try and include evidence of your expertise. Just make sure all the information on your author page is consistent across all online platforms.
It’s important to make sure your new author page is linked on each blog post. It can also be useful having a snippet of your author bio under the article to make it easier for an evaluator to find. If you weren’t aware Google has now enlisted the help of real people to rate websites. So the full search quality evaluator guideline PDF is a must read if you take your EAT score seriously.
2. Add contact information
Another good way to boost your EAT score is by adding easily accessible contact information. Your website should include an
- email address
- phone number
- physical address
This is just another way Google can verify your brand across multiple platforms. It also adds value to the users that visit your website, as they can reach out for further information.
You should also create an about us page that contains a history of the company, team members and any supporting evidence of brand trust, for example;
- testimonials from Google and Facebook
- associated brands and affiliations
You will also need a contact page that allows users an easy way to contact you. It can be handy having an FAQ page as well that can address any affiliations or advertisements that take place on the website.
3. Get an expert
Content written by experts on YMYL topics is preferred by Google. If you’re not an expert, don’t worry. You can always outreach to one. This is a great way to boost your websites EAT score, while also creating new business relationships that can be useful in future endeavors, for example, a backlink.
There are some circumstances that Google will allow everyday knowledge and personal experience content to rank well, but this is usually reserved for an already existing high EAT score website. Make sure you are monitoring any user-generated content like comments or ratings that may tread into YMYL territory. If so, they should be promptly deleted.
4. Cite content
If you don’t have access to an expert, your next best bet is to include multiple citations within your content. This is especially true for anything that is statistically based. It’s a great way to support your articles claims without the hassle of getting in an expert.
So the easiest way I found to cite content is by using Google Scholar. They host hundreds of journals, scientific studies and also articles that can be used to back up your claims. You can even create an alert that will notify you by email of the latest pieces that mention your chosen keywords.
5. Work on a backlink strategy
One of the best things you can do for your websites EAT score is obtaining high quality and relatable backlinks. This is where the real work starts. Creating a backlink strategy and implementing it can take up lots of time and resources, but it will be well worth it in the long run.
With each new backlink to your website, your rankings will increase and so will Googles trust in you. As a result, your EAT and DA scores will increase. There is no quick and easy way to get backlinks. I highly recommend not buying backlinks, as it’s against Google’s search guidelines.
Bad backlinks can negatively affect your rankings and could even see your website removed from Googles index. The correct way is by creating link worthy content or assets that people will find interesting. You can also participate in guest blog posts, submit your website to vaping directories or vaping resource pages.
Comment down below your experiences with the most recent YMYL and EAT updates. We would love to help you out.