Google’s Medic Algorithm Update
Posted on 19th December 2018 at 18:04
A large core algorithm update has been rolled out by Google in August 2018, and many are asking for the specifics and details and how this affects their rankings. This has happened because a handful of website owners have reported that the core update brought negative effects to their Search Engine Results Pages, or SERPs. These effects include significant declines in traffic and lowering of rankings.
Dubbed as the Medic Core Update, how can you avoid these reported effects? What is it all about, and what’s with the weird name?
The unusual name of the update comes from the sector it mainly affected, which is the medical niche. SEO Guru Barry Schwartz (the person behind the name of the algorithm update) of SEO Roundtable declared that 41.5% of the affected websites were categorized under the Health sector. 16.0% were e-commerce sites, and 10.8% delved on business. Finance and travel websites also suffered some damage, with 7.3% and 3.5% respectively.
But why did the websites under these particular niches receive impact? It’s because they are part of YMYL.
YMYL sites stands for “Your Money, Your Life” webpages, which contain content that may influence an individual’s happiness, health, safety, or financial stability. Google places more stringent scrutiny to these YMYL pages because the information they carry are evidently crucial and highly important.
The pages are assessed by their PQ, or Page Quality, because one bad blog tip can result to reception of misleading information.
After all, Google doesn’t only check domains – they crawl individual webpages as well. This is why some of your pages rank and show up on SERPs, and some don’t. The PQ of pages and their creators are assessed via E-A-T, or expertise on content, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
YMYL pages should originate from legitimate websites that are assured to be highly-skilled and trustworthy. Due to health-related websites and e-commerce being sites that are not something that should be taken lightly, it’s easy to see why this highlight on YMYL pages affected the mentioned sectors.
How do I maintain SEO visibility for my YMYL business?
Even if your site niche isn’t completely health-related or finance-directed, chances are you have a blog. As you’re interested in SEO, you must consider the factors revolving around the core medic update to take note of what to do better and what to avoid altogether for your rankings.
To maintain your current positions and to ensure visibility, analysis of the E-A-T assessment showed that websites which included author and source citations for every information or article that they release tend to fare better than pages without them. If you’re still unsure how to go about it, go through Google’s Quality Rater guidelines to know what SEO aspects are harming your website.
Ensure that you:
- Information given should be referenced and linked to
- Have a well written about us page
- Have a fully laid out contact us page with all your details
- Show your credibility/qualifications etc.
- Keep building fresh, relevant & quality content
- Review Your Existing Content & refresh if it hasn’t been changed
- Improve site experience by checking your bounce rate of all
- Make sure it’s mobile optimised! (Can't believe we're still telling people to do this...)
Google has been constantly releasing updates ever since blackhat site owners have been abusing and implementing aggressive SEO strategies.
The medic update ensures that the quality of information available on the Internet and accessible via Google is legitimate, true, and authoritative.
Share this post: