On May 28, 2020, Google made a game-changing announcement. They are planning to launch a new platform that is solely designed for the purpose of measuring user experience, preferably, how users interact with a website. This new series of metrics is known as Google’s Core Web Vitals. This means if Google measures and notices a poor user experience on your website through the core web vitals, your website may not get the desired rank in Google’s search results. In short, it is known as the Page Experience of Google and is supposed to come live in 2021.
What is page experience?
Google has defined page experience as: “The signal of page experience helps in measuring aspects of the manner in which users perceive the overall experience of interaction with the web page. The optimization for the given factors ensures that the web tends to be more delightful for the end users across major web browsers as well as surfaces. At the same time, it helps sites to evolve towards specific user expectations on high-end mobile.”
In short, Google is interested in the usability of your website. This update determines that websites that are more user-friendly will get a higher rank as compared to the less user-friendly ones. However, there are online digital marketing services that are expecting to notice a drastic change in SEO. The purpose of the metrics of Google’s page experience is to acknowledge the way a user will recognize the experience of a particular page – they will consider how quickly the page loads, whether the page works on HTTP, the ads contained in the page, and whether the content is in motion while the page loads.
Using the metrics clarifying the usability and speed, page experience is determined by various search ranking factors of Google likes updates that are mobile-friendly, updates related to page speed, the interstitial penalty, the HTTPS ranking boost, and safe browsing penalty.
What are core web vitals?
Core web vitals of Google are a set of user-oriented metrics that provides scores on the basis of the page’s loading time, the stability of the content, and interactivity while loading. These metrics can be divided into the following:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – evaluates the time taken to load a page. The LCP of a web page with a good user experience should not take more than 2.5 seconds while it is loading the first page.
- First Input Delay (FID) – computes the range of interactivity. Pages that have less than 100 milliseconds FID are the ones with a better user experience.
- Cumulative Layout (CLS) – assess the visual stability. A web page with a good user experience should not exceed 0.1 CLS.
All these three metrics grouped together are known as page experience. As per Google, page experience is not just a ranking parameter, but each one has its own ranks and weights in the complete Google ranking algorithm.
Factors determining page ranking in Google
The three most vital metrics have been discussed above. Given below are some other factors by which Google ranks each page experience:
- Mobile-friendly – the web page is workable on all mobile devices.
- Safe browsing – the page is devoid of any deceptive or malware content.
- HTTPS – the page is provided over HTTPS, meaning a secured server.
- No intrusive interstitials – easy accessibility of the user on the content of the page.
Preparations for the update
As of now, nothing has been announced by Google. However, they are tentatively planning to go live in 2021. Google promised to inform its users six-months before launching page experience in the market. So, Google is giving us adequate time to prepare ourselves for the new page experience update. Also, keeping in mind the pandemic scenario, Google is perhaps taking time to release the update.
From the very beginning, Google has made it clear that good quality content will always win, despite a poor page experience.
Great content is still supreme. Google made it clear that great content in your web page will still rank highly in Google Search results, despite a poor page experience. “While all of the components of web page experience are important, Google conveys that they will rank pages with the best information overall, even if some aspects of page experience are subpar. A good web page experience doesn’t override having great and relevant content. However, in some cases where there are multiple pages from different domains that have similar content, page experience becomes much more important for visibility in Search,” Google wrote.
You are lucky if you have AMP, as most AMP pages perform well in page experience metrics. After the launch of the page experience, AMP will contest with other pages to reach the top stories section in Google.
So, this year Google is launching the page experience update with a series of new ranking factors. This means you can make use of the various tools provided by Google to get the desired sites. Be aware of Google’s launches as page experience updates can be launched anytime in 2021.