First things first. To fully grasp this update, we need to put it into context. Google, as you know, isn't just about spitting out search results anymore. The tech titan is continuously striving to enhance the overall user experience. In this noble quest, the Page Experience Update is Google's latest step.
This change, rolled out in June 2021, puts an emphasis on the quality of your user's experience on your page. Gone are the days of focusing solely on keywords and links. Now, how your users interact with your website has a direct impact on your SEO ranking. Scary, right? But fear not. We're here to arm you with the knowledge you need to not only survive but to thrive in this new digital landscape.
The update includes factors such as load time, interactivity, and visual stability, wrapped under the acronym Core Web Vitals. Add to these, the mobile-friendly design, safe-browsing, HTTPS, and non-intrusive interstitial guidelines, and you have the full package of the Page Experience signals.
Now, let's slice open the Core Web Vitals. Google has coined three metrics that matter the most for users - Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS). Sounds like alphabet soup, we know, but stay with us here.
LCP measures loading performance. To provide a good user experience, LCP should occur within the first 2.5 seconds of when the page first starts loading. FID measures interactivity. To provide a good user experience, pages should have a FID of less than 100 milliseconds. CLS, on the other hand, measures visual stability. To offer a good user experience, pages should maintain a CLS of less than 0.1.
Remember, these are not random numbers. These metrics directly impact how your users perceive the experience of your website. Low scores might have them clicking away, and we don't want that, do we?
Alright, the update is here, it's real, and it's a bit scary. So how can you make sure your site doesn't just survive but thrives? Take a deep breath. You've got this.
First, measure your page performance using tools like Google's PageSpeed Insights or the Web Vitals extension. These will give you a clear picture of where your website currently stands in terms of these Core Web Vitals.
Second, start optimizing. Work with your developer (or hire one if you don't have one) to begin making changes to your website. This could involve everything from optimizing images to reduce load time, revising the mobile version of your site, or modifying the layout to make it more visually stable.
Lastly, don't stop at optimizing your website. Keep monitoring the performance. SEO isn't a one-time thing. It's a continuous process of optimization, monitoring, and tweaking. And, as always, keep your content relevant, engaging, and high-quality.
In a world where mobile devices outnumber humans, not having a mobile-friendly website is like sailing without a compass. This isn't just us saying it; Google has made it a part of the Page Experience signals too.
A mobile-friendly website is more than just about squeezing your website to fit a smaller screen. It's about optimizing images so they load faster, making buttons big enough for thumbs, ensuring your text is legible on smaller screens, and creating a layout that makes sense on a vertical screen.
We know it sounds like a lot, but here's the thing. Google is looking out for its users, and so should you. More than half of all web traffic now comes from mobile devices. Providing a good mobile experience isn't just good for SEO; it's good for your business.
Another signal in Google's Page Experience update is HTTPS, which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. In simple terms, it's about making your website secure for your users. Google wants to make sure that when users visit a website, their information is safe.
A website that is not secure not only scares away users but also Google's crawlers. An unsecured site can lead to lower SEO rankings or even be completely omitted from search results.
So, how can you ensure your website is secure? That's where SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) comes in. By installing an SSL certificate, your website will move from HTTP to HTTPS. This encryption provides a secure connection between a user's web browser and your website, which ensures all data passed between the two remains private and secure.
Intrusive interstitials, while they might sound like a space-age anomaly, are simply pop-ups that cover the main content of your website. They can be frustrating to users, especially on mobile devices where screen real estate is already limited.
Google, being the user champion it is, has taken a stance against these intrusive interstitials. This doesn't mean you have to remove all pop-ups from your site. But it does mean you need to think carefully about how and when they are used.
The key is to ensure they don't disrupt the user experience. For example, if a pop-up covers the main content as soon as the user lands on a page, it's likely to be considered intrusive. On the other hand, if a pop-up appears after a user has been on your site for a while or has interacted with your content in some way, it may be considered less intrusive.
By now, you've got a solid understanding of Google's Page Experience Update and how it impacts SEO. It's a lot to take in, we get it. And it's more than okay to ask for a little help navigating these new waters.
At Hierographx, we're more than just an SEO company in Michigan. We're committed to helping businesses like yours understand and adapt to the ever-changing landscape of SEO. With a dedicated team of experts, we can help you optimize your site for the Page Experience Update, ensuring your SEO ranking stays strong and your website continues to attract and delight your users.
Don't just weather the storm of the Page Experience Update. Embrace it, ride the wave, and come out stronger on the other side with Hierographx. As your trusted SEO company in Michigan, we are always ready to guide you through the digital terrain. Reach out to us today to learn more about how we can help you. Together, we can chart a course for SEO success in this new era.