Last year, Google announced a major Page Experience Update that would take effect in May of 2021. This update is all about creating a more positive experience for users by providing the most relevant information in the best possible way. Google defines page experience as “a set of signals that measure how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page beyond its pure information value.” Based on their announcement, we know that this update is going to prioritize all factors that impact the user experience; including mobile-friendliness, browser security (HTTPS), loading time, and more.
Google’s primary objective is to connect users with the most relevant and high-quality sites, which is why it’s critical for your business to prioritize page experience. You’re likely wondering how to prepare for the upcoming Google algorithm update of 2021 and which attributes create a good landing page experience. We’ve created a checklist to help you evaluate the most important factors before the update occurs later this year.
In 2020, a little over half of all web traffic came directly from mobile devices. With the number of mobile-users growing every day, not having a mobile-friendly site is likely to drastically affect your overall ranking score. Making sure that your site is easily accessible on mobile devices is a great place to start when considering the user experience. We recommend using Google’s free Mobile-Friendly Test to determine the current status of your site.
Slow page speed can lead to high bounce rates and can also reduce the amount of time users spend looking at your site. The total amount of time that a user spends on your webpages are a key ranking factor. Slow page speed also impacts the number of pages search engines can crawl on your site. You can evaluate your score using Google’s PageSpeed Insights. We recommend regular checks to find ways that your site’s page speed can be improved.
Having a secure connection is no longer an option if you want to perform well in organic search. Sites that don’t have HTTPS may send a signal to a user’s browser that the content is spammy or unsafe. Plus, making sure your site has an SSL certificate is a plus for Google, because it helps provide protection against possible cyber attacks.
Eliminate Intrusive Interstitials
Ever visit a website with so many pop-ups that you have to leave the page? Intrusive interstitials, like pop-up ads or other forms of spam, make it difficult for viewers to read the on-page content, which negatively impacts the overall user experience.
Core Web Vitals
This is the heartbeat of your website. Your core web vitals indicate your page layout and your site’s usability. Core Web Vitals carry the heaviest weight with regard to your page’s ranking factors. Core Web Vitals are broken down into three key metrics, giving you a score based on your page’s Largest Contentful Paint (load time), First Input Delay (interactivity), and Cumulative Layout Shifts (content stability). There are tools to help with proper measurement and monitoring of your site’s Core Web Vital performance, including PageSpeed Insights, Search Console’s Core Web Vitals, and Chrome’s User Experience Report.
Here are some quick facts about Core Web Vitals:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): This metric measures loading performance. To provide a good user experience, LCP should occur within 2.5 seconds of when the page first starts loading.
- First Input Delay (FID): This metric measures interactivity. To provide a good user experience, sites should strive for an FID of less than 100 milliseconds.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): This metric measures visual stability. To provide a good user experience, sites should aim for a CLS score of less than 0.1.
If you’re still feeling overwhelmed after reading more about the upcoming Page Experience Update, drop us a line. We are experts in SEO with more than a decade of in-depth experience and first-hand knowledge. We can help prepare your site for the upcoming Google algorithm update and so much more. Don’t just take our word for it, read some of the SEO client success stories on our website.