SEO is a unique industry, with multiple algorithm updates from Google every year, you have to stay on top of your game to make sure that the websites you manage all meet the standards required to stay at the top of the ranks.
Usually, with an algorithm update, Google gives us little to no warning and search engine specialists are left scurrying to figure out what the latest changes are and how it will impact website ranking.
But earlier this month the search engine giant made a statement about a big update coming in 2021, giving everyone ample time to prepare.
It’s all about Page Experience
This new update is focused entirely on how user-friendly your website is.
User experience is, and should always be, one of the most important aspects of web design. If you have a well-built website that is easy to navigate and enjoyable to use, users will automatically be inclined to spend more time on the site and come back.
In their own words:
“The page experience signal measures aspects of how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page. Optimizing for these factors makes the web more delightful for users across all web browsers and surfaces, and helps sites evolve towards user expectations on mobile. We believe this will contribute to business success on the web as users grow more engaged and can transact with less friction.”
As a way of measuring the page experience, Google has brought out a new set of Core Web Vitals. And if you have been running any PageSpeed Insights tests recently, you will have noticed that those metrics are already being measured and noted on.
What are the Core Web Vitals?
According to Google, the current set of Core Web Vitals are not set in stone, and they will continue to evolve. However, at the moment they are focused on three points - loading time, interactivity and visual stability.
As we can already test for these new metrics, now is a good time to evaluate the performance of some of the top-ranked pages for any website and make sure that the requirements are met. Unfortunately, this will not be a quick or easy fix, as with any update that requires technical website changes. Many factors that might increase on-page user design do in fact impact page speed negatively - so it is a difficult position to be in. Luckily we have some time to prepare, as these aren’t ranking factors yet and it will only start affecting SERPs in 2021.