Getting Mobile Pages Up to Full Speed
AMP means Accelerated Mobile Pages. AMP is a language that allows mobile devices to more quickly read and display a website. In this mobile-first world, with Google suggesting that over 50% of all searches now take place on mobile devices. With anticipated changes to the search index — pushing mobile first — having your website display well on a smartphone is key. So, if you don’t have them already, should you be thinking about implementing AMP on your website?
Google is pushing mobile as much as they can with changes to the SERP page. With the removal of right-side ads, the desktop version now matches the look and feel of mobile. With last month’s announcement about splitting the search index, Google will push mobile results even harder. So if you’re not already thinking of how best to optimize your website for mobile users, you better start now. Earlier this year a client of ours found that almost all of their organic search traffic dried up because their website was not mobile friendly.
The benefits of adding AMP, in theory, are pretty clear. Google confirmed they will give a ranking boost to sites using Accelerated Mobile Pages. But examples of AMP paying off are not that easy to find. Many publishing or news websites have begun using AMP, as you can see in the image.
This is because, at the moment, AMP doesn’t offer a great number of features. Most AMP sites are fairly simplistic in their structure, with static pages. So if you’re running a news website, like the Guardian, it’s okay. However, if you’re running an eCommerce website with various different plugins or systems, it can quickly become very complicated to implement. If you couple that with other possible issues (like the caching of payment information or customer data on Google’s servers), you can see why it hasn’t yet taken the world by storm.
eBay, however, was one major website to try out AMP, although only on selected pages. They found that users were impressed with the increased loading speed. As of yet, they haven’t reported an increase in purchases because of it.
This itself could be, in part, because even when you see an AMP highlighted link (as in the image above), you are not always directed to an AMP page — the HTML page sometimes being displayed instead. So even when you are using AMP pages, they’re not always being sent to searchers.
One good point to AMP is that it’s easy to install if you’re using a WordPress site. Install the AMP plugin and follow the installation steps. With a little technical know-how, you can create Accelerated Mobile Pages up and running in no time. The AMP project website has a tutorial on where to put the code.
Are Accelerated Mobile Pages Worth It?
The question isn’t so much, is it worth it, but more is it worth it yet. At the moment the limited features available within AMP do make it, well, limited, in its uses. When you couple that with the fact that Google isn’t always serving the page when it’s clicked on, it seems that there’s still a way to go. We anticipate more features to be added to AMP along more pressure to use it especially once the mobile search index goes live.
If your site is fairly simple, or you’re just planning on trying it out on your blog pages, then using Accelerated Mobile Pages now is worth testing. The setup time isn’t terrible and you can see how your traffic increases. Also, you will be ahead of the curve if/ when Google pushes AMP harder.
How can we help?
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