As site owners and webmasters, we all need to keep up with Google’s algorithm updates and their page experience update could potentially have a big impact on organic search results.
Google confirmed recently it will start rolling out the page experience update in mid-June (previously May), although it will not play its full role in search rankings until the end of August.
There will also be no hiding from it either, as Google has stated that as the page experience update is introduced there will be visual indicators to show the search results which meet all of their page experience specifications, similar to their mobile-friendly labels.
What is Page Experience?
At SocialB, we are and always have been firm believers in the user experience coming first and being key to the success of a website. Google’s page experience update is akin in its thinking.
Slow load speeds, bad structure and design, security issues, too many pop-ups etc are all frustrating, confusing and results in one thing – potential customers going elsewhere.
A simple way to think about this page experience update is that user-friendly sites will rank higher than sites that aren’t user friendly.
Core Web Vitals Impact
A year ago, Google announced Core Web Vitals, a set of metrics related to speed, responsiveness and visual stability, to help website owners measure user experience. These were in preparation for the now imminent page experience update and search ranking changes which will incorporate these UX-related signals.
Google said, “We will introduce a new signal that combines Core Web Vitals with our existing signals for page experience to provide a holistic picture of the quality of a user’s experience on a web page.”
This Google tool gives site owners a stress-free way to understand the quality of experience they deliver to their users and how they interact with it. Take some time to explore Google’s overview of Core Web Vitals to get an understanding of the metrics Google are using; LCP (Largest Contentful Paint) for speed measurement, CLS (Cumulative Layout Shift) to measure interactivity and FID (First Input Delay) for visual stability to help prevent unexpected movement of page content for the user.
Is Content Still Important?
Content is and always will be king (bet you’ve never heard that before!) But if content is king, then user experience or ‘page experience’ is queen. Your website could have absolutely great SEO friendly, optimised and engaging content, but if it’s slow to load and takes 5 seconds then according to Google the probability of bounce increases to 90%.
Top Tips to Boost your Page Experience Score
A good place to start is undertaking a review of your website and while Google announced this major update back in 2020 if you’ve not got ahead of the game, here’s what should be on your page experience to-do list.
- Optimise for Mobile Search
- Increase Page Speed Load
- Analyse Your Web Design
- Clear Call to Actions
- Utilise Alt Text
- Improve Website Security using HTTPS
None of this is surprising and much is getting back to the basics and putting yourself in your customers’ shoes to ensure a quick, easy and smooth user experience.
Google Search Console New Page Experience Report
You can also view a new Page Experience report in Google Search Console which combines the Core Web Vitals report with other page experience signals. It measures the percentage of URLs on a site offering a good page experience, giving site owners areas that can be improved.
This update has been a year in the making and Google appears to be clear that this is a significant search ranking change. So, ensure your traffic doesn’t take a plunge and get your page experience up to scratch, because if your users love your site, Google wants to make sure that it ranks well.
If you need help with creating a user-friendly and great page experience, then get in touch with our digital team for chat today.