Did you know Google accounts for over 88% of the global search engine market? - Actually page 1 of Google has a whopping 95% of all website traffic!
“The best place to hide a dead body is page 2 of Google search results.“
Google knows this well, which is why they are constantly improving their algorithm. In fact, there will be one major shift in the way they rank websites in 2021 with User Experience as a key factor: Google Page Experience update will launch in May 2021.
How can Google’s new algorithm changes affect your page rankings?
Google is introducing the new category Core Web Vitals into their metrics called the Google Page Experience. These new elements will start to influence google rankings as of May 2021, which means that now is the time to start adapting your SEO approach!
Core Web Vitals will measure the speed and efficiency of the three following factors that are vital to user experience:
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
First Input Delay (FID)
Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
(don’t worry, we will be explaining what these mean now!)
LCP - Loading
Google will start rating your site based on how quickly your pages load, as well as any visual elements your site includes.
In order to rate highly, Google has deemed that your site should load in under 2.5 seconds. You can discover numerous programmes which can help you identify your page loading speed - we recommend PageSpeed Insights, which is used as part of the Chrome User Experience Report. As long as your website is within the green range (90-100), you will score highly.
FID - Interactivity
Google will rank the interactivity speed of your website. Essentially, this means measuring how long it takes for your site to respond to users actions, for example, ‘clicks’.
Your site will have a good FID score if your site has a response rate of under 100 milliseconds. Again, this can be identified through the above site recommended for LCP rates. This programme will focus on the input delay, but will not provide you with exact times.
CLS - Visual Stability
Google will begin to measure the visual stability of your site. This will attempt to stop those annoying times when you’ve gone to click on something on a page and at the last moment, it moves, taking you to a completely different page than you wanted!
A good CLS rate is considered to stay under 0.1. This is determined by the combination of the impact fraction and the distance fraction (but it’s not really necessary to know about this part). Again (you’ve guessed it!), the programme linked above can help you identify whether your CLS rank is satisfactory.
So, we know what to look for, but how can we prepare our sites for the new ranking elements?
Google has recently released a Core Web Vitals report as a breakdown of all you need to know about the new ranking, giving a glimpse into best practices and ways you can improve your site.
Alternatively, you can leave the hard work to the pros by hiring digital experts who can carefully implement and monitor any changes, so that your website is fully prepared for May 2021.
This is also a great time to revisit other UX aspects of your website. Follow our Instagram page to learn the latest digital tips and tricks to help improve your design and content.
And remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Need to improve your website? Bob’s your uncle.