AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages. It is a file format that allows to accelerate the visualization of a web page on smartphone or tablet.
This format was created by Google and you can find more information about AMP Project on its official website. It also provides all the technical documentation for its implementation.
Launched at the beginning of 2016, the AMP format is now one of the most important SEO factors for mobile, and is available by default in the new website creation softwares.
Since Google started factoring mobile page loading speed into its search algorithm, AMP optimization is more important than ever before.
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Why should I use this new mobile format?
With the rise of mobile Internet, the consumption of web content has evolved enormously in recent years.
According to some statistics 50% of the searches on the internet are made from mobile and / or tablet. This percentage rises to 60% on weekends. The problem is that 3G and 4G technologies do not allow you to quickly load the contents of a web page.
Do the test! Google has created a tool to test the loading time of a website from mobile. If your website takes more than 8 seconds to load, you can lose that 50% of visits that comes from mobile:
Different studies show the direct impact of loading time on the loss of traffic volume. In short, visitors will leave your website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load.
What exactly is AMP or Accelerated Mobile Pages?
AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a standard open source that aims to allow websites to load faster on mobile devices. AMP allows webmasters to simplify very heavy webs.
In order to effectively execute these AMP pages, a simple HTML version is used, which replaces the voluminous version of the website. This simple line of code allows websites to load faster on smartphones.
The AMP file will be static, meaning that the page can not be adapted according to the behavior of the user.
The technology developed by Google uses an open source framework and therefore can be used by all without restrictions.
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What impact does AMP have on my website?
The best way to answer this question is to test the difference between a page in AMP format and a normal page. Personally we have implemented it in our blog and we have noticed a certain impact:
Impact on the page load
Mainly, the biggest advantage of Accelerated Mobile Pages is the fast loading of web pages.
The main objective of the AMP is to optimize the loading time of web pages. This creates a good user experience and helps to lower the bounce rate on our site.
Impact on search results
Google indicated that it would prioritize the websites that have an AMP version of their pages in the SERPs to provide a better user experience. That is, sites with AMP formats will be better positioned in search results.
In addition, the pages with AMP implemented are highlighted with a small icon in the form of lightning in Google search results (from the mobile).
Impact of AMP on the design of a web page
To accelerate the loading of a website, its CSS (the graphic style of the pages) will be reduced. As a result, the pages will be very simple.
In the same way, the images will only be loaded if the user scrolls down indicating that they want to see more content.
Should I implement Google Accelerated Mobile Pages?
If your site includes a blog or a news section, the answer is YES!
Google promises important benefits:
- Accelerate the loading of your pages.
- Improve the positioning in the SERPs.
- Improves the user experience on mobile devices.
The restrictions of an AMP website are acceptable:
- Weight of the page limited to 50 KB.
- Dynamic elements disabled.
- CSS style very simplified.
Regarding the implementation of Google AMP, you must talk to the webmaster or the agency that carries out the development of your website. The subject can be a little complex for those who do not have technical knowledge and can have a negative impact if things are done badly.
But in case of having a blog / website in WordPress the implementation is much easier: You just have to install a plugin (AMP for WP) and dedicate 10 minutes of your time for the configuration:
What to do before implementing Google AMP?
Your site must be fast and adapted to these new modes of consumption. Various analyzes show that the heaviest elements on a page are the images in more than 60% of cases.
Identify heavy images on your website.
You can download Screaming Frog that will allow you to analyze the first 500 pages of your website for free.
The tool will identify the heaviest pages on your website. And most likely, they are those that contain non-optimized images.
Reduce and optimize the weight of the images.
Once you have detected the heaviest images, you must optimize them without losing quality.
If you don’t have Adobe Photoshop (our top recommendation) here we leave you 2 magical and free tools that will allow you to optimize your images with the best quality / weight ratio.
In case you are a WordPress user, there are plugins to keep reducing your images even more. We use ShortPixel Image Optimizer plugin, which allows you to automatically optimize the images of your website.
Both for e-commerce and personal blogs, I believe that the implementation of Google AMP will be a very important factor in Google’s algorithm. However, this format is not yet in its final stage and will evolve to integrate more and more elements.
This article was originally published at Ganar Dinero Pro