Google Adds User Experience as a Ranking Factor
Posted on Monday, August 17th, 2020 at 9:58 pm
Google has announced a new algorithm, the Google Page Experience update that is set to launch in 2021. The objective of this update is to effectively analyze how web pages perform correlated to how users are experiencing it. Consequential? Most definitely. Reason for concern? Not with Cobalt Digital Marketing by your side.
Even if you don’t have the skills to make your website more user friendly, our McAllen digital marketing agency can help you to develop a fully optimized website that takes user experience (UX) to the next level.
In layman’s terms, if Google’s algorithm determines that users visiting your website are having a subpar experience engaging with your pages, then this can negatively affect your rankings. But since the rollout won’t begin until next year, now is a good time to start preparing for the update.
User Experience a New Google Ranking Factor
Some of the current metrics Google has in place include proactively measuring whether your page loads quickly, how users are guided through a specific page on your website, copy, and content, if your website is mobile-friendly, its security, whether content jumps around while the page loads, and the detection of too many ads.
Google search ranking factors compromise page experience and include several variables. Chief among them are page speed update, the intrusive interstitials penalty, the HTTPS ranking boost, safe browsing penalty, mobile penalty update, along with polishing the metrics concerning speed and usability.
The better these variables perform, the more enjoyable the user experience will be for visitors who come to your website. When these variables perform at an optimal level, they usually result in a higher ranking for pages on your website.
Google measures refinements with a tool they call core web vitals.
Core Web Vitals 101
User-centered metrics consist of real-world core web vitals that evaluate the features of your web pages involving the steadiness of content as it loads, the time it takes, and interactivity.
They fall under three metrics:
- Largest contentful paint – The speed of loading performance that should happen within 2.5 seconds of visitation.
- First input delay – An interactivity measure that should give a good user experience of fewer than 100 milliseconds.
- Cumulative layout shift – A visually appealing metric in which your page should fall below 0.1.
Prepping for the Google Page Experience Update
While the update isn’t going to happen instantly, Google is giving everyone a fair warning that it plans to put a critical emphasis on user experience to judge the content on your pages.
Excellent content on your website will still be imperative when it comes to your SEO ranking on Google. If you’re familiar with the previously mentioned web design jargon, then you should be able to pull off any necessary updates to your page effectively.
However, if you aren’t capable of doing so, teaming up with an experienced, reputable marketing agency would not only be a wise move but a priceless investment.
Industry research and studies have explained just how important great user experience is to website visitation. It’s not alarming to many digital marketing agencies that Google will add user experience to its algorithm. The addition of user experience as a barometer metric comes on the heels of other variables such as mobile-friendliness and load speed in recent years.