All website owners should be aware of page experience updates for 2021. Understanding the expectations for page experience and making website design and development upgrades around those can help your business reach more people and rank higher on search engines’ results pages. If you’re not familiar with the concept of page experience or aren’t sure where to start, our team at NUVEW can help. Here’s what you should know about the page experience update—
What Is Page Experience?
Page experience is a term that is often used interchangeably with user experience. It essentially refers to a user’s experience of interacting with a web page; for businesses and webpage owners, the object is to optimize websites in order to make the experience better for the user.
It’s not just about being good for the user, though; Google’s search algorithm will also penalize or reward sites based on certain page experience metrics. This means that if you want strong SEO performance, page/user experience needs to be a priority.
Key Updates for Websites
Google updated its page experience core web vitality metrics and recommendations and expectations mid-year 2021. According to the search giant, it plans to “incorporate more page experience signals on a yearly basis to both further align with evolving user expectations and increase the aspects of user experience” that are measurable. With that in mind, here are the three core web vitals that Google is focusing on now related to page experience—
- Loading time. Loading time is an obvious metric that refers to how quickly a page loads after a user clicks on a link or types in a URL. Loading time is incredibly important—if your page takes too long to load, your bounce rate could be very high.
- Interactivity. The second factor that Google considers as a core web vital is interactivity. Interactivity refers to the way that a user interacts with a website, and a website with a better interactivity score is one that includes a variety of elements that can be actively engaged by the user.
- Visual stability. Visual stability can be hard to understand, but essentially it’s exactly what it sounds like. A website’s visual stability score will drop if there are unexpected layout shifts of visible page content.
Tools to Help
If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by the core web vitality metrics listed above, there are a few online tools you can use to help test and improve your website. These include:
- PageSpeed insights – Helps you to understand the load speed of your page.
- Google Lighthouse – Evaluates page performance by simulating various situations and conditions.
- Mobile-friendly test – Determines whether your site is responsive for mobile use.
- Google Search Console – Identifies URLs that perform well and those that need improvement.