Core Web Vital: The Next Big Things in SEO
Google is known for pushing improvement updates on a faster frequency. With 100+ ranking factors being added every year, it’s a puzzle for most webmasters to understand most of the ranking factors. Google very rarely gives updates that they have made these changes. But on the other side, when they do, they want every webmaster to know about it.
Google encourages people to do those changes to improve the overall user experience. Be it page speed insights to mobile-first indexing, and easy navigation, all these ranking factors are focused on uplifting the overall user experience.
If we observe the available ranking signals closely, we will find that these are all signals that improve using the Internet on a daily basis. Be it how fast does a website load to how quickly can a site get stable when someone clicks on it or how long it takes to become interactive. All these factors help Google to rank a website based on the work done in the user experience are.
This new update— Core Web Vital is also going to be a major ranking factor directly linked to user experience and speed. If your website is already doing excellent in both the department— kudos. But on the other side, if a site has done a poor job in these departments, then this update may hit that site on a serious note.
What exactly Core Web Vitals
Core Web Vital is a major update towards all these signals that are improving the overall user experience considering factors like speed, intrusive interstitials, mobile-friendliness, and more. These UX enhancement factors are not related to the content creation directly but are linked towards how comfortably users can use your site.
This Core Web Vitals update will be more crucial in terms of mobile users because speed is sometimes slightly lower on mobile phones. In short, with Core Web Vitals, Google is measuring how fast your website is performing against various aspects.
If you are wondering Google will pay more focus on the quality of content on this algorithm then it’s not. Google already has dozens of algorithms that check the quality of content and rank the website. But, this will be a dedicated update towards the website’s performance improvement. In general terms, we can say that it’s all about making your website’s first impression good in front of the users and retaining that image.
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Core Web Vitals— Where it will affect the most?
Whenever Google launches a new algorithm or brings out an update, it’s generally applicable to all and it’s the same case with this update also. From standard search results to desktop results and mobile results, all searches will notice an impact. But majorly, this new improvement from Google will impact more on the sites that are appearing in the Google Top Stories.
For those who are not aware — Google Top Stories is a section where Google fetches news from different websites and showcases it in the top story section. Earlier, the integration of AMP was essential for making it into the top stories. However, now the experts are saying that AMP won’t be a requirement anymore. All the sites need to meet all the criteria that can improve speed and overall user experience.
If someone is already having a high-performing site with good speed, and faster stable loadings, they will get direct benefits from it. But, this is not the case with most of the website owners and they need to work on their sites to improve the performance.
Also, Read: SEO Process – A Step By Step Guide
When this Core Web Vital update will happen?
As per the sources, Google is all set to fully roll out this update very soon in 2021 and due to the current outbreak situation, the update has been delayed. As per some industry experts, the update will at least take one to two months from now to get introduced. So we can say that the webmasters have over 50-60 days for getting their sites optimized for this update.
When it comes to the impact on all the websites, just like any other update, it won’t be that massive that it will turn all the things upside down, seriously. It is because Google introduces hundreds of major and minor updates to improve their services and the impact is only noticeable to a few. On this note, let’s have a look at the three core things that every website owner should focus on to keep their site ready:
- Largest contentful paint (LCP)
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
- First input Delay (FID)
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
In simple terms, this thing checks how fast a page of your website loads. This can be influenced by many factors including images, videos, rendering time, and much more. Be it a desktop version or a mobile version, your site needs to perform best in terms of the largest contentful paint. For improving in this area, webmasters need to minify their resources and make sure that the website loads faster.
Cumulative layout shift (CLS)
This is similar to the LCP but with a slight variation. In this criteria, Google basically checks how fast a web page can get stable after it gets visible for the first time. For example— you must have noticed that when we open a website on mobile and try to click immediately on a button but it gets clicked on something else. This thing is measured in the cumulative layout shift. For fixing this, webmasters need to work on their HTML and other coding standards to make sure the code executes in a very stable way.
First input delay (FID)
In this criteria, Google checks how fast your website gets interactive when it’s loaded on a device. How quickly a user can begin using the website without any page reloading or accidental touches. For optimizing this factor, webmasters need to work on optimizing the JS, and other server-side resources.
How to measure your site’s performance
When it comes to gauging the performance of your site, there are a couple of tools that you can use. The first thing to check is your Google Search Console where you will find a lot of insights. In GSC, you will find a lot of insights regarding the indexing issues and performance of pages that are indexed.
The basic thing here is to fix all possible things that are currently visible to you. If you find that there are some redirection issues on your site, you need to fix them as soon as possible. The main concern here is improving the site’s speed and user experience.
Once you fix all the redirections, you will drastically notice the difference and the bounce rate will also reduce in the future. The simplest thing to do is go on PageSpeed Insights and scan your website for all the serious and potential issues.
There are several issues that can be fixed on the go and for some issues, you will need help from developers. PageSpeed Insights is the best and all-rounder tool that every business owner can use and understand what’s wrong with your website.
You can also use the Google Lighthouse tool
Another advanced tool is the Google Lighthouse tool and you can call it an enhanced version of PageSpeed Insights. In Google Lighthouse, you will get all the insights into much more details. All you need to install an extension of Google Lighthouse and scan the site.
Insights from Lighthouse will help you prepare your site for 2021’s Core Web Vital update. One thing you need to take care that the improvements need to be done in the right manner. You will need to take help from developers to get it done for you.
Minification will plan a pivotal role in improving your site’s performance drastically in 2021. As the new update is all about speed and improved user experience, taking the help of a developer and optimizing your site’s performance will define your success.
If we take a quick look into the Core Web Vital, you need to focus on three major aspects— Largest contentful paint, Cumulative layout shift, and First input delay. These three factors will decide the winning opportunity for your business. One thing you need to keep in mind that, this update is not totally about content and overall content quality. It’s all about external things that will improve the user experience and add more value to the visitors.
All in all, we can say that along with quality content, you need to focus on user experience also. When your site will offer the right blend of quality content and user experience, there are high chances of boosting your SEO services.
This new strategy will not only help you get more visitors to your site but also help you retain more customers in the upcoming time. It’s the right time to start acting on it and prepare your business for this update.
So, if your website is performing slower than the standard criteria, you should focus on improving its performance. Once the update will be fully rolled out, you will get the maximum benefits if your site is already thriving on excellent speed and good user experience.