Google’s New Core Web Vitals Update
How long has it been since you evaluated your website’s user experience? Maybe you’ve never done it! Well, it’s definitely time to check in and reassess your site! On May 31, 2021, Google’s new Core Web Vitals update took effect that base’s your website’s success off of your user experience.
In this article, we’ll discuss…
- Google’s New Priorities
- What Is User Experience
- Google’s New Algorithm Changes
- How You Can Improve Your Site
Google is Prioritizing User Experience
In the latest Google algorithm update, Google is going to begin placing a higher priority on websites with strong user experience. You may feel your website already has this, but it’s probably best to take a deep look at what Google’s definition of ‘User Experience’ truly is.
What is User Experience
User experience rankings are based on how well your website viewers interact with your site and your products. With the new Google update, page experience has become an integral part of Google’s ranking algorithm.
In other words, Google’s new ranking system is based on your website’s traffic. If your view count starts to decline, your ranking will as well. Your page experience is Google’s main focus and if you fail to keep your viewers happy, your website ranking is going to fall behind.
Google’s Algorithm Changes as They Pertain to User Experience
Now that Google is going to be basing your website’s rank on user experience, it’s vital that your viewers are happy with your website. When your users aren’t happy, they navigate away and find the next best thing, in other words; your competition.
Here are a number of important elements of your website that you should evaluate and consider improving in order to keep up with Google’s update:
- Safe Browsing – Does your website currently check your page for malware or other harmful content? If it doesn’t, you need it to. Your website needs to protect its viewers in order to keep your ranking. Don’t put your viewers’ information at risk by not taking this extra step!
- HTTPS – Optimize your users’ safety by providing your site with a secure HTTPS connection. A safe HTTPS provides security and trust for your users, letting them know their personal information and credit card info is being encrypted so they feel more secure purchasing from you, and help you to increase your sales.
- Mobile Site Friendliness – Nobody enjoys a slow, glitchy, unclear website on their device. Your site needs to work as well via mobile as it does on a desktop. If glitches cause users to navigate away or close your page, Google will begin to deprioritize you.
- Intrusive Interstitials – If your site features pop-up ads that block the content on your page and create a slow, sticky user experience, your rating is sure to go down, and fast. Keep your website clean and organized. It’s a frustrating experience for the user and definitely not a good way to get on Google’s good side.
These are the only ‘changes’ that Google has suggested as of right now, however, Google has explained that these website specifics will be updated annually. The goal of this new algorithm is to benefit and improve users’ experience, so these suggestions are bound to change and evolve over time and as more research is completed.
How Can You Improve Your User Experience?
If you’re starting to get nervous about your website and its ability to meet the new qualifications; don’t panic – we’ve got you covered.
We’ve compiled a list of tests and tools that Google has provided its users with in order to test your site’s user-friendliness!
- Lighthouse – This tool measures your Core Web Vitals as well as other user experience factors. This tool provides you with an overall score and recommendations on how your website can do better. The best part is, it’s a Chrome extension!
- Chrome DevTools Panel – This tool is a set of extensions you can install via Chrome that are used to measure different factors of your site’s performance. This extension features probably the most helpful tool in the bunch; it can showcase how your site will look and run on a mobile device.
- Security Issues Report – This helpful tool allows you to see how well your site is fitting into Google’s “safe browsing” criteria. This test checks for security issues like malware and any traces of hacked content. This tool could potentially show you a serious security issue your site possesses you didn’t even know about!
- Mobile Friendly Test – This test scores your page based on your mobile performance! It features recommendations and suggestions on how to make your mobile site better!
Create Good Content Over Everything Else
Although it may be tempting to just simplify everything on your website and to fix every little thing these Google-provided tests see an issue with, trust your intuition. Nobody knows your business and website as well as you do, so it’s just as important that you publish good content that benefits and feeds into your business than it is to create user-friendly content.
So, although this Google Core Web Vitals update might be a huge change for some websites, your site still needs to be helpful for your customers! Your site has plenty of time to climb to the top of Google’s list, so don’t get discouraged! User-friendliness is extremely important for any business’s website to succeed, so start making small changes and over time, see how fast your site will jump to the top of Google’s list!
Don’t want to wait? Contact our agency and we can help determine where your website can improve on user-friendliness, SEO, and other metrics to improve your bottom line.