AMPs are the next big boom after the SEO on-set. Google Accelerated Mobile pages are set to break down all hurdles for loading web pages. AMPs are targeted to avoid the loss of customers when they leave the site after long minutes of waiting for the pages to load. Mobilegeddon update from Google created much buzz declaring that the search engines will count mobile friendly pages in its searches. With the latest, Google’s AMP – it has a new standard for HTML programmers to in-built AMP HTML pages for higher web performances. So, let’s start with the basics first, what is AMP, how does one get started with it and how is it astoundingly beneficial for ecommerce brands and marketers to market their pages.
Google AMP: Explained
Google AMP is an Open Source Project designed to help web publishers create mobile-optimized pages. The pages can be loaded instantly on all the devices, Google states that web pages need to run rich content like animations, video and graphics that work with smart ads that load in an instant. Google’s blog post stated, “We also want the same code to work across multiple platforms and devices so that content can appear everywhere in an instant — no matter what type of phone, tablet or mobile device you’re using.”
Google’s goal is to provide best possible mobile experience. Michael Bertini, search marketing expert at iQuanti says, “Google wants to get information to the end user as fast as possible”, “Google doesn’t want the user to have to wait to read or see something.” According to SearchEngineLand.com, Google’s AMP Product Manager Rudy Galfi said that median load time for AMP coded content is 0.7 seconds. The median load time for non-AMP pages stands at 22 seconds, he noted, it takes this time or makes you leave the site. AMP was officially integrated by Google on February 23, 2016 for mobile search results.
Google AMP: How it works
Caching is core to AMP, Galfi said. From SearchEngineLand.com:
“[Galfi] explained that Google AMP cache functions in a similar manner as a content delivery network (CDN), that it is free for anyone to use and that it works on ‘stale-while-revalidate’ model. This model helps make sure the content is always up to date in the cache. The process by which it works is quite simple: When a request is made, the client receives the cached version while the document is requested again from its original server to be updated in the cache.”
AMPs are “completely separate from a typical mobile site,” says Jim Robinson, founder and CEO of ClickSeed, a digital marketing and SEO agency. “Assuming your site has a desktop version, a mobile version and an AMP version, the desktop version will be the canonical (preferred version), and the mobile and AMP versions will each be annotated separately as alternates.” Site publishers can serve their own ads through AMP, “although there are restrictions on sizes and placements,” Robinson says. “Most major publishers serve ads through DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) or OpenX, both of which are compatible with AMP.”
Google AMP: Types of Sites that can use AMP
Ordinarily, AMP is targeted on news stories from online publishers, the content that Google search users see as AMP pages in to mobile search results. AMP is also beneficial for Ecommerce organizations that use AMP results carousel and other components are well-suited too. Take for instance; eBay announced that its AMP mobile shopping experience was live. Overall, 8 million AMP based “browse nodes” are in production. Robinson added that the ability to develop AMP based product pages are most likely to create bigger commercial incentive for websites adopting to the standards.
Trevor Paulsen, product manager with Adobe Analytics states that “AMP is an incredibly important part of a balanced marketing strategy for publishers today, given the project’s close ties with search engine results and advertising impression rates,” he said further that “Adoption has been strong, given the battle for mobile ad dollars and the fact that Google prioritizes AMPs in search results. That being said, Google is interested in keeping people within their ad network, so it will be interesting to see whether ads are more successful on the mobile web or in apps.”
“As with any evolutionary change in the search engines, people need to pay attention to AMP and adjust,” adds Thomas Petty, president and digital marketing trainer with Bay Area Search Engine Academy. “Over time, it will become an influencing factor. Just as Google has been recommending mobile-responsive websites, this is another step in that direction.”
Google AMP: Why was AMP CREATED?
Usually, web surfers need rapid search results, according to Eric Enge, CEO of Digital Marketing Agency, Stone Temple Consulting. It means Google wants to give its users speed to because there is huge competition in today’s world, if they are able to give superior speed to their users for the content being searched, they will win the market share, Enge added. Google also wants its users to stay tuned on mobile pages, Google has over 5 out of the 9 most installed mobile apps even then its market share is less certain there.
Google AMP: Types of Sites that can use AMP
As Richard Gingras, Senior director of news and social products at Google rightly states that AMP won’t directly show you a massive search ranking while talking to AdAge.com. There should be enough of Search engine ranking signals that need to meet satisfying criteria. He further stated that “Speed” matters the most when it comes to search engine ranking. According to Gingras, “If we had two articles that from a signaling perspective scored the same in all other characteristics but for speed, then yes, we will give an emphasis to the one with speed because that is what users find compelling.”
AMP has the power to influence where Google places its search results, Petty says. AMP pages get more clicks and less bounces because they are quicker to load. If Google feels that the page is of high value to users, then it gets higher placement in search results. Google keeps changing its rules to give the best results in terms of searches made. If your website takes too much time to load pages, it may lose out on lots of business. Mobiles have come to be an important aspect in everyone’s lives; most people are using Google to find anything and everything on earth. AMP acts an essential tool that would ensure better rankings and find ability on the web, says Oleg Moskalensky, President of Productive Computer systems, the company that develops IT solutions for smaller businesses. He says, Google shall punish slow loading web content in their rankings, “So even if you do everything you can to improve SEO, without AMP, you’d be potentially spinning your wheels.”
Google AMP: Potential Pitfalls
AMP is a new technology placed by Google and hence it is going to take some time before it becomes too common and people start using it. “It’s harder to implement at first, but tools, plug-ins and add-ons evolve to make it almost automatic,” he says. “Think of where SEO was a few years ago. Manually hand-coding Meta tags and other elements was the norm. Now SEO plug-ins prompt users with exactly what they should do to improve ranking, without having to know SEO.” And an AMP WordPress plug-in “does a pretty good job, and it will evolve over time” to make it simpler for everyone, Petty says.
One hazard with AMP is when users share links to AMP content through a Google search, the links point to Google.com URL rather than taking it content developers site – this was pointed out by Wired.com. It could significantly give negative impact content developers site traffic, states Mike
Kisseberth, Chief Revenue Officer of Digital Content and services firm at Purch stated.
Paulsen says, AMP “creates a potential challenge on the analytics side, as it’s impossible to be 100 percent sure where a publisher’s content will be loaded from, as well as complications with visitor identification due to tight cookie restrictions”.
Google AMP: Role of IT in AMP
AMP Initiatives involves HTML code and Programming where IT department should be involved according to Moskalensky. “IT needs to work with others for content creation and planning, but the actual implementation and maintenance would need to be done by IT either within the company or by a freelance company hired to do the job.” According to Robinson, IT “will likely play a big role in adopting the AMP standard because there are some behind-the-scenes prerequisites they’ll need to help with,” he further says “For example, depending on the chosen configuration, a server admin may need to set up additional sub-domains or install secure certificates. There will likely be some coordination with any CDN vendor. Most of the work can be handled by developers from there, but there’s definitely a bit of technical work involved.”
Google AMP: Is this the Mobile future?
AMPs are yet to grip the whole mobile market. Robinson says, “AMP potentially has big implications for the mobile web, but it all depends on whether it becomes widely adopted as a standard”. He further stated that, “Not everything Google pushes for gains traction. Google pushed for adoption of Authorship markup, for example, which required publishers to implement code changes and encourage their writers to set up and connect Google+ accounts. But Authorship markup is now irrelevant and some publishers feel like they were sent on a wild goose chase.” He said AMP “may stand a better chance at becoming a widely adopted standard since it’s less proprietary than alternatives, like Facebook Instant Articles or Apple News. As a result, publishers may be more willing to develop AMPs. That combined with the resources Google has put into promoting AMP as a new mobile standard mean it should be given a serious look.”