Page Experience Will Soon Impact Search Rankings

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Page Experience Will Soon Impact Search Rankings

Google will be rolling out a new search algorithm in May 2021.  This new “Page Experience” ranking factor combines metrics from Core Web Vitals with existing criteria, such as load speed and mobile friendliness, as factors for ranking results.
According to in-depth studies and research gathered by Google, users show they prefer sites with a great page experience. For this reason, Google will begin incorporating users page experience as a new ranking signal in their search algorithm.  
Since many site owners are currently focusing on responding to the Covid-19 pandemic, Google is providing advanced notice of the rollout and tools so webmasters and marketers can begin preparing their sites.

A holistic picture of user experience

The new ranking factor will measure different aspects of how users perceive their experience when interacting with a web page.  Google is combining the signals derived from Core Web Vitals with existing Search signals for a total page experience.  This includes mobile-friendliness, safe-browsing, and HTTPS-security, to provide a holistic picture. Google will continue to work on measuring and identifying different aspects of user experience and make yearly updates accordingly.
The new ranking factor will feature these elements:

  • Load Speed (‘Largest Contentful Paint’ factor from Core Web Vitals)
  • Responsiveness (‘First Input Delay’ from Core Web Vitals)
  • Visual Layout Stability (‘Cumulative Layout Shift’ from Core Web Vitals)
  • Mobile Friendly URL
  • Safe and Clean Website Code (Safe Browsing with no Malware)
  • Use of HTTPS Encryption
  • No Intrusive Interstitials

(Source: Google)

What to do now

Now is the time to test the individual factors of the new page experience signal on your website. Focus on the Core Web vitals, since things like mobile friendliness and HTTPS are likely already routine. Take the time to identify load times, interactivity, and visual stability using the Chrome Experience Report and learn what actions need to be taken by accessing the dedicated report in Google Search Console.
Google aims to help people more easily access the information and web pages they’re looking for, and support site owners in providing an experience that users enjoy.
(Source: Search Metrics)

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