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Google will factor ‘page experience’ into Search rankings

It won’t require AMP for pages to appear in Top Stories.
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A person holds an iphone showing the app for Google chrome search engine. PA Photo. Picture date: Friday January 3, 2020. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire (Photo by Andrew Matthews/PA Images via Getty Images)
Andrew Matthews - PA Images via Getty Images

Today, Google announced that it plans to add “page experience” to the factors it considers when ranking pages in Search. It will also remove the AMP requirement for stories to be featured in Top Stories on mobile. Google believes the changes will “help make the web better for everyone.”

According to the company, page experience will measure how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page. To determine page experience, Google will consider Core Web Vitals, metrics that measure user experience, as well as existing signals, like mobile-friendliness, safe-browsing and HTTPS-security.

Google says it will still prioritize the best information, and while it’s doing away with the AMP requirement for Top Stories in mobile, it will continue to support the framework and link to AMP pages when they’re available.

“While all of the components of page experience are important, we will prioritize pages with the best information overall, even if some aspects of page experience are subpar. A good page experience doesn’t override having great, relevant content. However, in cases where there are multiple pages that have similar content, page experience becomes much more important for visibility in Search,” Google explained in a blog post.

Google recognizes that the changes might take some getting used to. It says it won’t roll them out before next year, and it will provide at least six months notice. In the meantime, it wants to give developers plenty of time to prepare, and it has updated its developer tools, including Lighthouse and PageSpeed Insights, to help site owners get a head start.

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