According to Google, a new algorithm update will be making its debut in 2021 that will affect traffic on websites. Site owners will most likely see a decrease in website traffic if they do not comply with Google’s standards of user experience.

The update is known as the Page Experience Algorithm Update and will evaluate how website users feel when navigating a web page, according to Neil Patel.  The Page Experience Algorithm update will rank websites based on how user friendly they are, meaning user-friendly websites will rank higher than those that are not user friendly. Site owners are fortunate to have been given a notice on the future update; thankfully, they have plenty of time to make changes and digest all the new information regarding the Page Experience Algorithm update.

What is Page Experience?

According to an article by Search Engine Land, the purpose of page experience is to sense how a user reacts to any particular web page regarding several factors: how fast a page loads, if it is secure (HTTPS), if it is mobile-friendly, if the user experience is decreased by ads, and if text and media move as a page loads. Google combines these factors to base the new update to focus on metrics concentrating on loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability. These metrics have been combined into what Google calls Core Web Vitals. Google aims to please users and help them to navigate a page safer, quicker, and pop-up free.

Providing a good user experience has always led to higher conversions, and could lead to higher search engine rankings after the Page Experience Algorithm Update.

What are Core Web Vitals?

Google wants to make a lasting impression on users and believes with these three combined metrics (Core Web Vitals) will do just that. Core Web Vitals will help a site owner measure the user experience of individual web pages and thus, their overall website. For many years, SEO Powersuite notes, Google has tested different metrics to identify the experience a user has on a web page. Core Web Vitals consists of three metrics: Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS).

  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) measures the loading speed (performance) of the web page.
  • First Input Delay (FID) measures the interactivity of the user while on the web page.
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) measures the visual stability of the web page.

By ranking websites according to Core Web Vitals, safe browsing, mobile-friendly, and ad-free factors, Google believes users will have a better search experience. Websites, therefore, that provide that experience to users could rank higher in Google search results and outperform competitors.

How will Google rank page experience?

Google wants users to enjoy their search experience while also finding what they are searching for on the internet. Google believes that page experience is important, however, it will rank pages primarily based on content. Google’s goal is to help users locate the information and websites they are searching for while supporting site owners by providing the information and tools they need.

Related: Evaluating page experience for a better web.

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