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What is AMP and how does it affect optimization?

6 minutes of reading
What is AMP and how does it affect optimization?
Category SEO

The Accelerated Mobile Pages Project promises to make the internet more mobile-friendly and faster than ever before, but what exactly is AMP? How does it affect optimization? And why should marketers care about it at all? In this post, we’ll explain what it really is, how it works, and why you should optimize your site for it.


Speed as important ranking factor for SEO

Search Engine Optimization is the practice of improving the ranking of a website on search engines. The higher the ranking, the more likely people are to find the site. These days, everyone is always in a hurry. We want things to load faster, whether we’re online shopping or reading the news. And Google knows this. That’s why they take page speed into account when ranking websites in their search engine results pages. In fact, speed is now a official ranking factor for desktop and mobile searches.

Introduction: background of AMP

In October 2015, Google released Accelerated Mobile Pages, an open-source framework that allows publishers to create faster, more responsive mobile web pages. The idea is that by loading pages faster, users will be more likely to stick around and engage with the content. And since engagement is a key ranking factor for Google, it stands to reason that AMP could have a big impact on SEO.

Understanding how search engines work without going into techy details

In order to understand how AMP affects optimization, we first need to understand how search engines work. Search engines are essentially giant databases that store all of the information on the internet. When you type in a query, the search engine looks through all of the websites in its database and tries to find the best match for your query. If it can’t find anything, it may ask other search engines for help. Once it finds what it thinks is the best result, it shows that result on its page at the top of the list.

Why do you need AMP?

If you’re like most people, you want your website to load as quickly as possible. And that’s where AMP comes in. It is a framework that allows you to create fast-loading pages. In fact, pages that are built using AMP can load up to four times faster than regular HTML pages. With this kind of boost, it will be easier for Google and other search engines to find your site. There are also benefits when it comes to traffic and conversions because visitors won’t have to wait so long for the page to load. They’ll be able to get on with their browsing or conversion much more quickly. Plus, they’ll appreciate not having to deal with any ads. On top of all that, there are various apps that work with AMP and make web browsing even better.

Current and future state of AMP

A common misconception about AMP is that Google created it – but this isn’t true. In fact, Google only started supporting the project back in September 2016 after being on board as an advisor since its inception in 2015. If you’re still wondering why anyone would want their pages to be optimized for mobile devices, think about your own browsing habits. Chances are good that if you go from desktop computer to tablet or phone while browsing the same site, you’ll notice some things are easier to access when viewed through a smaller screen rather than the wider monitor.

So what’s the difference between a regular website and an AMP website? Here are a few key differences:

  • AMP pages are designed to be lightweight and load quickly. This means that they’re stripped down to the bare essentials, which can impact both the design and functionality of your site.
  • BIt is typically cached by Google. When you click on an AMP link in search results, you’ll see a cached notification in place of the URL address bar at the top of your browser window.
  • AMP pages are prioritized for speed over everything else, including conversion rates and other metrics.
  • This technology does not support JavaScript.
  • You cannot have deep linking to non-AMP pages from within an AMP page (e.g., clicking on a link within an AMP page takes you out of the page).

How to implement AMP?

In a nutshell:

  1. Create an AMP version of your existing web pages.
  2. Validate that your pages meet the AMP specifications.
  3. Host the AMP files on your own server.
  4. Update your website’s code to link to the pages.
  5. Test everything to make sure it’s working correctly.
  6. Test all internal links from your site and from third-party sites to see if they’re directing users to the right page.
  7. Put tracking codes in place so you can track traffic and engagement on AMP pages separately from other webpages on your site (this is optional).
  8. Add sitelinks to help people find content faster.
  9. When publishing a new post, update your blog settings to indicate which post will be published as an AMP document.
  10. et up distribution channels like social media platforms or e-mail campaigns to direct traffic to specific posts.

Working with Google Search Console to get your site ready for AMP

When you’re ready to make the switch to AMP, the first thing you need to do is sign up for a Google Search Console account. This will allow you to see how your site is performing in search results, as well as submit your AMP pages to Google for indexing. Once this is complete, it’s time to work on getting your images optimized.

Tip: Google suggests shrinking your image file size to less than 100 KB and converting them into .jpg files. You can also optimize them by stripping out unnecessary metadata like location and camera settings that are not relevant to the picture itself. If you’re looking for some help, there are many tools available like TinyPNG or Kraken that can compress and optimize all of your JPEGs at once. Lastly, it’s time to update your HTML markup with directives specific to AMP so that users have an even better experience on mobile devices. Some examples include placing amp-iframe around embedded YouTube videos, adding link tags pointing to full-sized versions of images within articles, and more.

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Last words

AMP is a great way to improve your SEO services. However, it is important to note that AMP is not a cure-all for optimization. There are still many other factors to consider when optimizing your website. In conclusion, AMP can be a helpful tool in your optimization arsenal, but it is not the only tool you should use. While it does provide benefits like increased speed and improved visibility, there are also potential downsides like potential coding issues and restrictions on design choices. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide whether AMP is right for your site.

Aleksandra Pietrzak
Curator at the National Museum in Poznań, graduate of Art History at the Jagiellonian University and Contemporary Art at the Pedagogical University of Krakow, curator of exhibitions and author of scientific and popular texts. A lover of contemporary art, literature and travel.
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