Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

Why you should be using Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

It seems the past couple of years the hot topic is mobile search but 2017 really is all about mobile. Our obsession with our Smartphones shows no signs of abating, and this ability to search the Internet anytime, anywhere is increasingly important to website users – 71% of Shoppers use smartphones for research in store. According to Google 33% of UK consumers look at their smartphones within 5 minutes of waking.

Google has focused on mobile search for a number of its algorithm updates, having released its first mobile-friendly ranking algorithm in April 2015. What’s more, in November last year, the search giant moved to put mobile search first in its indexing.

However, it’s not enough to attract searchers to visit your website using their mobile device. You need them to stay and then convert – i.e. take a specific action you want, whether that’s contacting your company, filling out a form or making a purchase. Currently 40% of online sales take place on a smartphone or tablet so this is your opportunity to attract more sales.

This is where Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) can help, giving on-the-go users a faster, more streamlined experience.

What is AMP?

AMP is not a ranking change, and you won’t be penalised for not using it. Instead, it’s an open source way of building web pages to increase speed of access, using a new coding language (AMP HTML). Publishers create content that’s optimised for mobile just once – it then loads instantly wherever it’s needed with none of the slow, clunky frustration of a poorly optimised mobile site.

In essence, an AMP is a lightweight version of a web page, with none of the features that can mean a page loads slowly, from cookies to third-party Javascript.
Since Summer 2016, websites which are not news-specific or with free voucher codes have had the chance to display AMP pages in Google’s search results. If there is an AMP version to your pages, Google shows that rather than the mobile or desktop one that would otherwise show up, tagging it with an AMP label and a lightning bolt in a circle.

Generally, AMPs have been welcomed by both site users and owners.

And while there are no additional direct ranking benefits from the likes of Google, AMP pages get the same ranking boost as any mobile-friendly pages. Equally, there are other indirect ranking benefits, such as higher clickthrough rates.

With over 150 million AMP documents indexed in Google’s search results from 150,000 domains, users are likely to increasingly gravitate towards these pages in the future, especially those using ecommerce websites.

Crucially, you don’t have to introduce AMP across your website in one go. Test it out on a few pages, or convert a few sections at a time. Finally, AMPs support a broad range of advertising networks, formats and technologies, and it’s easy to track visitor data.

Talk to us at Front Page Advantage today about how AMPs could enhance the mobile experience for your brand.