In 2016, a study by Microsoft concluded that between the years 2000 to 2016, the average person’s attention span had dropped from 12 seconds to 8. Attention span is an important thing for all forms of digital marketing – SEO, social media and paid advertising are dependent on an ROI for money spent. With SEO in particular, if you fail to grab users attention and they bounce back to the search results page, Google notices and looks more favourably on whoever they click next.
Thankfully, the Accelerated Mobile Pages project is here to the rescue! Chances are you have been engaging in AMP search results without realising. You can usually spot them on a mobile search (usually by news sites) with a little lightning bolt next to them.
What Does An Accelerated Mobile Page Do?
If I had to sum it up it would be that it takes a simple and easy approach to mobile web design. Images have reduced resolution and excessive HTML like animated sliders or contact forms are often given the flick. The most important feature of an Accelerate Mobile Page is near instant load times and prioritising loading in the order of what the user needs to see.
With the decline in attention span, combined with potential load times, it is possible to lose half your traffic before they even see your site. Think about a user on a train who keeps losing their signal. They aren’t going to wait around 20 seconds for your page to load when they can instead be playing a game on their phone or retreating to music. People taking peeks at Facebook at work or the line at McDonald’s don’t have the time nor the patience to wait for things to load.
AMP’s are the internet’s solution to impatience.
How Do AMP Pages Affect SEO?
When you create an AMP correctly, Google will be given a citation to the AMP version of your page and host a copy of the AMP on its own server. This means when mobile organic users come to load the page they load the superfast version Google is hosting, but you still get credit for it.
This also means people can get to it from Google even if your site is down. Don’t worry about duplicate content either, the AMP version provides a reverse citation to Google that passes any authority back to the original page.
Additionally, having an AMP can even help you rank better on a desktop! Google recently announced mobile first indexing, which means a solid mobile experience is key to maintaining desktop rankings.
How Do AMP’s Affect Social Media?
Do you have an ongoing blog? Are you struggling to maintain a solid share of users? If you haven’t looked into AMP you are probably doing yourself and all your hard work a disservice.
When you share a page on social media, the platform will send a bot to your site to generate the preview image and text. This bot will also keep an eye out for AMP pages and automatically send mobile users to that version.
What Type Of Page Should Get AMP?
Currently speaking, we would prioritise single purpose pages such as blogs and news articles (news websites are currently the best implementers of AMP). It can be a little tricky converting the rest of a website to AMP but more plugins are becoming available almost daily, especially on WordPress. Some even enable e-commerce functionality. I would then recommend breaking down your site analytics and spot where mobile traffic seriously under-performs. This could be a good start.
If you are running CMS on a company owned platforms such as Wix, Squarespace, BigCommerce or Nero, I would highly advise you reach out to them about building AMP functionality in future updates. They’re on it, but it’s worth your time letting them know you’re waiting for it as well.
It’s worth noting AMP is a relatively new venture and it requires constant monitoring to ensure it stays up to date with recommended guidelines. Not all platforms will allow them either. If you were to look into getting AMP integration to your site I would advise you request to view other examples of AMP pages built by the developer. Google Search Console also has a useful AMP verification tool that will flag errors.
People are impatient, we all are. We’re the result of the high-speed world we live in. Seconds really do matter, and if you’re serious about getting your business seen on mobiles then speak to your web developer today about an Accelerated Mobile Page.