How Good Is AMP For Your Social Business?

The goal of every business is to cater content on their websites attractively and visually for the users and deliver it to their devices in a swift manner.

Unfortunately, many are fighting a losing battle as the web is getting congested and heavier. The efforts to speed up networks aren’t keeping up while the popularity of mobile phones skyrockets.

Indeed, the world has gone mobile and is continuously evolving. For marketers and business owners, investing in mobile optimization alone will not yield good SEO rankings for their business. Mobile users with lots of data to skim and a short patience will not navigate your content if your interface is too slow, cluttered and not user-friendly.

Google intends to push mobile optimization to its limits, particularly on how it strives to deliver content through mobile devices and reinvigorate the mobile user experience in a much more eloquent fashion.

Enter Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), an open-sourced project which encourages page loading speed in mobile devices with one primary goal – quicker mobile websites. With 2 billion AMP pages from over 900,000 domains as of May 2017, the project is growing on a great scale.

What Is AMP By The Way?

What Is AMP By The Way?

Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP, is a stripped-down version of HTML and streamlined CSS launched by Google way back 2015. Its purpose is to make web pages load as quickly as possible. Google reveals that AMP pages load 15% to 85% faster compared to traditional mobile websites.

AMP allows you to create pages with static content that render quickly through using restricted HTML along with other tools such as an off-the-shelf JavaScript library. Google’s purpose with AMP is to make the web faster for everybody. The technologies and ideas are open sources which everyone can use.

If you’re searching from your smartphone and see the lightning bolt symbol next to a page – that is an AMP article.

AMP has three functions:

  • It blocks components that Google deem as non-essential.
  • It augments traditional HTML to do a few things that are AMP-specific.
  • It utilizes more caching than normal.

The framework of AMP comprises three components that come together to help distribute Accelerated Mobile Pages:

  • AMP HTML. It’s a code markup with specific HTML tags and attributes. It is vital for the identification of elements like texts or images to analyze information to a mobile device.
  • AMP JavaScript. It’s a JavaScript library (amp.js) that regulates extended HTML to work.
  • AMP Cache. It’s a proxy-based content delivery network (CDN) that allows fast website rendering which is a critical element for every AMP technology.
How Does It Work?

Accelerated Mobile Pages uses HTML coding, a web technology that you may already be familiar with, just a lighter version of it. It is essentially the same thing as HTML5 with added restrictions. JavaScript powers the optimization while CSS3 is for styling your site.

When the page appears on a mobile device, it does not come from the user’s server. The user will view a cached version result from Google. In the meantime, the cached version is up to date, and the document is re-requested from the server.

What Does It Mean For Your Business

So, what can AMP do for your business? What’s in it for businesses who adhere to its strict protocol to deliver their content? The answer is instant delivery. The goal of AMP is to provide full content ready for the user within seconds.

Regardless of what business you’re in, the fact remains that mobile internet usage surpassed desktop usage and the gap continues to grow. According to a study conducted by KPCB, an adult US Citizen spends an average of 5.6 hours on mobile media while 2.2 prefer using desktops. On top of this, the demand for instantaneous content is also increasing which applies in particular if you’re trying to market to millennials or the generation after them.

A recent study even reveals that more than half of website visitors spend less than 15 seconds on a site before leaving. AMP helps publishers retain and attract readers on their landing pages and blogs. Google also reveals that 29% of smartphone users leave a website right away if the loading time is too slow or if they can’t find what they’re looking.

It’s Not Just About Speed

Not Just About Speed

Instantaneous loading times could be AMP’s remarkable perks, but that’s not the only advantage. You most probably saw a lot of mobile websites with complicated viewing interface. They hardly fit the frame of your device, and you have to swipe and stretch to find what you are exactly looking.

Then there’s the never-ending struggle with distorted text and images that won’t load at all as well as the annoying pop-up ads. AMP helps solve this problem. AMPS are sleek and clean and devoid of the extras that may interrupt the user. You may have to sacrifice a little creativity for it, but if it keeps potential consumers and users on your page, it may be worth it.

What Are The Benefits That It Holds For Social Business?

No matter who you are, if you have a website and wants to have an attractive mobile version of it, AMP could be your friend. So far, news outlets, blogs, blogger outreach platforms and other content-rich websites are the primary beneficiaries. Many ecommerce sites are starting to take advantage of it as well. Even eBay started using AMP on some of its product pages.

Pages that instantly load could benefit any business that sells products and services online. Some analysts speculate that AMP is Google’s response to Facebook’s Instant Articles, which loads ten times faster compared to mobile web. Whatever the case is, it’s a ranking factor for a website which can affect its organic visibility. Google’s AMP Project is truly a breakthrough in mobile UX.

New York Times, BBC, Sankei, Washington Post and News Corp and more are just some of the large enterprises who support the use of AMP. And technology providers who support AMP are Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, WordPress.com, Adobe Analytics, Chartbeat, and Parse.ly.

AMP comes with great advantages, but we hand-picked the top 7 benefits that it can wield for your business. Check them out below.

It Improves UX (User Experience)

It Improves UX

Mobile friendliness tops the list when it comes to the things Google pays attention and put their efforts. With AMP, one of the added benefits is that pages experience a huge boost in their search rankings. Mobile friendly web pages are reaping the rewards over the last year in the search ranking category, and now AMP pages are great additions with bigger boost.

One of the ways it benefits both the consumer and website owner is through a seamless and hassle-free online experience. The pages load quickly to allow them to access the information in the blink of an eye while the consumer finds the relevant content they are looking for at the top of the search pages.

The website will see more engagement on their pages that will boost their search rankings in return. When a user looks for information on Google’s search page, the results show that AMP-utilized pages have a tiny green lightning bolt symbol to draw the user to a more speedy experience. A win-win situation for everyone!

Provides Quicker Loading Page for Users

Provides Quicker Loading Page for Users

The need for speed these days is growing, especially when it comes to delivering content on a mobile device. It is essential because studies show that mobile users usually turn their back on a website with slow loading time, we’re talking of about an average of 5 seconds. Businesses that adopt AMP can increase the loading speed of their page and increase conversions which also lessens the rate of mobile abandonment.

An average AMP loads 15% to 85% quicker compared to a regular web page. This speed aspect of AMP becomes very popular amongst the Internet marketing fraternity businesses which are adopting it day by day.

Increases Business Profits

There are numerous marketing advantages for the business owners who utilize AMP. Statistics show that 40% of consumers who search for content will leave the page if it doesn’t load within three seconds. It can be problematic for business owners who market via mobile avenues because there are external factors that can slow down the page’s loading time.

A quick AMP loading time means that business owners can minimize their bounce rates as visitors stay on those pages rather than abandon the site. When a visitor visits on the page, it’s an opportunity for the business owner can make use of branding messages and advertising banners that need a click-through to generate revenue. Furthermore, faster page means more visitors, more page views per session and increase social media sharing from the consumers. All of these are advantageous for business owners who want to score as many visitors as possible.

Enhances Visibility for Publishers

The search results for AMP display in green symbols which increase the clarity and improves click through rates as a result. It happens because the results will not only stand out more, but users will chase for AMP pages with quicker loading times. The benefits of AMP, however, don’t just end here.

The SERPs of Google introduce AMP content within visually-imposing carousels which contains large image files. It’s sure to catch the attention of viewers and any content inside these carousels will acquire a significant improvement in traffic. Hence, the faster your page loads, the higher visibility your content gains and the higher you rank in SERP.

It Supports Ads

AMP supports a gamut of ad networks technologies and formats. The intention is to deliver the ads faster while maintaining the quality of the content, make the content look good and draw the attention of viewers. The advertisers can boost their influence and increase their ROI on ad spending as well.

Because AMP is an open source by nature, more than 70 advertising technology providers already integrate with it and still counting. Even the current tags that supported ad server delivers also work in AMP. Ad publishers can monetize the AMP pages the way they monetize HTML pages and can retain a 100% earned revenue since AMP is not an advertising provider.

Improves Search Engine Rankings

Improves Search Engine Rankings

AMP is not an independent ranking factor, but the fact remains that page load speed times and mobile friendliness and are one of the primary ranking factors in Google. As AMP upgrades these two elements, the likelihood of a website developed with AMP to obtain a higher ranking is high.

AMP Visitor Analytics

The need to track the visitor’s behavior is critical nowadays, as internet marketers lay their next moves using the analytics of their visitors’ actions. Fortunately, AMP takes this account into consideration. Publishers may choose from two tags which automatically tracks the visitor data such as new vs. returning, visitor counts, video and link tracking, clicks/conversions and more.

The Downsides of Using AMP

While AMP, in theory, should be a blessing for providers of blogger outreach services, publishers, and content marketers, some aren’t sure if the movement is a good thing for their business. Most of the anxiety stems from two factors:

  • AMP articles load on Google’s network and not on the publisher’s server, if you’re going to check at the URL, they appear to be Google articles.
  • The critics who see Google’s massive impact on the internet are already worrying about another case where everyone feels forced to hand over more control.

Both concerns are reasonable, and depending on what goals you have, there may be enough to stop you from using AMP. With the reality of how people prefer to consume content and Google’s authoritative role in delivering it, skipping AMP could mean dwindling returns on mobile traffic for your site. If you’re a small business, losing in visibility could bring adverse consequences, and you wouldn’t want that.

Are The Benefits Worth The Trade-off?

Now that you know what AMP is all about, the big question is “Should you take advantage of AMP for your website?”

You could benefit from AMP on those pages correctly if you’re running guest posting services and produces article-based contents like news or a blog. However, it’s important that you take note of the tradeoffs. If your mind is more about content rather than its container, then these tradeoffs shouldn’t be a problem to you.

On the other hand, if you have a very brand-specific website or has features that differentiate or define the experience from competition, you’ll need to discuss with your development team in full details about what you can and can’t do with AMP. If you have an ecommerce site or brochure website with standard content, you’ll probably want to take a pass on AMP on those pages, for now.

As I mentioned earlier, faster sites leverage ecommerce conversions, so at some point ecommerce suites with AMP. You can also create a separate version of everything just to be safe, but unless you have unlimited resources for development, the effort isn’t worth the reward.

Takeaway

Takeaway

Google takes a huge leap forward in creating a more productive experience for all through better mobile user engagement combined with faster loading speeds.

Both consumers and business owners are going to reap the huge rewards put in place by the AMP Project. As future developments continue to roll out, the landscape is certainly going to change for the better for mobile web users.

Author’s Bio
Patrick Panuncillon is a seasoned digital marketing practitioner. Passion for his craft led to the establishment of Link Vista Digital Inc., a startup that provides top notch online solutions and digital marketing services. His expertise also extends to content writing and likes to write just about anything related to his field which he contributes to various websites. During his downtime, Patrick travels to different places to look for trends that he can use for business.

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