Categories: Site speed

Do I need AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)?

I have just taken the plunge into AMP. Im not talking finances or making a noise out of my Gibson. I’m talking AMP as in Accelerated Mobile pages. Basically I took the plunge because it’s a Google initiative and just to see how it performs and look under the hood. However I also believe that there may be marketing opporuntity here.

For a brief background: it was released by Google softly in 2015, more seriously in 2016, didnt gain too much traction in 2017, then at the end of 2018 the first official WordPress plugin was released.

The idea behind AMP was to pander to the chronically impatient, viewing web pages on mobile devices. In essence the idea seemed on the right tram – given the steadily rising population in the aforementioned patience category. However it has been the subject of much debate in the land of web development – probably not something that the average website manager or user would worry about.

On the one hand, AMP can significantly speed up your site on mobile – which has to be good for SEO (right?) On the other hand the tools for it are very limited and you end up with really what can best be described as a site from the late 90’s – minimalism in block form. Far and away different from the snazzy UI/UX that companies just spent a fortune on.

So why did I finally implement AMP? The answer is 3 fold:

Its Google, right

AMP is their baby. There is much speculation on the degree to which it determines search rankings. My guess is that it is a lot more than they are letting on. Moreover – a couple of my sites that were “big tick” for mobile only months ago, are getting error messages from Google search console that they are no longer mobile friendly. I added AMP, and that went away very quickly. The switch over by Google to crawling through a Smartphone has made the bot very dumb and it doesnt render much beside text and basic images – much like the 90’s internet.

Marketing opportunity

This is where it is time for web designers/developers with a solid marketing background (like me!) to shine. As mentoned earlier, it brings websites back to basics. So the opportunity is in bringing yours or your clients brand/offering back to basics. What does the brand do different, how does it matter to the customer, how can you get your message across in a matter of seconds to get the customer to buy. It is a powerful experience to go through – there is absolutely no hiding behind jazzy graphics, animations and other useless marketing puffery. Its exposing your brands soul to the world.

Getting under the hood

I just like to tinker and find out how stuff works.

AMP – why not test?

My advice – after doing your own research, why not test it? So long as it doesnt break the whole site, why not try it on a page (or site) or two. See if there is fundamental difference in site functionality or ranking. Finally run in conjunction with another mobile solution such as Progressive Web Apps

Jon @ Savemi

Savemi

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