Is your eCommerce site ready for Google Core Web Vitals Update 2021?
Not sure? Let’s sort it out together!
I hope, you run your eCommerce business successfully. But, are sure you have a well SEO-optimized website?
To be honest, when’s the last time you checked that everything was working right and you were getting the right results in terms of traffic and online authority?
Currently, many eCommerce websites don’t take SEO seriously. For sure, eCommerce SEO is not easy, and it may take a lot of time and effort to set up. But if set up properly, it will bring you quality traffic that converts.
At MageCloud, while doing hundreds of Magento site audits over the years, we usually come across the same common technical SEO issues over and over again.
Earlier, we created and shared our technical SEO checklist to help you find the SEO errors that hurt your Magento online store and a few tips on how to fix them.
Magento Technical SEO Issues You Shouldn’t Be Ignoring
Today, we want to pay attention to Google Core Web Vitals as they can help improve your website’s ranking in search engines, provide your website more recognition as well as keep your website clean and well-organized, providing a hassle-free user experience.
Seems, now it’s high time to dig deeper and examine Core Web Vitals to understand the importance for your eCommerce business.
So let’s go!
Table of content
First, what even are the Core Web Vitals?
A handful of times each year, Google makes updates to its Core Algorithm. And each of those updates is designed to optimize the experiences of searchers. But such changes can dramatically impact the search engine results page (SERP) and your ranking in the TOP 10 of Google, if you are there.
On May 28, 2020, Google announced something they called Core Web Vitals. Core Web Vitals are the important characteristics you need in your website’s total usage.
Core Web Vitals
is a set of standardized metrics from Google used to measure user experience and improve it.
The concept of judging websites by what a user feels when interacting with a page isn’t new. Google has already been using some page experience signals. These include:
However, these signals couldn’t capture those aspects of UX which relate to web performance. With the roll-out, three new metrics, known as Core Web Vitals, will be combined with the existing UX signals to a unified Page Experience.
These vitals measure your website’s user experience, and there are three main factors Google is looking for: page loading performance, ease of interaction, and visual stability (from a user’s perspective).
Image source: Google
Each of these metrics provides its own perspective on different elements that impact how users interact and engage with a website.
Core Web Vitals offer more opportunities for a rankings boost.
But only if you get it right.
It’s important to remember that these metrics don’t tell the whole story about the user experience on a website, but each metric can be pieced together to help developers troubleshoot in an efficient and methodical way as well as to help site owners identify and fix technical issues across their website.
As user expectations continue to rise to higher and higher standards, most sites are not keeping up. These updates are simply a clear hint to the whole digital community and online business owners particularly, that it’s time to begin prioritizing user experience.
For example, take a look at the screenshot from the PageSpeed Insights report on the Magento website – Christian Louboutin.
As you see, all CWVs on mobile for this prominent store is far from perfection.
Image source: Google
In order to pass Google’s Core Web Vitals, your site must score a “Good” in all these categories: loading speed, responsiveness and visual stability.
If a page does not pass, it risks the ability to be given lower ranking scores than more usable pages.
Seems, your question is:
While original and relevant content will always be stellar for SEO, Google will also be evaluating website performance based on how well users interact with your website.
Actually, the weight of this change will initially be small for all sites but will likely increase over time as more and more websites adopt Google’s best practices for adhering to its Core Web Vitals.
Any business, including yours, that values brand awareness and visibility should care about CWV and optimize the eCommerce store for the upcoming Core Web Vitals update.
That way, you will stay ahead of the competitors.
However, it is important to note that these updates should not dramatically impact your site’s organic visibility it is following SEO best practices. Google highlights that page experience is one of the other 200+ factors that they use to rank websites.
This means that well-written and relevant content is still crucial and your website should provide the best user experience in addition to nice web design and quality content.
Let’s take a look at the three main metrics included in Core Web Vitals to improve your websites today!
Core Web Vitals focuses on loading, interactivity, and visual stability, and here are the three current components of Core Web Vitals consequently:
Ecommerce, both B2B and B2cC, Core web vitals reports come in two segments:
You will get most of such information on the web.dev website.
Core Web Vitals show whether your site is actually usable for visitors. Core Web Vitals could not only influence the position of your online store in search engine results but also prompt weak points really worth fixing.
Thus, eliminating these problems will simultaneously raise your online shop in SERPs and ameliorate other critical metrics: the bounce rate, conversions, and so forth.
Largest Contentful Paint is a Core Web Vitals metric that site owners can use to assess user experience by determining how quickly the biggest piece of content on the page appears on a mobile/desktop screen.
The largest element is usually going to be a featured image or maybe the <h1> tag but could be any of these:
Site owners should aim for LCP within 2.5 seconds of when a page starts loading.
It can be also frustrating when trying to click something and nothing happening on the page.
FID is the time from when a user interacts with your page until the page can respond. You can also think of it as responsiveness. This does not include scroll or zoom.
Not all users will interact with a page, so they may not have an FID value. This is also why lab test tools won’t have value because they’re not interacting with the page. Use Total Blocking Time (TBT) instead.
Developers need to reduce the time users spend waiting for a browser to respond to their input to improve engagement and usability across the site.
Site owners should aim to provide a good user experience with FID below 100 milliseconds.
I believe you will definitely agree that it’s pretty annoying and frustrating when you try to click something on a page that shifts and you end up clicking on something you didn’t intend to.
So, Cumulative Layout Shift is a metric that identifies links or buttons that shift after a web page has loaded, and reflects the level of difficulty users will experience when trying to engage with elements on your site once a page renders. It takes into account the size of the content and the distance it moves.
CLS shows how you can improve usability, drive click-through rates, and improve online sales.
One major issue with the metric is that it continues to measure even after the initial page load. Google is taking feedback on this particular metric, so we’ll likely see some changes to it in the future.
Common causes of CLS include:
Site owners should maintain a CLS of 0.1 or less.
Along with the main metrics listed above, developers can also understand how their code impacts the way users consume content on their site.
So let’s take a quick look at a few other metrics you can use to understand the experience visitors have on your site.
While these metrics are simplified in the Page Performance Score metric, developers can reference scores in each category based on the specific score of 90 (good), 50–90 (needs improvement), and below 50 (poor).
Now, let’s see how you can measure Core Web Vitals to optimize for each vital.
Understanding what makes up your core web vitals and being able to accurately measure these aspects are distinct challenges.
Fortunately, the assessment of Core Web Vitals for any site is not secret knowledge. Conversely, Google explains the essence of Core web vitals indicators, provides free tools to evaluate them and gives helpful advice on coping with the detected troubles.
There are a handful of ways to see if your page is categorized as “poor URLs,” “URLs need improvement,” or “good URL. You can both examine your website and get some advice on how to make improvements.
We’d recommend you to use one of the following (all of them are free):
Image source: Web.dev
These free tools will help provide an excellent starting point for optimizing your core web vitals and will equip you with the knowledge and data required to begin to make improvements.
We anticipate that Google will continue to add elements to its list of page experience factors over time, so if you have not considered evaluating your website’s usability, the time to act is now.
Finally, here is a list of our recommended actions to take:
Before optimizing your website to make it “easier” for Google
In a nutshell, Core Web Vitals produce a report of your website’s performance and provide a useful framework for auditing and improving the overall experience for visitors and boosting ranking on Google.
I believe, now you definitely want to measure your current performance and optimize your platform, if necessary, for your users to have a better experience. And not just for ranking, revenue but to have a useful, usable and enjoyable plus-one website for visitors.
To do that – you should work with your developers.
In case you’re on your own and need help – contact us, we at MageCloud are here for you to help.