Get AMPed! Why You Should Use Accelerated Mobile Pages
AMP or Accelerated Mobile Pages are the (almost) newest thing from our internet overlords at Google. If you are unfamiliar, AMP is a new open source initiative that strives to turn all web content into inherently mobile optimized pages for quick loading and easy reading on all devices. This is the direction that everything is moving, to smaller faster web pages for a better mobile experience. We see this taking place right now in the world of SEO with the mobile first indexing update by Google and I have a feeling that AMP is going to be a major part of that in the coming future.
How Does AMP Actually Work?
Essentially, AMP is a new set of code that is applied to an existing article written in the standard HTML/CSS model of web development. This basically takes your article, blog, webpage ect and optimizes it for mobile devices by turning them into “reader friendly” pages. These pages take out interactive content and leave only images, text and most importantly…spaces for ads. The goal of this movement is to increase page load speeds while allowing publishers to not lose out on valuable mobile ad revenue. A better mobile experience for users is becoming the goal of almost all web platforms. Recently, Facebook also released it’s own AMP style publishing tool called Facebook Instant Articles, though it is a closed source product.
Why Should I Use AMP On My WordPress Website?
It’s quite simple really, a better mobile experience for visitors. There seems to be a notion going around that AMP pages are for content publishers only, but I dont necessarily agree with this entirely. Yes, AMP pages do offer more pure value to publishers, especially ones who produce a large amount of content to mobile readers like bloggers, sports writers or journalists. However, AMP pages offer value to almost any type of website who values their local market. Odds are you wont want to convert your entire website to AMP (yet!) but converting sections of your website like news, updates or your blogs can really make your website stand out in the eyes of a mobile user. Remember, if you website takes more than 1.5 seconds to load on mobile, over half of all users will hit back and not wait for the page to load. Speed is key!
What Do AMP Pages Actually Look Like?
AMP pages are like a simplified version of your already existing page. The biggest thing they limit are the size of images and the use of interactive elements, neither of which are needed on mobile devices. The goal is to provide a clean, ultra fast user experience while not losing out on the presentation of content. Here is an example video direct from google to show what an AMP experience will be like.
If You Value Local SEO AMP Pages Are For You!
Local SEO and AMP pages compliment each other very well because they have similar goals. Local SEO is derived from many sources but currently the top option is creating keyword rich content with local area identification tags (ex Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill NC) that provides value to a reader. If you have a well built website, that produces great content and targets the local environment, any type of website stands to increase their local traffic. This along with Google’s massive movement toward mobile optimization, starting with AMP pages now for your content pages will likely make you several steps ahead of your local competition. AMP can also indirectly influence where Google places your website in search results. If an AMP gets more clicks and fewer bounces because it’s faster to load, Google determines that the page is valuable to users, and it’s likely to get higher placement in search results.