Tech giant Google announced a new page experience update for the desktop websites and search results, which is expected to roll out fully by March-end.
The page experience update was rolled out on mobile-first. Google confirmed in November 2021 that they would introduce the same update for desktop in February 2022.
According to Google, the page experience update for desktop will be based on the same signals rolled out on mobile, except for mobile-friendliness being a requirement.
The three Core Web Vitals metrics that are being rolled out on desktop are:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
- First Input Delay (FID)
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
Google said they plan to offer further support to site owners by helping them understand how their desktop web pages are performing using a new Search Console report, which will launch before the update for desktop becomes a ranking signal.
New Page Experience Factors for Desktop: What are they?
Page experience is a set of signals that Google uses to determine whether user interaction with a web page surpasses its base objective to provide information.
It uses a set of metrics called Core Web Vitals to assess whether websites deliver an excellent on-page experience, taking into account the following factors:
- Page loading speed
- Layout shift
- Intrusive interstitials
- Whether the site uses HTTPS Usability
The new page experience update contains existing Google ranking factors such as page speed, HTTPS ranking, and the safe browsing penalty while refining metrics around visual stability, load responsiveness and perceived load speed.
To provide a good user experience, Google advises website owners to:
- Secure your site with HTTPS protocol
- Have a page loading speed of no more than 2.5 seconds
- Have a FID of no more than 100 milliseconds
- Have a CLS score of 0.1 at the most
- Remove intrusive interstitials
Although Google is placing more emphasis on enhancing the on-page experience, website owners shouldn’t worry about experiencing any major ranking shifts from this rollout. Google notes: “The page experience update highlights web pages that offer great user experiences, and remains one of the primary ranking factors. As a result, websites generally should not expect drastic changes.” That said, if you’re not already prioritising the factors highlighted in the page experience update, you risk falling lower in search as most are direct ranking signals. Therefore, websites that want to reap the benefits of their marketing efforts should immediately prioritise improving their Core Web Vitals.