How Does Google AMP Work?

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Internet-connected mobile devices are changing how we view and interact with websites. Some studies suggest that a massive 54.4% of global internet traffic was via a mobile device last year, up almost 10% in 5 years.

In fact, there is a strong likelihood that you are reading this article on a mobile device.

So, it may come as little surprise that Google places huge importance on mobile performance when deciding which websites appear at the top of its search results.

In this guide, we’re going to walk you through what Google AMP is, why it is important for your business, and exactly how it works.

Ready to make your website more user and search engine friendly? Read on!

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What Is Google AMP?

Let’s start with the basics. What does AMP actually stand for?

Accelerated Mobile Pages

AMP is an Open Source Framework that was created in a joint initiative between Google and several other tech companies. It is most commonly related to Google, often called “Google AMP”. The goal of AMP is to help provide website owners with the framework they need to create better user experiences, specifically much quicker load times.

As AMP is open source, it means it can be accessed and used by everyone. This helps it achieve its goal by being readily available to anyone who wants to benefit from the framework.

So, the likelihood is if you want to make your website AMP – you can!

Mobile optimized pages are not the same as an AMP page. Mobile optimized web pages are typically created with Responsive Web Design (RWD) – this means that you have a normal website page that has been created to work well on a mobile device.

On the other hand, an AMP page is a separate webpage, with its own URL, which is lightweight and often changes the layout and flow of the original page to work better on mobile devices.

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Why Is Google AMP Important for My Online Business?

AMP is an important aspect of web design that should be considered by all online business owners. This is for two main reasons.

First is the fact that you simply want to create a better user experience for those who visit your website. Better website load speeds and easier browsing reduce friction and make it more likely that your website visitors will stay on your site and convert.

In fact, some stats show that just a 1-second delay in load time can lead to a reduction in customer satisfaction of 16%. When many websites have upwards of 50% of their visitors coming to them via mobile devices, it’s clear why mobile usability and speed are so important.

The second reason why AMP is so important for your online business is the fact that it’s likely to improve your search engine rankings.

Although Google has denied the fact that using AMP has any direct impact on your potential to rank highly in search results, it has highlighted through its Core Web Vitals metrics that website load speed does have an impact on rankings. So, as AMP makes it easy to increase the load speed of your mobile page it is very likely to positively impact your search engine success.

Google’s search engine exact algorithm is a closely guarded secret and there is no clear evidence that other aspects of AMP will impact search rankings. However, as AMP was created by Google, it is highly likely that there are other best practices included that help to optimize your website for use with search engines.

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Is Google AMP Right for My Online Business?

Google AMP implementation is almost always a great idea for your website. However, there are two scenarios where Google AMP implementation is especially beneficial.

The first scenario where AMP can be a great idea is when you publish lots of “news” type articles. This type of content is usually of the moment, and the speed at which AMP delivers content will make it a lot more easily digestible for your users.

The second scenario is when you run an ecommerce store with multiple product pages. In this case, using AMP can help you deliver product pages much faster, massively reducing the friction in the buying process.

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How Does Google AMP Work?

So, how does AMP actually make load times so fast?

Here is how Google AMP works….

Traditional websites load the various assets and scripts that make them up one after the other, which means you have to wait for each one to load before the next one does.

For those with speedy internet, this seems almost immediate. But for those with slow internet, such as those browsing on a phone with a poor internet connection, it can be slow.

AMP, on the other hand, lets all the assets and scripts load at once, making the load speed practically instant. 

AMP also increases speed by forcing all website elements, such as images, to state their size in the HTML. This allows for static layouts to be used, which means your browser doesn’t have to wait for layouts or elements to download.

Multiple stylesheets can add load time to websites. This is why AMP only allows one on its pages, with a maximum size of 50 KB. This is enough to build fairly complex web pages, but small enough to ensure that CSS is kept clean and in order.

In addition to this, AMP uses several other techniques for drastically increasing load times, such as limiting the fonts that can be used on a page and restricting images and Javascript.

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How to Use Google AMP

So, you may be wondering how to create an AMP page for your business. The steps are simple:

  1. Create an AMP page
  2. Build the page using AMP Google Search Guidelines
  3. Make your new content discoverable by linking pages
  4. Ensure that users can experience the same website as if they were using a desktop or mobile website
  5. Test your page using the AMP test tool
  6. Use the same structured markup across canonical and AMP pages
  7. Apply content best practices

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Google AMP Glossary

AMP Javascript (JS)

AMP Javascript (JS) is an easy-to-use library for fast rendering AMP-HTML. The library contains all of AMP’s best practices and ensures the fast rendering of a page.

AMP HTML

AMP HTML is the same as normal HTML, except with restrictions that ensure reliable performance. The use of special AMP tags in your HTML is what enables you to create an AMP version.

AMP Cache

AMP Cache is a content delivery network that is used for supplying AMP documents. Using HTTP 2.0, it is possible for the AMP Cache to drastically improve page performance when loading JavaScript files, images, and documents.

How Google AMP Works: Summary

It is clear that AMP can be a great option for online businesses that use multiple web pages, such as those with news feeds or ecommerce stores with multiple product pages. The AMP framework provides you with a simple and quick way to create web pages that are awesome on mobile – helping you delight potential customers that visit your site on mobile devices.

FAQs

AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages. AMP is an Open Source Framework that has been created by Google and other tech companies to provide website owners with a way to make dedicated web pages that are super-efficient on mobile devices.
Using Google AMP is beneficial for several reasons. Using it allows pages to be super fast loading, which helps to improve user experience and can limit friction, which is especially beneficial on ecommerce websites. The resulting increase in speed can also help you rank better on search engine results.

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