Google says it will make changes to its search engine next year. The display of search results will be affected by the metrics associated with the page experience, of which there are initially three. They measure how quickly the main content of a page loads, how quickly the page responds to a user's first click, and how stable the content is. It means situations where a button on a webpage suddenly changes places, for example when ads load, and causes the user to click on the wrong choice.
The issue was reported by The Verge, among others. The first gauges are the result of the Core Web Vitals project, launched by Google’s Chrome browser team, which consists of a series of different gauges to monitor speed, response, and visual stability. According to Google, the goal is to help webmasters measure the user experience.
As the world’s most popular search engine provider, Google has tremendous power over how different websites gain visibility. Ultimately, it’s about life or death for some pages.
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It is not yet clear how much the upcoming change will affect search results. According to the company, the page experience is just one of hundreds of signals used to organize search results. Google intends to focus on pages that provide the best information, even if the pages may not otherwise be commendable. However, change is something that webmasters need to be prepared for.
- A good page experience does not override the provision of great and relevant content. But in situations where there are multiple pages with similar content, the page experience becomes much more important to appear in search, writes Sowmya Subramanian, Google’s search ecosystem design director.
The Verge sees the risk that as websites begin to follow the metrics chosen by the Chrome team, this could result in diminished support for competing browsers. So far, the threat is likely to be small.