Web Vitals is an initiative by Google to provide unified guidance for quality signals that are essential to delivering a great user experience on the web.
This update to Google search will roll out in May 2021 and will combine Core Web Vitals with existing Google search ranking signals.
What are Core Web Vitals?
The Core Web Vitals (abbreviated as CWV) are a set of metrics that Google uses to monitor page speed and the user experience.
Core Web Vitals are the subset of Web Vitals that apply to all web pages, should be measured by all site owners, and will be surfaced across all Google tools. Each of the Core Web Vitals represents a distinct facet of the user experience, is measurable in the field, and reflects the real-world experience of a critical user-centric outcome.
There are three Core Web Vitals, each of which relates to a component of a user’s experience on your page:
(Image Source: Web.dev)
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): measures loading performance. To provide a good user experience, LCP should occur within 2.5 seconds of when the page first starts loading.
- First Input Delay (FID): measures interactivity. To provide a good user experience, pages should have a FID of 100 milliseconds or less.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): measures visual stability. To provide a good user experience, pages should maintain a CLS of 0.1. or less.
As a Publisher what does this mean?
Core Web Vitals will be a key way to measure page performance.
Publishers focused on user experience were always interested in improving their page performance. Now, page performance is also an SEO priority.
Page performance refers to the time required to load a web page on your browser. This could be affected by file size and processing resources both on mobile and desktop browsers.
What Impacts Page Performance?
Anything that you have on your page could impact page performance including text, videos, and images, but also tracking code, ad units — basically any code that renders on the browser on your page could impact page performance.
Apester, similar to other third parties on publisher websites, impacts page performance. We recognize that this a crucial topic for our publisher partners and we have already done incredible work to be ready for this important update.
What we did and how it will help you?
As mentioned above, there are three main metrics that make up Core Web Vitals: Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS), First Input Delay (FID) and Largest Contentful Paint (LCP). For each metric we are focusing on specific optimizations that should improve page performance.
CLS is negatively affected by the following:
- Images without dimensions
- Ads, embeds, and iFrames without dimensions
- Dynamically-injected content
- Web fonts that cause FOIT/FOUT
- Actions that require a network response
we’re removing unnecessary animations, dynamic injection that can cause layout shifts. This will address any impact Apester has on CLS, while preserving user experience.
First Input Delay, or FID, is a pagespeed metric measuring the time it takes a website to respond after a user’s first input — whether that’s clicking on a link, button, scroll, etc.
In short, less is more! and as a publisher you always want to keep your site light and fast.
To ensure better performance for FID, we implemented lazy rendering, removing unused CSS & JS codes and using Brotli compression algorithms.
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) is used to measure perceived load speed and to mark the point in the page load timeline when the page’s main content has likely loaded
Apester is not usually the main content in the page and shouldn’t impact LCP, but in cases where we are, we use a hybrid rendering approach to minimize burden on the browser.