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Are AMP Pages Worth It? (Accelerated Mobile Pages)

First launched in 2016, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) has since become an established part of the digital marketing and SEO scene. A wealth of well-known news publishers around the world are using AMP to get their content out to the mobile world, and it looks like other industries are following suit. A quick Google search of the latest news on your mobile and you'll see plenty of AMP articles prioritised at the top of the news feed, along with it's associated lightning bolt symbol. It’s clear to see that this marketing technique certainly isn’t something to be ignored - but are AMP pages worth it for your website? Let’s take a look.
 

What Are AMP Web Pages?

Otherwise known as accelerated mobile pages, AMP was first created as a response to new features such as Apple News and Facebook Instant Articles and was a team project between Twitter and Google.

The thought behind AMP was to create pages that are optimised for mobile rather than desktop devices, stripping them of features that dramatically slow down loading time to create a lightning-fast experience. In a world where patience is becoming more and more of a premium, you can see why Google have turned their thoughts to speed.

The framework is completely free and open-source, allowing the user to build stripped down versions of their ‘main’ pages to optimise them for quicker mobile load times. It does this by using a more streamlined, simpler version of HTML and gets rid of slow-loading features such as forms. It also operates on a simpler version of CSS and only allows for a Javascript library that works alongside AMP HTML, ensuring the site is optimised and prevents rendering blockages from third-party JavaScript. 

 

Latest Developments in AMP

These superfast mobile pages were initially used by blog and news platforms, but have now become popularised across industries, including e-commerce. As reported earlier this year, there are now over 31 million domain names taking advantage of all that AMP has to offer, and it’s set to be one of the top digital marketing trends over the coming year. 
 

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AMP Pages and SEO

AMP was initially designed to improve user experience, but it looks to have plenty of SEO benefits for mobile sites too. It’s not too much of a surprise - Google wants people to start using AMP, and to give it search advantages is a great way of making this happen. But, with a whole heap of other search backers, such as Bing and Baidu, it should have benefits across search platforms. Here are just a few:

  • Increased Speed - The main benefit of AMP is undoubtedly the increased speed for mobile pages. Speed has been an SEO ranking factor for some time now - ever since Google rolled out their ‘Speed Update’ in 2018. The speed of a page can also affect bounce rate, which is another ranking factor that could see you rise or fall through the SERPs.
  • AMP-only Features - Google has reserved spots in its search results for AMP pages, meaning you can hit these prime spots of carousel news stories and catch the attention of search engine users. 
  • AMP Stories - Introduced in 2018, AMP Stories allow publishers to access new options for storytelling. With an image-rich format that delivers quick content, they can increase your visibility in search engines and provide a better user experience.
  • AMP Icon - The AMP icon that shows up in results engines is thought to benefit clickthrough rate. When users see the icon, they’ll be more inclined to click onto the page knowing it will load quickly on their mobile device and offers a streamlined experience.


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So, Should You Use AMP Pages?

AMP pages may have a lot of benefits, but they aren’t always for everyone. For some websites, their user experience will be sacrificed despite quicker loading speeds - particularly if you have a lot of complex features that require technical HTML code. It also prioritises how efficient a website is, which can have a negative impact on creative aspects and make a site less visually appealing. However, as long as you know how to use it to improve your site rather than hinder it, you can get around a lot of the drawbacks.

For mobile sites that don’t require complicated formats and features, it can have huge benefits. In a world that’s increasingly mobile-focused, it makes sense to change your website up to work on these devices, and AMP is an easy way of making sure this happens.
 

Additional Resources

AMP on Google
AMP Examples
AMP YouTube Channel


If you’re interested in learning more about AMP and whether it could be of use to your business, feel free to get in touch with our team of digital marketing experts on 020 3397 4155 or email info@green-river-media.com