Google has announced that its long maligned Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) platform is losing its preferential treatment in its search results.
What is Google AMP?
Google introduced AMP a way to provide optimised loading experiences on mobile devices. The content was cached by Google and served off a Google domain name when found in search results. Accelerated Mobile Pages ranked higher, and appear in search results with a special badge indicating the page is fast loading, even if didn't necessarily load faster than other sites. AMP was also a requirement to appear in the Top Stories Carousel at the top of the results, or in Google News.
What is Changing?
The change to remove these advantages in search is being rolled out as part of the 'Page Experience Update' that is scheduled to take place in June 2021. This update includes the much blogged about Web Vitals. Here's what Google themselves have to say:
“The AMP format is no longer required and that any page, irrespective of its Core Web Vitals score or page experience status, will be eligible to appear in the Top Stories carousel. We're also bringing similar updates to the Google News app, a key destination for users around the world to get a comprehensive view of the important news of the day. As part of the page experience update, we're expanding the usage of non-AMP content to power the core experience on news.google.com and in the Google News app. Additionally, we will no longer show the AMP badge icon to indicate AMP content.”
Why is Google doing this?
AMP caused a large backlash from the internet community as being contrary to the idea of an open web, Google was inserting themselves between the user and a website, and introduced a number of headaches for Webmasters. The official line is that with the new Web Vitals as ranking signals Google didn’t want to overburden webmasters. However the control that Google was exerting over websites with AMP, and the recent Antitrust cases putting pressure on Google, they may just have decided it was prudent to drop it.
What do I do now?
If you are currently using AMP then you can keep on using it. If you aren't, then you can concentrate on optimising your own website to create a great loading experience without using the Google mandated way, and not be penalised. That's a good thing!
The imminent arrival of the 'Page Experience Update' means its more important than ever to acquaint yourself with the Web Vitals and to also check how Google views your site performance in the Chrome UX Report. And remember, Peakhour.io can make your website faster, secure, and reliable in under 5 minutes.