Google’s much heralded Page Experience update is now rolling out, as confirmed by Google on their Search Central Blog last week.
The update brings in Core Web Vitals as a ranking factor and will also include:
- AMP format no longer required for the Top Stories carousel. Any page, irrespective of its Core Web Vitals score or page experience status, will be eligible to appear as long as it meets the Google News policies
- The use of non-AMP material is being expanded across news.google.com and news mobile apps
- The AMP badge icon to indicate AMP content will no longer be shown
Top Stories began using the new signal last week.
Core Web Vitals form a part of Page Experience ranking signals.
**update** please note that as of 4 Aug 2021, Google has dropped Safe Browsing as a ranking signal in Page Experience.
There's plenty of support around to help you with Page Experience.
Google has set up a new Page Experience Report in Search Console, which provides actionable insights.
“This report combines the existing Core Web Vitals report with other components of the page experience signals, such as HTTPS security, absence of intrusive interstitials, safe browsing status, and mobile friendliness.
The Page Experience report offers valuable metrics, such as the percentage of URLs with good page experience and search impressions over time, enabling you to quickly evaluate performance. You can also dig into the components of (the) page experience signal to gain additional insights on opportunities for improvement.”
You can now also filter on pages with good page experience in Google’s Search Performance report to be able to compare how different pages on your website are performing.
This update has been a long time coming. Google is rolling the update out slowly in order to be able to monitor for issues, and says we should not expect drastic changes.
“As we have said before, while this update is designed to highlight pages that offer great user experiences, page experience remains one of many factors our systems take into account. Given this, sites generally should not expect drastic changes. In addition, because we're doing this as a gradual rollout, we will be able to monitor for any unexpected or unintended issues.”
A summer of updates
There’s a lot going on at the moment - the June 2021 core update, the upcoming July core update, and the Page Experience update. The timing of all this happening in such a short timeframe makes it tricky to keep on top of things and to identify what might be affecting your site.
The two core updates are different from the Page Experience update and they shouldn’t be confused. The core updates are where sites might see more immediate ranking fluctuations.
The Page Experience update will need a gradual, ongoing approach to make sure your site is on track. It’s useful to have a plan of action and to take strategic decisions on which areas to work on, rather than trying to do everything in one big, panicked go.
See more in our article: What are Core Web Vitals and why are they such a big deal?