The impact on search rankings from Core Web Vitals has already been felt.
Currently, Core Web Vitals impact mobile and by later next month will also impact desktop/laptop.
Clearly, Core Web Vitals are becoming more and more entrenched in the digital landscape, which means that businesses with a digital presence (what business doesn’t!?) are increasingly looking to bolster their performance if they want to please not only Google but its own customers through better online experiences.
Chrome’s own research found that 31% of websites around the world reach good standards of all three Core Web Vitals.
This figure is only 5% higher than when Google announced that Core Web Vitals would become central to its KPIs.
Even for websites that hold good Core Web Vitals scores, even the most minor of changes may jolt sudden drops in scores that don’t seem immediately clear.
As one recent example, one site made some changes to the setup of its Progressive Web App (PWA) before realizing that it resulted in big decreases in its Cumulative Layout Shift score.
Another example is of a publisher that neglected its Core Web Vitals until last year when it noticed a 16% fall in its Google AdSense earnings thanks to invalid traffic – which spiked to 26% a month later.
It looked into its scores and found that its Cumulative Layout Shift was running below 60%. After some tweaks, all three of its metrics were scoring above 90%.
As the desktop update is set to be released – and bring more challenges to website owners and managers – the only way to keep on top of things is to set up real-user monitoring.
There are four reasons why this is important.
One: Access real-time data. While it’s true that the tools of Google tend to be based on historical data – having to wait weeks for updates – real-user monitoring platforms are based on real-time data.
This benefits publishers in that they are able to see how their websites are performing immediately and can make corrections in real-time.
Two: Track real user experiences. As opposed to lab data, field data is what’s needed by publishers to gain insight into what’s happening in the real world, such as the impact of factors like different locations, device types, and network quality.
Because Google uses field data for its page experience rankings, it’s a necessity to prioritize this, instead of lab data, when it comes to learning how users are experiencing the website.
Three: spotting specific issues. Publishers can quickly spot when their website isn’t running at optimal levels if they have the easy ability to see each of the three Core Web Vitals metrics.
When issues are addressed quickly, it lessens the exposure to subpar user experiences. With the ability to drill down into each page, device type, and browser, publishers are well positioned to pinpoint what exactly needs fixing.
Four: Google tells us. “The data provided by Chrome User Experience Report offers a quick way to assess the performance of sites, but it does not provide the detailed, per-page view telemetry that is often necessary to accurately diagnose, monitor, and quickly react to regressions’” stated Google. “As a result, we strongly recommend that sites set up their own real-user monitoring.”