The three metrics that make up Google’s Core Web Vitals rest at the forefront of improving online user experiences. First Input Delay, Cumulative Layout Shift, and Largest Contentful Paint.
As they consist of Google’s big page experience update, they are factors that pack some weight on the search engine of choice by an overwhelming majority of online users.
In fact, the importance of Core Web Vitals – apart from Google naming them ‘core’ to the digital experience – was clear when Google announced the role they would play, which sent alarm bells to all site owners across the world.
However, I should point out that the Core Web Vitals are not the only metrics that matter for providing online visitors a good experience. They are simply the more important ones to monitor, track, and enhance when possible and plausible to do so.
That’s because they are the metrics that measure a webpage’s loading time, a webpage’s interactivity, and a webpage’s visual stability.
Why they matter
The essence of the Core Web Vitals is to improve the web experience for visitors and to bring a bit more clarity to website owners about how to actually provide them such experiences.
Said differently, Google wants visitors to have better online experiences and wants website owners to provide them. So as follows, if a page has poor Core Web Vitals scores then it offers poor user experience. As a result, the page is less likely to rank well on its search engine.
Each of the metrics concentrates on a particular aspect of a site’s performance. Yet they are intertwined that, taken together, complement one another. So for example, if a page takes 2.7 seconds to fully load, the user is much more likely to leave the site.
The need to improve
The benefits of improving Core Web Vitals are many, and include improving page rankings and protecting them. So it’s really not worth ignoring these new changes as you may see yourself sliding further down the rankings… Don’t take the risk!
One of the key areas that continues to perform poorly is the quality of mobile experiences. Since 2016 the size of mobile websites has doubled from 800kb to 2,000kb – compared to desktop/laptop sites that have expanded by around 1/3 from 1,400kb to 2,100kb.
When it comes to Core Web Vitals, as one example, just 60.1% of mobile sites that were analyzed in the US had a good Largest Contentful Paint score. When taken collectively, just 16.2% of mobile sites manage to achieve a “good” score across all three Core Web Vitals.
So the room for improvement is massive, and the number of ways to enhance online experiences is expansive. And so for companies that don’t want to see their rankings slide, their sites less visited, and their pockets emptier, they’re going to need to not only pay attention to Core Web Vitals, but have a solid understanding of them and know how to enhance their scores.