Beginner’s Guide to Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

Author Landon Fanetti

Posted Mar 5, 2023

Reads 11.4K

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Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is a web standard built with existing web technologies that help make mobile web faster. Its goal is to read the details about AMP and understand how it's revolutionizing the mobile web. Slower internet connections, UX problems, and excluding users from accessing content harm accessibility and reduce conversion rates. That’s why a team effort launched AMP, an open standard designed to create mobile-optimized content that load instantly on any device.

Major news sites such as The Economist, The Guardian News, and Financial Times have adopted AMP to stay competitive in the mobile market. It's safe to assume that if you're searching for fresh news stories using search terms like "Rio Olympics," you’ll come across AMP pages in your search results. Google differentiates AMP pages by labeling them with a lightning bolt icon, which indicates they are worth clicking because they will load quickly.

Discover AMP: Revolutionizing the Way We View Websites

Have you ever clicked on a link to a website and then got frustrated as it took forever to load? Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is here to change that. This open-source HTML framework creates web pages that are lightweight and designed for fast, smooth-loading. Its stated goal is to make mobile content faster and give users an engaging experience.

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The key difference between AMP and traditional webpages is the stripped-down, mobile-optimized AMP copy. Instead of taking all the existing HTML5 page content and adding more code to make it mobile-friendly, creating an AMP version involves creating a new, simplified alternative. This approach enables faster processing and delivery of content for mobile devices.

AMP supports existing web standards, making sure that an open web still exists where anyone can access any site's content without being locked into platform-specific apps like Facebook Instant Articles or Apple News. By using AMP, publishers can provide their readers with a better user experience on their websites while maintaining control over their content distribution.

1. And This Is Where It Gets Political

Let's start by stating the technically true fact that Google AMP is an open-source project. Many companies, including WordPress, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest, have been key code contributors to its development. However, the main promoter of Google AMP has always been...Google.

AMP prioritizes user experience over anything else. Limiting CSS and Javascript on web pages improves the critical rendering path, resulting in faster page loading times for users. While this sounds like a positive thing in theory, it can also limit user interface design options for publishers who rely on these elements to create visually appealing webpages. The secret sauce to Google AMP's success is its ability to create webpages that load lightning-fast while maintaining a seamless user experience. But with great power comes great responsibility - which brings us to why it gets political.

2. Here’s the Rather Technical Part

Here's the rather technical part - accelerated mobile pages (AMP) are designed to improve the lightning load speed of mobile web pages. When a user clicks on an AMP page, the content is preloaded from Google's servers into a cache, and then prerendered for optimal display. This means that users can access the content they want faster, without waiting for it to load.

The Google AMP viewer prioritizes linking to AMP pages in search results and top stories carousel, giving preferential treatment to sites that have implemented AMP. Content publishers can sign their content with a domain signed amp content or signed exchange (SXG), ensuring that their URL remains visible even when viewed through the Google domain. These benefits have made AMP popular in both the tech and SEO industries, although some have condemned it as giving unfair advantages to certain sites. Overall, AMP provides attractive benefits for those looking to improve their website's mobile performance.

Why AMP Pages are Beneficial for Your Website

The potential advantages of using AMP pages for your website are numerous. Depending on the type of website you have, you may see benefits like improved data consumption, improved server performance, higher ad viewability, and more. One of the most commonly realized benefits of using AMP pages is that they load much faster than traditional web pages. This means that visitors to your website will be able to access content more quickly and with less frustration.

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Another advantage of using AMP pages is that they are served through a free CDN, which can help to reduce the load on your servers and improve overall performance. Additionally, because AMP pages are designed to be streamlined and optimized for mobile devices, they tend to use less data than traditional web pages. This means that users who are accessing your site from a mobile device may have a better experience and be more likely to return in the future. Overall, there are many reasons why you might want to consider implementing AMP pages on your website, including improved performance and user experience for both desktop and mobile users.

1. Additional Visibility in Google Search Results

Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) are designed to provide a fast loading page experience for mobile users. However, the benefits of AMP pages extend beyond just speed. AMP pages also offer an enhanced appearance in Google SERPs with a lightning bolt icon designation that increases click-through rates.

Select industries I've worked with have statistically relevant data showing that choosing AMP results knowing they will have rich result features like headline text and larger-than-thumbnail images lead to a marginal increase in visibility on Google SERPs. Additionally, valid structured data increases the likelihood of being featured in host carousels that show courses, movies, recipes, and other rich result features.

The additional visibility provided by AMP pages can be seen not only in traditional Google search results but also in Google Images and the coveted Top Stories carousel. With COVID-19 related content dominating search queries this past year, the importance of having an exclusive swipe to visit functionality from the source page has become even more apparent.

While the remaining pros and cons of AMP outweigh each other depending on individual use cases, it is clear that additional visibility is a main driver for implementing AMP pages alongside ranking focused on-page experience metrics such as Google's upcoming Core Web Vitals update.

2. From a Developer’s Perspective

From a Developer's Perspective, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) can be both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, the restricted framework promises lightning-fast load times for mobile users. However, this speed comes with an extra burden of adhering to the ever-evolving AMP standard plugins.

While implementing AMP may give websites a head start in terms of loading times, it can also create technical debt as canonical pages and AMP-native versions must subsequently remain valid. Additionally, even with the amp cache and Twitter's additional performance optimizations, AMP pages rarely work perfectly, and developers must constantly tweak their code to ensure optimal speed. Overall, while AMP offers impressive light-speed load times for mobile users, it can be a restrictive framework that requires continuous attention from developers.

3. From a Marketer’s Perspective

From a Marketer's Perspective, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is a powerful tool to drive impressions and ensure parity with regular pages. AMP pages take up precious space on the top stories carousel swipe functionality, encouraging users to engage with the content. However, there is an extra burden on the development team to create separate versions of each page for AMP.

One downside is that Google's AMP viewer dilutes brand identity as it appears in a Google domain, not the actual site. Additionally, engagement metrics due to live doesn't necessarily translate to actual engagement on the site itself. Another issue is that implementing AMP costs double as much as regular page development due to the added complexity of creating signed exchanges for publishers who want their pages to appear in the fold. Despite these challenges, it's important for marketers to consider using AMP in order to stay competitive in an increasingly mobile-first world.

Boost Your Website Speed: Learn to Optimize AMP Pages

If you want to improve your website's speed, then optimizing AMP pages is the way to go. AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a Google project that aims to create web pages that load faster on mobile devices. Many websites have already adopted AMP, and the results rise up in terms of visibility boost and better user experience.

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One of the potential reasons why your website is slow could be because AMP wasn't implemented correctly. From an SEO perspective, having properly optimized AMP pages can lead to a significant visibility boost in search engine results pages. Therefore, it is crucial to follow the top optimization actions when setting up your website's AMP pages.

In conclusion, adopting AMP for your website can improve its speed and user experience while also providing a visibility boost from an SEO perspective. By implementing the correct AMP optimization techniques, you can make sure that your pages are loading fast on mobile devices and bring more traffic to your site. So what are you waiting for? Start optimizing your AMP pages today!

Frequently Asked Questions

How does Google AMP work?

Google AMP works by optimizing web pages for faster loading on mobile devices. This is achieved through a stripped-down version of HTML and caching the content on Google servers, resulting in quicker access to content and improved user experience.

What are AMP pages and why are they important?

AMP pages are web pages designed to load quickly on mobile devices. They are important because they improve user experience, reduce bounce rates, and boost search engine rankings.

How do I prepare my AMP pages for Google search?

To prepare your AMP pages for Google search, ensure that they are mobile-friendly, fast-loading, and have structured data markup. Optimize your content for relevant keywords and include a clear call-to-action to improve click-through rates.

How fast do AMP pages load?

AMP pages load incredibly fast, with an average load time of less than one second. This is because AMPs use streamlined HTML code and are designed to prioritize speed over complex features.

What is AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)?

AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is an open-source framework designed to improve the performance and speed of mobile web pages. It achieves this by using simplified HTML and caching, resulting in quicker loading times and a better user experience.

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Landon Fanetti

Writer at Exgenex

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Landon Fanetti is a prolific author with many years of experience writing blog posts. He has a keen interest in technology, finance, and politics, which are reflected in his writings. Landon's unique perspective on current events and his ability to communicate complex ideas in a simple manner make him a favorite among readers.

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