If there is one thing Google is known for, it’s new algorithms that throw everything into mayhem. Just when you think you have the hang of things, something changes, your traffic drops, and you are suddenly scrambling to find where it all went wrong. Does this sound familiar? You’re not alone.
There is yet another algorithm update set to hit, but don’t stress, you have until the New Year to get your head around this one. Thanks to the year that has been, Google has decided to throw us a life jacket and give us a bit of a heads up with this one. This means you have the unique opportunity now to adjust your website now and keep your traffic steady. So, what exactly can we expect?
What Google Has To Say…
In their own words, here’s what Google tells us about the Page Experience algorithm update:
“The page experience signal measures aspects of how users perceive the experience of interacting with a web page. Optimizing for these factors makes the web more delightful for users across all web browsers and surfaces, and helps sites evolve towards user expectations on mobile. We believe this will contribute to business success on the web as users grow more engaged and can transact with less friction.”
It all comes down to user experience.
Let’s Take An Example…
You have an ‘Add to Cart’ button on your website. When the user clicks it, the item is added into the cart. When the user then clicks through to the cart, the item is no longer there. This creates poor user experience, not to mention a loss of sales for you. Google is now on the hunt for it. The aim for this algorithm is to make sure the sites that are ranking highly, aren’t creating negative experiences for their users.
What Does This Mean?
Essentially, it is now putting big brands on the same playing field as the smaller ones and giving everybody the same opportunity to rank. In the past, search engine optimisation has focused on backlinks and building your brand’s reputation online, but now the focus has turned to the experience you are offering the user.
Google’s mission is to favour the sites that the user loves the most. Now’s your chance to beat the algorithm and make sure your website is optimised and ready to go when it rolls out next year. Consider this an early Christmas present, gift-wrapped and ready to use.
Let’s take a look at how you can make changes now to put your site in the best position possible for the New Year.
Optimising for User Experience
Google is putting the focus on the user page experience. Their aim is to help access the information they are looking for, while being provided with a great user experience in the process.
- Speed: the first area to focus on is the speed of your site. The faster it loads, the happier a user will be. There are plenty of free tools online you can use to test this out.
- 404 errors: is there anything more frustrating than clicking on a broken link? Don’t let that be you! Scroll through your site and fix them all before Google starts penalising.
- Test, test, test: go through the site from the perspective of a user. Ask friends, colleagues and family to do the same. Click every button and test all the functions. Are there any issues?
- Check out your competitors: this is something you should always be doing anyway, to make sure you are always at the top of the game. Go through their pages and take a look at their user experience on each one. What are they doing well? Could you be doing that on your site?
User experience is going to be more and more popular over time. The more your website is liked, the better ranking potential Google will provide you with.
While most algorithm updates make us want to bury our head in the sand, we have been offered the gift of foresight with this one to keep our website running efficiently. If you are after a helping hand to make sure you are providing the best user experience possible, then speak to Design Point today. We will get you on track to see you through the other side of this algorithm in your best shape yet.