Speed, speed, speed. It took you about three seconds to read these words. If your web page doesn’t load in the same time, 53% of the mobile users leave the website. Google officially declared that the load speed of the website will be one of the ranking parameters,introducing the concept of Core Web Vitals. Among those who deal with Seo and websites development panic broke out, but actually there is nothing new. We just need to figure out how to read the data before we draw any conclusions.

Core Web Vitals are the parameters that Google considers critical to assessing the quality of a user’s browsing experience on a web page. They refer to load speed, response time, and layout stability. From 2021 they will affect the placement of the website on Google,but the quality and relevance of the content will always remain the most important factors.

How Core Web Vitals are calculated

Core Web Vitals parameters are calculated from the Google Chrome experience of users who have given consent to syncing history and enabling usage statistics reports. The data is collected and processed by the Chrome User Experience, from here it is then shared with the other analysis tools.

One of the main tools for analyzing Core Web Vitals is Google Search Console: the tab, that has been recently added, analyzes all the indexed pages of the website. You can analyze individual pages (even sites we don’t own) with the Lighthouse and PageSpeed Insightstools, or with the Web Vitals extension for Google Chrome.

What are the three Core Web Vitals

Core Web Vitals are used to determine if web pages are fast, what elements slow down loading, and how we can improve. The three elements are load speed, response time, and layout stability. Actually PageSpeed Insights adds the first view with content that is not a Core Web Vital, but can help us improve the usability of the website.

Google Core Web Vitals

LCP: Load speed

(LCP) Largest Contentful Paint is the load time of the largest item visible on the splash screen (so not after scrolling). It is usually an image, a video, an animation or a block of text. This value indicates the load speed of the main page element. The optimal value should be less than 2.5 seconds.

FID: Response time

FID (First input delay) is the elapsed time between the user’s click on an interactive website item and the response from the browser. Scrolling and zooming the page is not considered, but it can be penalized by too much JavaScript loaded in advance. The optimal value should be less than 100 milliseconds.

CLS: Layout Stability

CLS (Cumulative Layout Shift) measures the movement of an element within the page after the page finishes loading. The result is the product between the impact component (space occupied by the element before and after the move) and the distance component (the percentage value of the maximum distance covered by the element divided by the window size). The optimal value should be less than 0.1.

How and why to improve Core Web Vitals

Google announced that from 2021 Core Web Vitals will be considered fully-fledged elements that will contribute to the positioning, but the quality value of the content will always be the most important aspect. From Seo side,therefore, we must try to increase these parameters with technical operations, but we must not panic if we are not promoted with flying colors.

We can reduce the weight of Css, JavaScript, images, and media, but also use asynchronous loading. There are some WordPress plugins that can optimize the performance of the website. We can also adopt the AMP format that reduces the load time of web pages from mobile.

From usability side, Core Web Vitals give us important guidance to improve the browsing quality of our users and avoid abandonment caused by a website that is too slow. After all, if we make our users happy, Google also smiles at us.

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