In the ever-evolving digital era where more than 265.9 million people are smartphone users, it becomes a necessity to use some WordPress AMP plugin to speed up a website.
Not aware of this? This means you haven’t yet untapped the potential of the mobile version of your website. You need to instantly activate Google AMP on your site to get better customer response.
Well, wondering what exactly AMP is and what AMP has to do with your website performance? Let’s get a quick idea about what significance AMP holds for your website.
Statista reports shared that 48 percent of users in the UK expect a website to load within three seconds or even less.
If you are an impatient person who can’t afford to wait while the website page load, we simply don’t need to tell you how important fast website loading is. If you are having long loading time, this directly affects your bounce rate and becomes the reason why users yell at your website and sometimes their Internet providers (maybe they doubt that you have a fast website and their Internet speed is slow).
There are plenty of tricks and strategies that can help you optimize your website loading speed for mobile users, but AMP is a better alternative out of all. AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages that improve the page loading speed and delivers a better user experience on mobile devices.
As per the AMP project report, the definition of AMP is “AMP project is an open-source initiative that safeguards the future of the web by delivering a better, faster, and user-friendly experience.”
AMP comprises of three major components: AMP HTML, AMP JS, and AMP Cache.
- AMP HTML: AMP HTML is a subset of HTML that has custom tags, custom properties, and numerous restrictions. If you have a good hold over HTML, working upon AMP HTML will not at all be a difficult task for you.
- AMP JS: AMP JS library ensures the quick rendering of AMP HTML pages.
- AMP Cache: The AMP cache basically performs the function of serving cached AMP HTML pages.
Why is AMP Important?
Wondering why AMP is worth considering? Not one, but AMP offers ample of reasons why AMP is important for the success of your online business.
AMP is significant because it will enable web pages to load faster, this further improves the usability and compels users to stay on that web page for a longer time. In simple words, rapid load times results in better user engagement that reduces your website bounce rate and thus enhances the mobile ranking.
But don’t get mistaken that AMP will improve the user engagement on its own or it will make your web content more entertaining. So, you need to have a proper balance of both- good quality content + fast load times. Because having a fast loading speed but putting irrelevant and boring content over the website is not going to bring the potential customers to you.
What AMP Offers?
You might be wondering that does it even makes sense to implement AMP, or is it a total waste of time. So, let me disclose the big picture and learn what advantages does AMP offers for your website betterment and how it can improve your customer engagement.
- Better Performance and User Engagement: Ads and web pages that are published in the AMP open-source format loads almost instantly while delivering a more engaging experience to users on mobile as well on PC.
- Increased Flexibility: Industry owners can clearly decide how they are going to present their content and which technology vendors they can use.
- Speed up your Website: As AMP accompanies no useless component that slows down your website, AMP turns out as a fast, stable, and reliable option to fastening up your website load time. Users don’t want to visit slow websites, so if you have a fast website, you have directly targeted the potential customers towards your services.
- Mobile Ranking: Although AMP is not counted as a direct factor to increase your website ranking, it does play an indirect role in the mobile ranking due to its faster load time.
- Server Performance: When your website generates huge traffic from mobile, AMPs will directly reduce the load on the servers and maintain the performance factors to a higher level.
- Enhanced Visibility: On mobile SERP, Google now shows which all mobile pages are AMP and which are not. So, if you are among the AMP ones, you are already on the right track and users will definitely choose you over other non-AMP alternatives.
- Visitor Tracking: You can analyze and track your customers in real-time via AMP. Now, you have a clear-cut idea of how the users reached you, where they come from, what are their preferences, and a lot of other information can be tracked.
- No Sitemap required: Once you have created an AMP page, you don’t need to make an XML sitemap,rather Google will pick it automatically. So, this is another plus point of going for AMP.
How AMP works?
The prime goal of AMP is to enable faster loading of website content specifically for mobile users. The AMP technology thus helps in driving rapid page loading on mobile devices even with 3G speed. Now, let’s figure out how AMP works:
AMP uses HTML and then stores the website cache in Google AMP cache. Which means the posts are stored over Google servers, whenever someone searches for your post, Google directly fetches it from the cache memory and displays it to the user. This straightaway reduces the load time while offering instant results to the end-customers.
Does AMP affect ranking?
Being an experienced developer, you might be aware of many alternatives for page loading optimization, but opting for AMP makes optimization with easy execution while saving time and effort. And for the website owners who invest a good time for SEO rankings, they must go for AMP as it helps in enhancing the ranking of your website. So, this is another reason why AMP is preferred by the industry influencers.
So, if your web page is getting more clicks and less bounce rate, Google will automatically rank your website on the top because you are offering a better user experience to your customers.
How to setup Google AMP on your WordPress site
Now that you are aware of how AMP is helpful for your website and user experience let’s discuss how you can enable AMP on a WordPress site. Below are a few simple steps:
STEP 1: Install the AMP plugin
The most recommended way to enable AMP is by installing AMP plugin(released by Automattic, the team behind WordPress.com). Once the plugin gets activated, go to the Dashboard and then go to Appearance>>AMP to customize the AMP options. Under AMP settings, you’ll get the Design tab, click on it.
Further, choose mobile device icon at right bottom side, and get a quick view how your website will look on the mobile screen. You can easily select the header text color, header background, link color of the site, and then preview the made changes.
Once done with this, the site generates automatically AMP-compatible versions that are accessible by including /amp/ to the post URLs end.
STEP 2: Adding Google Analytics to the AMP page
In order to track and monitor how the users interact with your website, you must add Google Analytics to the AMP pages. (it might be complicated in the first stage, so you can use some WordPress plugins to correctly add Google Analytics to your AMP page). You’ll have to manually modify Google Analytics tracking code and then you’ll have to troubleshoot it.
STEP 3: Fix SEO issues
Now, you have got the basic AMP template for your website, but you need to customize the AMP pages in order to make it unique. Moreover, the plugin by default has some standard meta tags in the header which is not optimal for your website (this happens especially when you are using an SEO plugin like Yoast). So, you need to make customized changes as per your website requirements.
STEP 4:Troubleshooting & testing page speed
You can even troubleshoot other errors as Google Search Console offers way to manage AMP pages at one particular location. So, login to Google Search Console and under Search Appearance, click Accelerated Mobile Pages. You can see how many of your AMPs are indexed and which ones have issues.
Once done with this, run the AMP and some standard mobile pages over some page speed tools and analyze the results.
Get started NOW!
Before the market takes the hit and Google announces AMP as a necessary part of a website, you must get AMP done for your website right now. AMP is the one-stop solution for you to your online presence without much effort and investment and offers a mobile-friendly experience to your customers. Not only will it reduce the load times, but even uplifts your customer experience while turning anonymous visitors into loyal leads.