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Understanding Core Web Vitals

In May, Google will launch its Page Experience Update, a significant search algorithm reconfiguration that will place ‘Core Web Vitals’ front and centre, making your website’s user-friendliness more important than ever. In anticipation of this event, Digital Marketing Depot recently released a comprehensive guide to Core Web Vitals. Here’s what you need to know:

What are Core Web Vitals? Core Web Vitals are three unique metrics – Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) – that Google uses to gauge a webpage’s performance.

Largest Contentful Paint: Per Digital Marketing Depot’s guide, LCP ‘measures loading performance and is focused on the largest element that loads in on the initial viewpoint.’ In other words, LCP gauges how efficiently the largest element – usually an image or video but sometimes a large text field – loads on any given webpage. The faster the load, the better the score.

First Input Delay: FID measures ‘the time between when a user interacts with a page (click a button or tap a link) and when the browser is able to start processing that interaction.’ Once again, the faster that process starts, the higher the score.

Cumulative Layout Shift: CLS is all about stability: it ‘looks at unexpected layout shifts when a page is loaded.’ In other words, if you banners, for example, load behind the rest of your page, the resulting layout shifts would hurt your score.

In preparation for Google’s Page Experience Update, GrowthEngine Media has spent the past two months reviewing SEO clients’ websites to ensure their Core Web Vitals meet Google’s preferred standards. While ranking fluctuations are expected across the internet, we believe this preparation will reduce negative impacts.

As a Google Premier Partner digital marketing agency, we are committed to helping our clients get found in Google search results, whether through paid advertising or search engine optimization. Contact us today to learn more.


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