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What is AMP and Who needs it?

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The Internet trend is clear: the faster, the better; this applies in all cases. It is not only that the connections are faster every day, but that the response of the Web pages must be more efficient every day.

The importance of speed on the Internet is so great that even sites that optimize their pages are rewarded for faster loading. Even if you lose a bit of the essence of the page on the road, because there is no doubt that it is lost.

The speed of loading is a factor that favors users of this medium have a good appreciation of what your site offers.

As we do not settle and we always want more, there were Accelerated Mobile Pages or accelerated mobile pages, as you want to say, which are nothing more than what is described: some pages that load faster than the rest .

At what price do these pages load faster? That can be discovered throughout the article, but without doubt, you can get an idea when I tell you that many of the resources that make your website look “beautiful” are removed from the code of these accelerated versions because they delay the content load.

What is AMP and who needs it?

Accelerated mobile pages

The AMP emerged as a possible solution to improve the loading speed and they are different from other mobile web pages in that they have eliminated most of the code written in JavaScript and third-party CSS, for example, with AMP you could not use Bootstrap; AMP uses CSS declared on page.

Now you can imagine that without JavaScript, which are used mostly to animate elements of your website, and without a very complex CSS, the accelerated version of your Web page is quite simple.

In fact, AMP versions are only recommended to serve static content, if your page does not offer this type of content, then it is not an option for your project. When I speak of Web pages with static content, I mean that the user does not interact with it or modify it; A blog post is an example of a page with static content.

Another characteristic of MPAs is that they load the images only when they are visible on the screen, for that a JavaScript is used, in fact, it is what is used in the mobile and desktop versions to improve the loading speed.

In conclusion, the MPAs are very simple code pages, with a rather minimalist design that help to serve information from static Web pages very quickly. How quickly? As much as, search engines like Google, store these pages in cache, and samples with just click on the result.

Advantages of the AMP

We can not deny that there are advantages in the use of AMP, because they improve the loading speed and that is always appreciated, both by the search engine and by the user. Additionally, these pages have the advantage of being shown on a carousel in the results, which would, in theory, make your page appear first in the search results for a specific term.

However, this advantage is not entirely true, because that carousel only appears when there are different sites implementing AMP type pages; if you are the only one who uses them, the carousel probably will not appear.

Remember something, this is a relatively new project and still many do not know how to use it or do not want to risk losing positions due to poor implementation.

Without going very far, I have successfully implemented AMP pages and even then the results are not highlighted in the searches, so I would only have the benefit of serving the information more efficiently.

Undoubtedly, Google appreciates the effort to mount AMP on your website, but so far, the benefits are not complete.

Disadvantages of the AMP

The first disadvantage that comes to mind with the AMP, and that I have always criticized, is the limited use of resources for the operation of the pages.

I sincerely believe that, at the design level, we have taken a step back. If you have found an AMP page, you have realized that they are all the same and that is because there are no resources to let your imagination fly.

Usually, an AMP page displays a header with the name of the site, an image, the title of the blog post and the content. Even, many times I have seen that, not knowing much of AMP, many sites leave the blue color that is good by default in the AMP plugins and there is lost all traces of distinction between one page and another.

Another disadvantage of which few speak is that Google stores the AMP versions in cache to serve them more quickly, that is, Google does not even consult the site to display the information. The downside of this is that, with any change you make, once Google has taken the AMP version, it may take days for the version stored in the cache to be updated. As a professional who has tried this option I have seen it a lot. Even so, it is a disadvantage that can be solved if you first define what you want and implement it.

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With respect to the disadvantages of SEO I can tell you that you may have some incompatibilities with some plugins, so you may miss the work you have done so far.

How to implement it?

The AMP implementation rules are quite simple. If your case is that of an own development page, in essence, you place some labels that identify the document as an accelerated mobile page and make some changes in the structure of the HTML tags.

At the CSS level, the general rule is that you include the style in the same document on the page. The allowed JavaScript is very little, within it, that allows you to place advertising on your pages; although for that there are also specific instructions.

If you work with WordPress it is much easier. There is an official AMP plugin that is quite basic, but that covers all the specifications of these pages; other plugins are more complete and help you to manage the version in a simple way, only configuring the options from a panel.

Does it affect SEO?

With the AMP pages, there is a problem when working in WordPress, which is that the titles and descriptions that are displayed in the search results are often configured. Many times it plays against inexperience, because if it is configured properly, the system is able to take the titles and meta descriptions of the SEO plugin that you have installed.

AMP can affect SEO optimization and its positioning in search engines Web positively, of that there is no doubt, and is that not only are pages that load faster, but are preferred by the search engine (for something Google makes a carousel with they).

Now, if the success of your website depends on the differentiating nature of the offer, that is, the animations, the colors, the presentations most worked on, then AMP is not for you.

As much as it is fashionable and is being implemented, you know that not everything is good for all cases. In fact, I recommend AMP only for blogs, because I know that: Tickets do not change so often the true value is in the content and not in how it looks

Advertising and AMP

The monetization of your website may be affected by the use of the MPA and I think it has become clear as we move forward on this topic. It is not only that advertising in AMP must be configured in a special way, but that the user experience, which is often what makes you earn money, may be affected by the implementation.

Speaking of advertising and limitations on the use of JavaScript, I have to say that, even so you can place ads (I’ve tried with AdSense). In this case you just have to follow the instructions given by the same advertising system for these cases.

If you work with WordPress there are plugins that help you place the ads in AMP versions of your site without problems, you just have to be aware of the validation of the pages.

AMP validation

I have talked about everything related to the MPA and I have given you a small outline of how it is implemented, but the truth is that, in order for your page to be accepted, it must first be evaluated.

Google does not consider your page as a valid AMP if it does not pass the tests in its verification tools. In general, using a plugin is very easy to have a valid page, but sometimes it happens that, wanting to change the design without much knowledge, we fall into errors that invalidate the pages.

The recommendation is that if you are going to make changes to the code, try the Google tool to verify that everything is going well.

Does my site need AMP?

The answer depends on the website you have, as is logical. In some cases, especially with blogs, it is necessary; more than necessary I would say that it is useful and strategic to use it. In other cases its use is not justified and it would be counterproductive.

Something that I must tell you is that, in the future it will be implemented much more and will be mandatory if you want your pages to continue to have visibility in the results.

If I were you, I would start experimenting with AMP, but not only installing a plugin and having it like the rest, but implementing changes that can help you differentiate yourself. Undoubtedly, the development of new templates for AMP will be a determining factor for a Web page to be different, in appearance, from the rest.

If you have any questions or comments, the Xploradores will be happy to help you 🙂

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