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Core Web Vitals: What are They and Why Do They Matter for SEO?
Simran May 10, 2024 112 views


Suppose you’re on a quest for that perfect pair of shoes online. You find a website, but… oh no! Images take forever to load, the text jumps around as the page renders, and clicking the “Add to Cart” button feels like trying to hail a taxi in rush hour traffic. Frustrated, you abandon ship and head to a competitor’s website. Sound familiar?

Unfortunately, this scenario plays out all too often. As an experienced SEO company in UK, we understand how a website visitor may feel upon encountering such situations. But what if there was a way to ensure your website is the welcoming oasis, not the frustrating desert, for your visitors?

Enter Core Web Vitals – the secret weapon for building a website that’s not just SEO-friendly but user-friendly, too. But what exactly are they, and why should you care about them for your website’s SEO?

A Brief Intro to Core Web Vitals

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Source: https://bit.ly/4ac0k5P

Core Web Vitals are a set of three metrics developed by Google to gauge the real-world user experience (UX) of a webpage. They focus on three key aspects: loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability. Simply put, they tell you how fast your website loads, how responsive it feels to user interactions, and how smoothly the content renders on the screen.

Whether you have a website listing the nearest fine dining restaurants or are the best SEO company in London offering SEO services to clients, your website’s Core Web Vitals can be the difference between a visitor and a customer.

The Three Pillars of Core Web Vitals

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Source: https://bit.ly/4byDtTk

Core Web Vitals might sound intimidating, but they’re actually three simple pillars that, when optimised, create a phenomenal user experience. As a leading digital marketing agency in UK we are here to break down each pillar to help you understand why they matter:

  1. Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): Imagine a visitor landing on your website. Their eyes move around, eager to grasp what you’re offering. LCP measures how long it takes for the most prominent piece of content, like a hero image or a large block of text, to become visible. A speedy LCP (ideally under 2.5 seconds) ensures your visitor isn’t left staring at a blank canvas, fostering a positive first impression and keeping them engaged.
  2. First Input Delay (FID): Now, your visitor is intrigued! They click on a button to learn more, but… nothing happens. A sluggish website, reflected by a high FID (ideally below 100 milliseconds), creates a frustrating lag between a user’s action and the website’s response. This can feel like wading through molasses, leading to visitors abandoning the ship before they even get started. A website with a low FID feels responsive and snappy, keeping users in the flow of their exploration.
  3. Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): Say you’re scrolling through a website, ready to delve into an article, when suddenly – bam! – text jumps around, images shift positions, and the layout rearranges itself. This jarring experience is caused by CLS, which measures the visual stability of your website. A low CLS score (ideally below 0.1) ensures a smooth and predictable layout, preventing users from getting seasick as they navigate your content. Consistency is key, and a stable website creates a sense of trust and user-friendliness.

Why Core Web Vitals Matter for SEO

Think of Core Web Vitals as a bridge connecting user experience (UX) and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). For example, if you have an eCommerce business, a seamless UX is necessary to ensure that you get more orders from the people visiting your website (a specialist eCommerce SEO Company in London like us can help you understand how to convert most of the customers).

So, why do Core Web Vitals matter so much for SEO?

The User is King (or Queen)

Google gives preference to websites that offer a delightful user experience. A slow, unresponsive website with jumping content frustrates visitors, leading to higher bounce rates (people leaving your site quickly) and lower engagement. This sends a clear message to Google: users aren’t happy here.

Dwell Time Speaks Volumes

When users find a website that’s fast, responsive, and visually stable, they’re more likely to stick around, delve deeper into your content, and interact with your calls to action. This increased dwell time (the amount of time users spend on your website) tells Google that your site is valuable and engaging, potentially boosting your search ranking.

Mobile-First Indexing

With the majority of web searches now happening on mobile devices, Google favours mobile-friendliness. Core Web Vitals are particularly crucial for mobile optimisation, as these metrics can be even more critical for a positive experience on smaller screens. Being a reputed SEO company in UK, we pay special attention to website optimisation for mobile platforms.

The Algorithm’s Embrace

While content remains king, Google’s search algorithms increasingly factor in user experience signals like Core Web Vitals. Optimising for these metrics doesn’t guarantee a number one ranking, but it can give you a significant edge over competitors who haven’t focused on a smooth user experience.

In essence, prioritising Core Web Vitals is an investment in both your users and your website’s SEO success. You’re creating a welcoming environment that keeps visitors engaged and sending positive signals to search engines, ultimately leading to a win-win situation.

Also read: Check out the top technical SEO factors you should consider in addition to Core Web Vitals for better rankings.

Measuring Core Web Vitals

There are several free tools available to measure your Core WebVitals. As a full-service digital marketing agency in UK, we use Google Search Console and PageSpeed Insights, which are excellent options for measuring Core Web Vitals. These tools provide detailed reports on your website’s performance for each Core Web Vital, along with suggestions for improvement.

Understanding the results involves interpreting the assigned scores. Generally, a score of 75 or above indicates good performance, while scores below 50 require attention.

Optimising for Core Web Vitals

Here are some strategies to improve each Core Web Vital:

  1. LCP: Optimise image sizes, leverage browser caching, and minimise render-blocking JavaScript.
  2. FID: Reduce JavaScript execution time, minimise third-party scripts, and prioritise critical rendering tasks.
  3. CLS: Use appropriate image dimensions, reserve space for elements before they load, and avoid dynamic content insertions above existing content.

The Future of Core Web Vitals and SEO

As user experience continues to be a top-ranking factor for Google, Core Web Vitals will likely play an even bigger role in SEO. Webmasters and SEO professionals should stay updated on Google’s evolving guidelines and continuously optimise their websites for optimal user experience.

By focusing on Core Web Vitals, you’re not just improving your SEO but creating a website that users will appreciate and keep coming back to. Widely regarded as a preeminent SEO company in London, we can help you get your Core Web Vitals optimised for better website performance and, ultimately, better Google rankings.

So, take the first step towards SEO success – optimise your Core Web Vitals today!

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