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Google’s AMP: All that you Need to know about it

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accelerated-mobile-pages-projectPost Mobilegeddon, Google is already mulling the declaration of the Accelerated Mobile Pages (or the AMP) project. As its name suggests, AMP seeks to accelerate the speed with which the web pages open on mobile devices.

Exploring the significance of Accelerated Mobile Pages

Now, Google had already made its initial declarations regarding the ambitious project in October. In a bid to combat the challenges on their way to providing more user-friendly experience on mobile devices, Google is working closely with analytics providers, tech companies, and publishers to back their AMP project. The mobile web experience of users, as of now, is fairly thwarted by too many tracking scripts, extraneous codes and fonts. All these factors largely affect the loading speed adversely. Plus, there are chances of the software system being bloated or old. Google along with its partners is looking to beat these odds with the help of dedicated open framework known as AMP HTML. It is based on the latest technologies but is tuned to offer accelerated speed of loading web pages on mobiles even when these pages contain animation, videos and media. Obviously, the HTML code, we are talking about here, is much cleaner, less bloated and of course backed by the better ability to amp up the speed of the web pages.

As per the latest tech news, the update will tentatively be launched in February 2016. A few of the biggest names in the publishing industry- namely, Huffington Post, The WSJ, BuzzFeed, Vox Media, the Economist have collaborated with Google- to shore up marketing efforts in places like Mexico, India and Indonesia. Other illustrious names in the list of partners include Tango, LINE and Viber. However, Google has clearly clarified that the AMP project is still in its nascent stages but users can definitely download this code since it is an open source framework. It has also been reported that the initial AMP tests have turned to be fruitful as far as user experience is concerned.

The web pages that are crafted with custom code can also be cached, as per the Google experts. They have explained that this facility will enable online publishers to store temporary clones of their content on servers near the readers. This, in turn, will result in lesser loading time. Now, once you start using the new code, you will have a different version of the news articles that are now considered as the Accelerated Mobile Pages. Google will not store the original version of the news articles on its server but will definitely enable the publishers to store their cached versions. As far as the original version is concerned the files will primarily possess the media outlets. Google allows the publishers to store the cached versions of their news stories on their servers because all publishers out there don’t really have the money as well as the expertise at the same time to do everything on their own. As such, they have the provision to take Google’s help to distribute their content.

Will it Affect the Rankings?

And now, the most important part. The rankings. Yes, Google will consider AMP as a major ranking factor for websites. Google has clarified that the search engine giant will definitely consider the loading time of web pages as one of the important factors governing the ranking of the site. However, that does not really mean that AMP alone can propel your site to the top of the search engine ranking page. No, it does not happen that way. You have to ensure that AMP is well backed by the quality content. You cannot expect inaccurate news to rank high on the search engine even if you have “AMPed” your pages. The quality of the pages will continue steering rankings in a major way. So, make sure you are not undermining the value of accuracy in any which way.

Summing Up

Since the launch is tentatively planned at the end of February, it’s too early to comment on the exact impact of an update on your rankings. However, it’s always prudent on your part to make yourself aware of the nitty-gritty of the update before it “gets you” as far as your ranking on Google is concerned!

Stanislaus Okwor is a Web Designer / Developer based in Lagos - Nigeria. He is the Director at Stanrich Online Technologies. He is knowledgeable in Content management System - Wordpress, Joomla and PHP/MySQL etc

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