AMP: Accelerated Mobile Pages

In a series of articles, we’ve been talking about making the most of your online presence and getting your site ready for the future. It’s not enough to plan your website using only today’s best practices, because trends quickly become tomorrow’s best practices.

Responsive web design, mobile design, accelerated mobile pages, and Facebook Instant Articles need to be part of your website design and development plan. Most of the competition and design firms in the Neumarkt area aren’t giving much thought to this, but we are.

They’re the same people that thought mobile design would come and go, Google was just a silly search engine, and coding in anything but HTML would be outlandish. Of course, these people were wrong.

In this article, we’re going to explore accelerated mobile pages (AMP) — what they are, why you need to begin thinking about them, and how to get started.

What Are Accelerated Mobile Pages?

Part of an open source project that is backed by Google, Accelerated Mobile Pages was created with the intention of building a faster and better experience for mobile users.

This trend towards mobile is likely to continue to increase. AMPs are like professional bodybuilders. They’re similar to normal pages but with a ton of muscle, strength and power.

The design of AMPs isn’t anything new. Some developers, and businesses with deep pockets, would build and design pages that were similar to AMPs. But it would take them hours and a ton of resources to build the page.

However, new developments in the industry have allowed these mobile optimized pages to be created at scale. AMPs have standardised javascript components, consist of streamlined CSS code, limited HTML, and are designed to be heavily cacheable. In other words, these pages are cleaner in design, easier to read, and load much faster than traditional web pages.

To look at an example of AMP, you can head over to the Guardian, they were one of the first test partners. Go to any article on their site and at the end of the url, type “/amp”. You will be taken to an accelerated mobile page, which will look something like the example below.

AMP: Accelerated Mobile Pages_Code Clinic KreativAgentur_about-codeclinic_online-marketing_technology_tips_3affe1c_

The Benefits of Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)

There are a variety of benefits to using Accelerated Mobile Pages — both for the user and your business. The most important one has to do with being able to rank in the search engines. Google has been placing a strong emphasis on mobile-friendliness in their search algorithm.

So here are some of the benefits of Accelerated Mobile Pages that you and your users will typically experience:

Speed

There have been thousands of studies that have shown the impact of speed on the bottom line, user experience, and your ability to rank your site in Google. In an article done by Kissmetrics, they stated that a 1 second delay in load speed can results in a 7% reduction in conversion.

For an average business, this easily results in thousands of dollars a year. What would an increased conversion rate mean for your business?

That’s the advantage AMPs offer. Because of their flexible and streamlined design, they are built to load fast. A fast loading time will mean lower bounce rates, which means more people staying on your site for longer.

And everyone knows that the longer a user stays on your site, the more revenue you’ll be able to make. Speed matters.

Improved Search Engine Results

Google isn’t shy about letting us know that AMPs will receive special display features in Google Search results. If you log into webmaster tools, under the tab “search appearance”, you can find a section for Accelerated Mobile Pages.

AMP: Accelerated Mobile Pages_Code Clinic KreativAgentur_about-codeclinic_online-marketing_technology_tips_3affe1c_

As you can see, this site doesn’t have AMP set-up yet. But in the box, Google says they reward sites with AMP; “If your AMP-compliant pages include a few additional pieces of information, they can also benefit from special display features in Google Search results.”

Distribution

Somewhat related to speed is distribution. AMPs offer publishers the advantage of the open web’s potential for their content to appear everywhere quickly — across platforms and apps. This could lead to more revenue via ads and subscriptions. Additionally, every AMP powered page now has twice the potential exposure of a non-AMP page.

User Experience

A better user experience (UX) will have a huge impact on your bottom line, retention and how customers feel about your brand. Companies that offer a good UX can expect more profit, better visitor retention, and more referrals.

Sites that have a poor UX lose the visitor and the visitor’s friends, colleagues and family. Around 44% of people who leave a site because it doesn’t load fast enough would tell a friend they had a poor shopping experience.

How to Get Started With AMP

Unless you’re a developer or have really good technical skills, I wouldn’t try to set up Accelerated Mobile Pages on your own. I would recommend seeking help from a developer.

Code Clinic can personally take care of setting up Accelerated Mobile Pages on your site. This way you get all of the benefits of AMPs without any of the headache and stress.

The process for getting started with AMPs can be a bit tedious and confusing if you’re not very tech-savvy. You need to have a solid understanding of HTML and Javascript if you’re going to try to do it on your own.

If you manage to lay the groundwork, you’ll still have to make sure everything is setup and configured correctly. Accelerated Mobile Pages are served only when Google deems them worthy. AMPs have to be built in a very specific way or else the page will be invalid and it won’t be used.

For example, certain tags have to be in a specific order and at a certain place in your code. Unfortunately, there aren’t many tools to help make the process easy — yet.

Conclusion

AMPs offer a great benefit to any business. It can mean more money on your bottom line, higher retention rates, and above the industry average conversion rates.

This mobile trend is going to continue and we recommend that every single business begins planning their site around accelerated mobile pages. But getting started is best handled by a skilled web developer.

That’s why Code Clinic have created a special service to help your business prepare for the future. We can help you effortlessly set up Accelerated Mobile Pages, Facebook Instant Article, mobile design, and responsive design. Remember, tomorrow’s trends WILL soon become today’s best practice.

Start planning for the future, by giving Code Clinic KreativAgentur a call today on +44 (0)161-408-4759.

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Phill Healey
[Technical Director]
Phill has been designing and developing websites since 1986 in the early days of the web. As a self taught teenager, he built one of the world’s first Internet radio stations. Since then, he's gained numerous qualifications and several awards for his work in the industry. As a result he has had the pleasure of working in agencies in Manchester & London UK, and now Bavaria, Germany.

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