Time To Get AMP’ed: A Beginners Guide to Accelerated Mobile Pages
In case you haven’t heard, mobile marketing is kind of a big deal. With the amount of mobile web traffic overtaking desktop usage, Google has made a major push over the last few years to prioritize mobile friendly sites.
It started with the dreaded "Mobilegeddon". As of April 2015, mobile friendly websites started getting higher prioritization in Google’s algorithms which results in better SERPS (search engine ranking positions). Is your site mobile friendly? Find out using the Google Mobile Friendly test.
Already have a mobile friendly site and want to perform even better? Introducing the latest web hotness, AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages). Google has teamed with the AMP open source project and started integrating AMP pages into their search results. You’ve probably already seen AMP pages and not even realized it.
Let’s look at an example of how AMP pages are integrated into the search results you see every day. We’ll take Notre Dame Football as an example. When searching for Notre Dame Football on a mobile device, you will get the following results:
The first large section with the schedule, news, standings and players is information drawn from the Google’s Knowledge Graph. In a follow up article, we will explore the Knowledge Graph and how to contribute and possibly be included in these highly visible results. Under the first section, note the following results for ‘Top Stories’:
I’m assuming that most users have seen these type of results before. However, most users will look right past the lightning bolt logo (depicted below) next to the website logo for each result.
This logo indicates that the story is an Accelerated Mobile Page or AMP. Try it yourself on your phone. I’ll wait. If you enter a topic that would have recent news stories written about it, chances are most, if not all the ‘Top Stories’ in the search results will be AMP pages. So what is AMP?
The goal of AMP is to take mobile friendliness to an even higher level by delivering a powerfully optimized, lightning quick version of pages on a website. This is done by building pages that:
- Utilize a CDN (content delivery network) to pull the framework
- Follows strict CSS rules
- Use proper schemas and canonical tags
- Adhere to certain file size limits
- Pass AMP validation requirements
Due to these restrictions, AMP pages are mostly relegated to blog and news type articles. It is also important to note that the AMP version is not the only form of that page available. By using certain meta tags (canonical and rel tags) in the code for the page, a full website template version is available in addition to the AMP version.
Completely confused as to how this all works?
Well, you are already viewing the AMP version of this article and you didn’t even know it. You may notice some slight differences from our main website template. This is common with AMP pages and is due to the strict requirements to validate an AMP page. To check out this story on the main website, click here.
I realize that some of this information may seem a bit technically for those who are not actively involved in web development or search marketing. If you are interested in exploring options for expanding your SEO with AMP, contact us. We would be pleased to discuss this topic in greater detail.
To get our latest articles when they are posted, please subscribe by e-mail or RSS.