Google Prioritizes Mobile Page Speed: Here’s What E-Commerce Retailers Need to Know
As consumers continue to shift toward mobile shopping, e-commerce retailers must take a hard look at site performance to remain competitive. And speed really does make all the difference, as 53% of mobile shoppers abandon websites after just three seconds of load time. If that’s not enough motivation, mobile page-load speed will soon impact organic search results.
Google announced that starting in July, mobile page speed will finally be a ranking signal. This move further underscores the search giant’s growing emphasis on catering to searchers using mobile devices. The algorithm update will reward retailers that deliver fast mobile experiences and, inversely, penalize those that do not.
Being mobile-friendly is no longer enough, and performance is paramount.
Google search is the primary touchpoint to discover, compare and buy online. Retailers, in turn, should rethink what makes for a successful digital strategy. Today, it’s all about making experiences effortless for shoppers, as doing so positively affects customer satisfaction and will soon impact where you rank on search.
The web is undergoing a resurgence — a rebirth, if you will — that’s confronting the challenges of a historically unreliable and slow mobile web. And thanks to the advent of new technologies — led by accelerated mobile pages (AMPs) and progressive web apps (PWAs) — retailers now have powerful, new ways to deliver immersive and fast experiences that reach and inspire shoppers.
AMP and PWA: What Do You Need to Know?
These technologies cater to user experience, providing a more effective way to captivate, convince and convert browsers into customers. So, what exactly are AMP and PWA, and how do these technologies work?
AMP is an open-source initiative, spearheaded by Google, that guarantees the fastest page-load speeds possible. AMPs are pre-cached pages, delivered to users from acquisition channels, such as Bing, Twitter, Google and LinkedIn. Loading instantly, AMP pages grab a user’s attention, increasing engagement and drawing them into the buying funnel.
But does speed on mobile really deliver return on investment?
As consumers, we have fleeting attention spans and every millisecond on mobile makes a difference. In fact, WompMobile partnered with Google to measure the impact of AMP for e-commerce retailers. From conversion rates increasing 105% to a 31% decrease in bounce rates, it was clear that faster page loads led to more sales.
PWAs, on the other hand, combine the discoverability of a website with the feel of a native app. By merely entering a URL or clicking a page from search results, users enter into an experience that captures the smooth navigation and features that we love in native apps with the convenience of a website. From push notifications and offline access to prompting users to add your brand's app icon to their home screen, PWAs deliver a next-generation shopping experience.
As the adage goes, the cost of inaction is far higher than the price of change.
Retailers recognize that the majority of their growth and traffic comes from mobile, but are concerned that the lion’s share of revenue is still generated on desktop. The upcoming change to Google’s algorithm is just one more reason why catering to mobile users is mission-critical.
Technologies like AMP and PWA offer a pathway to stay inline with where Google is headed and provide a mobile storefront that finally rivals the desktop.
Madison Miner is founder and CEO of WompMobile, a technology platform that converts websites to AMP and Progressive Web Apps.
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Madison Miner is founder and CEO of WompMobile, a technology platform that converts websites to AMP and Progressive Web Apps. The company services more than 8 million AMP pages and works with clients ranging from e-commerce retailers and publishers to enterprise businesses. Madison is a frequent speaker and has led presentations at signature Google events, including the annual AMP Conference. He’s covered topics ranging from AMP for e-commerce to the digital disruption that’s forcing retailers to rethink the status quo.