Google AMP 101

Accelerated Mobile Pages

What is Google AMP?

Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) Project is an open-source initiative that eliminates sluggish mobile performance by infusing blazing speed into websites. The lightning-fast load speed of AMP pages is achieved by:

  • Pre-rendering content and preventing most custom JavaScript;
  • Caching web content within Google, removing the need to fetch a page from an external server; and
  • Adhering to mobile best practices, such as optimizing CSS and prioritizing visible content, to attain instant load speeds.

Why did Google launch the AMP initiative?

Google launched the AMP initiative in October 2015 to eliminate sluggish, lackluster mobile performance. The first phase of AMP was exclusively geared toward news publishers, as the case for mobile optimization was clear – speedy browsing meant more traffic, readers and ads displayed. The success of Google’s first phase prompted the expansion of AMP across the entire search universe. Today, if you’re an organization or business that relies on search as a revenue or traffic stream, Google AMP is a newfound solution to pair blazing-mobile speed and better searchability to increase user engagement.  And better engagement across the mobile web is a win-win for users, you and Google.

Does Google AMP maintain rich functionality and style?

Yes. Google AMPs maintain the same brand style – colors, rich images and overall look and feel – from your desktop or mobile website. They are just engineered for breakneck performance. The AMP component library – Google’s framework of features and development rules – is constantly evolving and expanding its capabilities. Google AMP features include:

  • E-commerce functionality
  • Dynamic content and product personalization
  • Display advertising
  • A/B testing
  • Analytics
  • Paywalls
  • Social and sharing
  • Audio and video

What are AMP components?

Google has created a library that provides add-on components that serve as the building blocks for extending the functionality of AMP, while maintaining AMP’s lightning-fast speed.

Does Google AMP create a barrier in the buyer journey?

No. Google AMP enhances the buyer’s experience, increasing engagement throughout the checkout process. Here’s a step-by-step process of the user journey using AMP:

  1. A user enters a search query.
  2. The matching results using Google AMP will be accompanied by a lightning-bolt logo, signaling to the user that the mobile experience is fast and user friendly.
  3. The user enters the AMP, which often loads in under a second and served from Google’s cache. The AMP experience looks just like the regular mobile page and maintains all the same functionality.
  4. Any subsequent action taken by the user – from adding a product to their cart or clicking a “contact us” button – seamlessly ushers them into the corresponding page located on the main mobile website.  

The user journey is continuous – from an AMP into the main mobile experience – and engineered for performance and traction. The user doesn’t know the difference – other than it’s blazing fast.

What are the benefits of Google AMP?

Google AMP improves mobile page speed and user experience – a combination that drives better business results. Here’s a list of the benefits and outcomes that AMP delivers:

  • In search results, a Google certification badge (lightning-bolt logo) accompanies your webpage
  • Blazing-mobile performance – nothing comes close to the load speed enabled by AMP
  • Access to a free Content Delivery Network
  • Clean, easy-to-navigate mobile pages – with the option of impactful advertising – that users engage with and tolerate
  • Increased user engagement, supported by reduced bounce rates, higher click through rates, ad viewability, more traffic and better business outcomes
  • Improved SEO as mobile speed is factored into Google’s page ranking algorithm

Is Google AMP just for news sites?

No. Google AMP has been rolled out to the entire search universe. If you’re an organization or business that relies on search as a revenue or traffic stream, Google AMP is for you.

What problem does AMP solve?

Mobile users expect and want fast-loading content – from a news article and a recipe to a product. Unfortunately, the mobile web is overwhelming slow, detracting users are reducing engagement. Google AMP is a solution that pairs blazing speed with relevant search queries to drive traffic and deliver an overall better experience for all parties – the user, the website and Google.

How important is mobile speed?

Very. The statistics supporting the importance of mobile speed are telling. Here’s two:

  • 40% of users abandon mobile sites taking longer than 3 seconds to load
  • Every 1-second delay it takes a page to load results in a 7% loss in conversions

Is AMP gaining traction?

Yes, Google AMP is experiencing rapid adoption. From news sites, such as CNN and The New York Times, to ecommerce companies, such as eBay and 1-800-Flowers, Google AMP is being embraced by a wide range of industry.