As efforts across several industries continue to drive better and faster developments in the world of mobile internet browsing, a new player has been introduced and gradually grown in popularity over the past few months. Although not many people are familiar with Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) yet, they’re already changing the way mobile device users browse and read articles on a daily basis.
AMP HTML code is a new version of HTML language designed exclusively for this project. It’s simpler and shorter than standard HTML, with limited functionality but geared towards delivering content that you would usually find in news or blog articles – text, images, videos and, of course, adverts along with some simple branding. All in all, the optimised form of this code means AMPs can load almost twice as fast as the non-accelerated version of essentially the same page.
For some mobile websites, AMPs will not necessarily be needed in order to optimise the loading speed and performance of mobile pages.
“Well-designed, responsive websites can deliver the content they need almost instantly, even over a mobile connection, and without unnecessary clutter or excessive code,” says Easy Internet, an experienced web design company in Leicester with over 15 years in the business. “If you want to improve your users’ experience, you don’t necessarily need to use AMP but you do need to focus on mobile. That’s the biggest change we’ve seen in the last five years.”
The visual differences between AMPs and standard mobile-optimised website pages coded with standard HTML are not that striking. Although some elements may be taken out of the page’s code to significantly boost the time it takes for the page to load over a mobile data connection, the majority of the changes are unseen. In general, you might notice a distinct lack of clutter and more basic formatting when you directly compare the AMP version of a page to the standard mobile edition, but these changes are only subtle and tend to make the page easier to read.
Accelerated mobile pages can also have an impact on your organic search engine placements, which can make a significant difference to the success of your online business. Your pages will not be rewarded with higher Google positions because they use AMP code. However, loading speed on mobile does contribute directly to rankings, and if done properly, AMP is likely to improve this. In addition, any AMPs you have listed on organic mobile search results will be marked with a fairly distinctive AMP logo, indicating to users that the page is optimised. Images on those pages can also feed through directly to search results. These are both expected to boost click rates.
Overall, AMPs are definitely something to be aware of moving forward. They’re likely to be developed further given their initial success and the uptake of the project by many leading online publishers and news outlets. A good proportion of news articles you’ll see on Google results are now accelerated mobile pages, and we expect to see this trend continue. The most important thing for businesses is simply to ensure that mobile users are catered for one way of the other, in order to keep up with the demands of a mobile audience in 2016.