5 Accelerated Mobile Page (AMP) Tips from a Marketer
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) are the main component of a project established by Google, which creates an open standard for publishers to have their web pages load faster on mobile devices. This AMP project began late last year (October 2015), and was not only backed by Google but also other large websites like Twitter and WordPress.
Now that it has been a few months since the announcement, you might be wondering how this AMP project impacts marketing as an industry and business priority. This project ultimately aims to improve the mobile experience for users, since more people than ever are searching, shopping, reading, and experiencing websites on mobile devices and tablets. There are certainly some tips from a marketer’s perspective on ways to take action in the post-AMP world. First, let’s explore what AMP is and why it is relevant to you.
What is AMP and Why Is It Important?
Google claims that a page created with AMP HTML can load anywhere from 15 to 85% faster than the non-AMP version of that page. That is indeed a pretty impressive boost that would improve the quality of the experience for mobile users. Google has also made it easy for web publishers to convert their pages to HTML AMP with a tutorial that walks you through the creation of an AMP page.
One possible issue is, as you might guess, the stripping down of what scripts can be used is impacting online marketing—especially for those who rely on Java and other platforms for their current website. This may create some anxiety as to how to alter your existing strategy to accommodate AMP. While advertising with AMP in mind does take some adjustment, it is well worth considering.
Below is an example of Apple News, a new AMP friendly mobile feature. Users can see recent news stories that they are interested in right on a desktop screen on Apple mobile devices, getting them mobile-friendly information in a highly effective way that is gaining a lot of popular attention:
Below you can also see how AMP friendly pages look in Google’s mobile search results. It is no surprise that AMP pages are indeed higher ranking and get some SEO benefits as well. The red arrow points out the AMP footnote with a thunderbolt, meant to signify its fast loading speed:
Tips for Marketing with AMP
There are a few tips from a marketer’s perspective that make the transition to AMP fairly easy. As with any learning curve, you will need more information and step-by-step guidance on how to make your pages optimized AMP. I begin first with talking about where you can find this step-by-step guide and all of the finite details you will need in the beginning of this process. At this point, starting right at the AMP project website seems to be the consensus of industry experts, and I totally agree—it is a wealth of information to help you with absolutely anything you could need to get started:
Go right to the AMP project website
Luckily, with this big change, the AMP project website has compiled literally everything that you need to know about converting your pages so that they can become AMP friendly. Under their first instructional page, “Create Your First AMP Page” you will see a breakdown of everything you need to do to get started, including how to:
- Create Your AMP HTML Page
- Include an Image
- Modify Presentation and Layout
- Preview and Validate
- Prepare Your Page for Discovery and Distribution
- Final Steps Before Publishing
It sounds simple enough to start on the project page, but it really does make everything super straightforward and manageable.
Figure out what needs to be altered
Before you begin with the converting process, check with your web designers and graphics team (or whoever you had construct your website and advertisements) and see what currently requires Java or third-party scripts. Going through the process of inventorying your site and knowing what needs to look different on an AMP page will help the process go more smoothly, and you will understand the differences required for your mobile users much better.
Consider what it takes to be “discovered”
In some cases you will want to have both an AMP and a non-AMP version of your page, or you will have to consider third-party Meta data. This is often the case for news articles and blogs. In ordered to have the best possible search results you want to look into these cases closely and make sure your page is discoverable.
Make sure you get all necessary HTML
In order to benefit from these AMP pages, you will need to get the necessary HTML fro the project site directly (again, refer to tip #1—this should really be the first stop of this process). You can copy it directly from the AMP project page! If you’re unfamiliar with HTML or get nervous about including or altering any type of coding (it’s more common than you may think), you can check out our web development page to learn more or have us help.
Develop Content with AMP in mind
Once you have installed your AMP plugin (which will depend on the platform for your website) you can develop content specifically for your AMP sites. Since this project is fairly new, keep in mind that you may run into a few hiccups here and there, but for the most part, you want to be developing all new content with AMP in mind. This means keeping in mind that all new content you create should be able to load quickly and painlessly.
While the AMP project is still fairly new and will be continuously improved in the time to come, it is important to launch forward in thinking about this and making the transition to AMP pages and content. There are many benefits to keeping AMP in mind, including SEO and other ranking benefits. It is also, perhaps more importantly, a huge benefit to your mobile users.
As of now, the majority of AMP pages come from very large corporate websites and news sources, but soon more business sites are likely to be getting higher search rankings if they are AMP friendly. Make the transition now so that as Google rolls out more benefits for AMP pages, you are one of the early businesses to benefit. For a while Google has been leading the race for mobile optimization, and it is no surprise that Google, along with the backing several other large social sites, began the AMP project.
Have you converted your web pages to AMP? What do you think about the AMP project from a business standpoint? For a user’s standpoint? From a marketer’s standpoint? Let us know in the comments section below.