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Online Marketing

Site Speed: What SEOs Need to Know #AskGoogleWebmasters

We’re going to be answering questions on the topic of speed that were submitted with the hashtag ask Google webmasters on Twitter. So, let’s start off with a question from row Heat: what is the ideal page speed of any content for better ranking on search? Oh you’re, asking me that question okay.

So basically we are categorizing pages, more or less as like, really good and pretty bad. So, there’s not really like a threshold in between it’s just like we are more or less roughly categorizing the speed experience for users and how are we actually doing that? Where do we get the data from yeah? That’s that’s important, so we mostly get data from two places. On the one hand, we try to calculate a theoretical speed of a page using lab data, and then we also use real field data from users.

Who’ve actually tried to use those pages and that field data is similar to the chrome user. Experience report, data cool, so we are having like hypothetical data and practical data, so we don’t really have a threshold to give away. But basically the recommendation, I would say, is just make sites fast for users. That’s what it boils down to that sounds good yeah. The next question comes from Olga and Olga is wondering if a website’s mobile speed is best looked at using the test, my site tool, the GT, metrics tool or PageSpeed insights.

Hmm, that’s a really good question. What’s the most important tool for SEO, we have multiple tools that measure multiple things and I can understand that that can be kind of confusing at times in general. These tools measure things in slightly different ways, so what I usually recommend is taking these different tools. Getting the data that you get back from that and using them to discover kind of low-hanging fruit on your webpages, so things that you can easily improve to really give your page a speed bump how’s that sound.

No, that sounds pretty good and also the tools differently. Like aimed right some some of these tools like test my side is pretty high level, so, like everyone understands roughly, what’s going on there, whereas GT matrix is a lot more technical and PageSpeed insights. I think it’s kind of in the middle of that so depending on who you are catering to who you’re trying to give this report to to get things fixed, you might use one or the other, so figuring out what is the low-hanging fruit and using the tool That gives you the best insight into that for the audience that you’re trying to convince.

Is it a sea level? Is it a other marketer? Is it someone from the tech side like this is a developer? Then you probably take a different tool. Next question comes from owner owner is asking: I am testing an almost-empty page on dev tool audits and it usually gives me minimum results which are 0.8 milliseconds for everything and 20 milliseconds for fij what it’s fed. First, input delay. First, input delay, of course, but sometimes it gives worse results for TTI, FCI and Phil.

Okay, let’s talk about these metrics fit. We have covered first input delay. Tti is time to interactive. That’s when you can first interact with the page and FCI is first cpu idle, which means that there’s no more JavaScript work or other work that needs to be done by the CPU. So it’s the same page same code, different numbers. Why would that happen? Well, first things: first, these measurements aren’t perfect right.

So if it’s between 0.8 milliseconds and 20 milliseconds 20 milliseconds is a lot more than 0.8, but it’s still quite a short amount of time. If you think about it, you roughly have 10 milliseconds for a single frame to draw so yeah 20 milliseconds isn’t too bad, so you will always see some some basically noise in that measurement and also don’t get too hung up on these metrics. Specifically, if you see that there’s a perceptible problem and there’s actually like an issue that your site stays like working on the main thread and doing CPU work for a minute or 20 seconds, that’s what you want to investigate if it’s 20 milliseconds, it’s probably fine! Our next question comes from Drew and drew asks us what is or are best metric or metrics to look at when you want to decide if a page is fast or slow, and why or why not? Would you just look at things like FCP, which is first content full pained FMP, which is first meaningful paint, instead of just the scores that these tools give you Wow? I don’t know, Martin.

You need to tell me some more about that right. Okay, so I guess the question here really boils down to what’s the metric that you should look at and that’s a really tricky one, because I guess it depends on the side. It’s the typical. It depends answer if you have just a website where people are reading. Your content and not interacting as much then I think, first meaningful paint or first content fool paint, it’s probably more important than first interactive delay or, first sorry, first input delay or time to interactive.

But if it’s a really interactive web application, where you want people to immediately jump in and do something, then probably that metric is more important, so don’t try to break it down, and that brings us to the scores. The problem in this course is they’re. Oversimplifying things. Aren’t they yeah, I it sounds like it. I mean all of these measurements sound like they’re, they’re, measuring different things and ultimately trying to understand what what a user would perceive when they access the page, so their score might be.

I guess a simple way to look at it overall, but it’s probably not all of the details that you need. It just gives you a ballpark. Really it’s like how fast is this page 5? What does that mean? It doesn’t really convey me, doesn’t it so, I would say like use that, to figure out how you’re roughly doing and then use the specific insights, the different tools give you to figure out where you have to improve or what isn’t going so well.

Wow yeah sounds like speed, is a tricky topic and you kind of have to know what’s what you’re measuring so that you can take action on the right things yep. So would that kind of explain why there is no simple number that Google is just giving yeah? So that definitely explains it because then, if you think about it, you can’t break down speed into one simple number. It is a bunch of factors if I’m painting really quickly, but my app is all about interaction.

It’s a messenger, so I show everything I show the message history, but if I try to answer the message that I just got and it takes me 20 seconds until I actually can tap on the input field and start typing, is that fast not really, but is It so important that I can use the contact form on the bottom of a blog post within the first 10 seconds. Not necessarily is it so? What how would you put that into a number you don’t? So I guess it’s hard speed.

Speed sounds hard. What what do you think will this get easier? I guess it will get easier, but it will never go to a point where you just have a score that you optimize for and be done with it right. It is such a broad topic that it’s really hard to break that down into like one number. Okay, so you imagine, the more advanced people will continue to focus on the the kinda, metrics and counting milliseconds and others will look at kind of a bigger overview picture.

I guess so, and together will try to find ways to improve the speed of the pages overall. I think browsers also doing a lot of work to make things faster in general and easier to understand, but, generally speaking, you will still need to go and do the work of figuring out. What matters to you, your audience and your website right is it interactive. Is it content? Full panes depends that sounds cool yeah.

So I expect more questions on speed on the hash tag. Ask Google webmasters and, as we get those questions, we’ll ask an expert like Marcin, who knows all of these three-letter abbreviations and who can help us figure out, which ones are the right ones. So thanks for submitting all of these questions and hopefully see you again on one of the future episode. Thank you very much for having me and thanks for all the questions.


 

Categories
Online Marketing

Multiple H1 Headings: How to Handle Them for SEO & Accessibility? #AskGoogleWebmasters

Today’s question is from Marcus Chaepelli Marcus is asking. Can we have a clear answer to the question how to handle headings and accessibility? I see a lot of multiple H1’s ( all, but one are usually hidden ) out there on the web. Everybody treats it differently and stuff like the tag. So this is a pretty common question and it’s pretty straightforward.

Our systems don’t have a problem when it comes to multiple H1 headings. On a page, That’s a fairly common pattern on the web. We use headings to better understand the context of different parts of a page Having clear semantically. Understandable headings is useful in understanding any given page. However, We have to work with the web as we find it and a lot of it isn’t semantically structured at all For users.

The difference is minimal. Both kinds of pages can be extremely relevant to a question that they have In turn. Our systems aren’t too picky and we’ll try to work with the HTML as we find it, be it one H1 heading multiple H1 headings or just styled pieces of text without semantic HTML at all. In Short, when thinking about this topic SEO shouldn’t be your primary objective. Instead think about your users, If you have ways of making your content accessible to them, be it by using multiple H1 headings or other standard HTML constructs, then that’s not going to get in the way of your SEO efforts.

I hope you found this answer useful And, if there’s anything else, we can answer for you. In short, article form, please send us your questions using the # AskGoogleWebmasters hashtag on Twitter, so that we can include them in one of the future articles To stay in the loop make sure to subscribe to the blog and see you next time.


 

Categories
Online Marketing

Web Performance: SEO Mythbusting

Myth busting with me today Is Ada Rose, Cannon and you’re working for Samsung. Is that right? What do you do at Samsung? So for Samsung? I’M a developer advocate for the web browser Samsung Internet Samsung Internet is a web browser for Android phones.

You can get it from the Play Store, but not a lot of people have heard about it. So there’s lots. What I do is trying to raise awareness, but more importantly than that, What I’m trying to do is advocate for the web as a platform to try and encourage developers to build for it and to Make sure it lasts long into the future. As a great and healthy platform for people to build stuff with, I love to have you here, because I want to talk to you about the SEO Versus performance and usability on the web, and I think we need to get some stuff out of the way right.

So will you say what is the most important bits and pieces that you would like people to focus on more when building web stuff? So I have a huge passion for ensuring that That the web remains great for everyone around the world, Not just on people using the latest handsets and on desktop computers, Because most people aren’t people are using devices from years ago and low-end sub $ 100 devices, where, Frankly, today, the the modern web is just not even reaching them There’s a fantastic talk from Alex Russell Who goes into the the reality of people with phones that are less than $ 100 And yeah.

That’S a that’s! A fantastic one. You’D have the naive thought that, as time goes on, that phones are getting steadily better and at a bottom of the line phone is Nowadays is just as good at the top of line phone four years ago, when they’re, not It’s just getting wider and wider Wider. The chasm is opening, rather than anything else, What was really awesome. I heard recently Google was doing performance metrics into Into their ratings for search results.

I don’t So was this front-end web performance like render speed, making sure it’s not janky, or is this just Making sure that a page loads really quickly? So it is a little… It’S a it’s a tricky one, because we have so many metrics right. We have Time to first bite. We have time to interactive, We have time to first meaningful paint, and then you have like the frame rates and stuff.. Now Googlebot, which is the tool that basically fetches the data and renders your website for for Search Indexing.

We don’t really interact that much with the page, So we can’t really get like figure out if your scroll is smooth on something like that, but we do get the rendering bits. So we can tell you, when the page becomes responsive to inputs, when the content is ready for the user to consume, So we’re looking at the blend of these kind of modes Yeah of performance. Does that make sense? It does make sense.

So do you have any other qualms with like how SEO influences the daily work of a web developer? So a friend of mine recently rebuilt her site using React. She was very excited about it and and seemed to get quite good to client side performance Once it all loaded. Unfortunately, when she sent it out to her company’s Team to which does SEO analysis, they came back with an answer of. We love your site.

It’S really good, But you’ve basically don’t appear in the rankings, even though she could show them that look right there. It’S on Google Is Google engaging with people who do SEO analysis to ensure that They’re running up-to-date metrics, the similar ones to Google to ensure that even a heavily client-side rendered page, and They can feel confident that it is being measured. Well, So we can’t really Fix what people are doing in terms of what they were tools.

They’re using or something, But what we do want is we want to open this black box of SEO for everyone, So we’re having this conversation web developers We’re having this conversation with Seo and tool makers and we provide a bunch of metrics and tools as well. So we have search console that gives you a bunch of insights and how you’re doing in search so that you’re, not relying on someone else. Basically, sticking the finger in the wind and Reading the stars and stuff, and we also.

We also want to make sure that people are understanding that blanket statements like JavaScript’s going to kill your SEO or you cannot use, React or Angular that that’s not necessarily the best way of doing it. It’S a really comfortable answer, probably mmm. It’S not the right answer. Sometimes All right so at Chrome, Dev Summit. I saw your great talk on SEO in the web. Thank you, And one thing you mentioned was the the rendering for By Googlebot to actually process a JavaScript heavy site could take up to a week to happen.

Does this mean that JavaScript heavy sites are effectively getting penalized in Google Search results right, They’re, not getting penalized, so they are ranking just fine, but the indexing stage is where the problem is because, as you say, we are processing by putting them first into a rendering Queue and then eventually, As we have the resources available, We are rendering them and if the resources take a while to actually render That means that we cannot refresh the content in the index as quickly so News sites might want to look into that.

But then again you have usability issues anyways right, Yes right and that’s because that’s bad for the user. We try to find search results that are good for the users and If a page takes ages to load. That is not a good experience for me. So you want to fix that because of the users, not necessarily just because of the crawler. So if a page is Built using, I know I have a bit of a bias against these JavaScript heavy front-end client-side Rendered pages, because they’re terrible for everyone who doesn’t have like an iPhone or latest Pixel, or something Yeah or a desktop computer.

But anyway, for these sites, if the way they make their money is delivering fresh content daily. Does this mean that the content in the search results may actually be like out of date? For them They might be lagging? Then? Yes, absolutely And I think again, like it’s very important to get the users a great experience, and I don’t think you can do that when you are Heavily relying on client-side rendering, because good Devices might be really old, So yeah one way of working around.

Unless you want to Properly fix this and do hybrid, rendering or server-side rendering One way around of that is to do dynamic, rendering and basically like give us a static rendered version of your page for the crawler So that we can index it quicker. But that’s not making the user usability and user experience problems going. So what do you say it’s generally safer to rely more on on latest HTML and CSS, Knowing that they degrade more gracefully than JavaScript? Yes, Don’t speak! If you look at the the tristar of Technology that we have in the web platform like HTML, CSS and JavaScript, HTML and CSS are just more resilient than JavaScript, and so Relying on JavaScript, too heavily is always going to probably get you into trouble with certain ways And spotty network connections and stuff, So I would say, use polyfills use, progressive enhancement, use what the web platform offers you and use JavaScript responsibly Yeah.

It’S really great to hear, especially from a Googler that, like reducing reliance on JavaScript and Taking advantage of good HTML and CSS, where it’s available can can actually wonders for your SEO. Absolutely Ada. Thank you so much for being here and talking to me about performance and SEO, and I do you have a feeling that SEO and web developers can work together nicer or is there still…? I think, as long as the goals of what people are trying to accomplish are clear and we’re not just like resorting to auguries or looking at the stars to work out what Google is thinking, then it’s going to Enabled developers to actually build sites that make sense And take advantage of that platform, Anything Google can do to ensure that the web works for everyone and not just in the wealthy Western web, then It’ll be really really fantastic.

Fantastic closing words. Thank you so much for being here. Thank you This just in the next episode of SEO. Myth-Busting is going to be about SEO in the age of frameworks, Jason Miller, and I will talk about what that entails. So stay tuned on this blog Subscribe to Google webmasters and see you soon.


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Categories
Online Marketing

SEO Mythbusting 101

I don’t know about people say a lot of things out there about how to make your website it stand in the top result, but I don’t really know how to achieve that. You know right, fair enough. That’S a that’s a really good question: how to achieve that and I think that’s a perfect introduction into what we’re trying to do here we’re trying to like bust these myths.

What can I help you with? What are the questions that come to your mind? Okay? So, let’s start with something simple: what it’s a search engine all right, so a search engine is a platform of service or program whatever you want to call it that basically goes through the internet content and tries to catalog it. It works a little bit like in the library right, so you probably go to a library and ask the librarian.

Where can I find a book on topic X right, that’s what you do and then normally it doesn’t take you to basically go through all the books. In the library you just ya, get the right books and that’s what search engines do for you. We find the right content for your purpose, all right, but I went when he’s heard of search engines. I also heard this word called crawling. Is that a thing? That’S a thing so the way that we are doing this or search engines do this is by first going through the entire internet and we have links from one page to the other yeah.

So we are using that we start somewhere some URLs and then basically follow links from there on. So we are basically crawling our way through the Internet, one page by page, more or less, and then once we have, these pages have found them have grabbed the content. From the Internet, we need to understand it. We need to figure out what is this content about and what purpose does it serve? So then that’s the second stage which is indexing.

So then we figure out. So this page is about ice cream. This page is about ice cream in Miami. This page is about marmalade and stuff like that, and then the last step is, if you type something in you don’t type in. I want this particular thing here. You just go like. I need ice cream ice cream online. Midian right, yes, you got it, so we then basically look into our index and find the ones that are serving this purpose.

And then we try to figure out, which is the one that serves these purposes perfectly or best, and then we rank these higher than the others and show you the example, the examples that we found from the index. So how do you know which one is which results are more relevant to a given user? That’S a really good question. We have over 200 signals to do so. So we look at things like the title: the Meta Description, the actual content that you’ve got on your page images links all sorts of things.

Well right, it’s a very complicated question to answer what ranks you best but yeah. We look at the bunch of signals now, if you could give me like. You know, like top three things, that I should consider. What would that be right, so us being developers originally, you probably want me to say. Oh, I use this framework or use that framework. Yeah, that’s not how it works. You have to have really good content, and that means you have content have to have content that serves a purpose for the user.

It’S something that users need and or one optimally they need it and want it. Okay, like ice cream, so if you’re, if your content says where you are, what you do, how you? How you help me with what I’m trying to accomplish? That’S fantastic! If you just have a page that says like we are a fantastic company and we have plenty of products, that’s not serving a purpose, so you want to make sure to serve the purpose of the people who you want to attract and get who you want to Interact with your content, and you want to make sure that you’re using words that I would be using if you use a very specific term for your ice cream, let’s say like smooth cream 5000 or something like that.

I’M not I’m not going to search for that because I don’t know about I’m just going to go like I need ice cream, it’s good to mention it somewhere, so that I know. If I look for that trademark, I find it as well okay, but if I, if I’m exploring ice cream around me, I don’t know what particular ice cream there is, if there’s like a specific brand fantastic, but that’s not what I’m looking for so speak the language That I’m using so you’re you’re saying more.

Like a page, it’s like an exactly you wouldn’t when when we to meet and you have a fantastic product or I have a fantastic four, I wouldn’t go like yeah blurp master 5000. It’S fantastic and you’re like yeah. It doesn’t say it does that do all right, so do that, do an elevator pitch and help us. Okay, put you in contact with the right people, so content is number one priority. Oh, could you mention another two things that are important for this yeah you’re going to love them because they are technical, so the second biggest thing is make sure that you have meta tags that describe your content.

So I have a Meta Description. Okay, because that gives you the possibility to have a little snippet in the search results that let people find out, which of the many results might be the ones that help them the best and have page titles that are specific to the page that you are serving. So don’t have a title for everything. The same title is bad. If you have titles that change with the content you’re showing that is fantastic and frameworks, have ways of doing that so consult the documentation, but there’s definitely something something that helps with the content and the last bit is performance.

Herot right, yeah performance is fantastic. We’Re talking about it constantly, but we’re probably missing out on the fact that this is also good for being discovered online. Our so performance is not just making my website faster, but it’s also making my website more visible to others, correct okay, because we want to make sure that the people clicking on your search was like clicking on your page yeah, getting this content quickly.

So that’s one thing that we want to make sure as well, so we’re it’s one of the many signals that we are looking at, but also it just helps you use this right. They get happier. If I want ice cream really badly, then I get the page quicker, that’s fantastic yeah! So if you want to look at performance, I highly recommend looking into hybrid rendering or server-side rendering again, because that gets the content quicker to the users.

Usually right also, you might have BOTS that don’t run JavaScript so Googlebot. Does that, but not everyone else. Does it necessarily? So you want to make sure to probably figure out something like dynamic rendering, if you don’t want to make code changes, because I understand we’re all pressed for time. We have lots of bugs and and features too to fulfill and work through. So if you can’t change the code dynamic, rendering might be something that gets you there.

Okay, if there’s rendering shoes with your content. But besides that, I would say definitely look into performance. Optimization get the content quicker, get the first content full paint in there quicker optimize. Your servers optimize your caching strategies make sure that your script doesn’t have to run for, like 60 seconds, to fetch everything that you need. I know yeah, so those are things that you should definitely look into, and I guess performance is something that pretty much everyone in the developer community is looking at.

Certainly yes or they should at least they should. I hope that they do okay, so we already discussed, like all these basics around SEO and search engines and how to position my my website in the top search results. Now the question is: why is it so important for companies to rank like like in the top results right, so you’re you’re a web developer right? Yes, your build stuff on the internet. Yeah.

Do you want people to use it? Certainly, yes, certainly right, so in order to make sure that people can use that they have to know about it, and unless you are probably one of the really big players might not, and even for the big players, if they launch something new, you might not know About it and you’re not looking specifically for products you’re looking for something that serves a purpose for you, okay, I want to know how I built this thing with a framework I want to know where to find the best ice cream and the place I am in.

I want to find the cutest dogs and poppers online so, like I have a purpose, I don’t know who serves this purpose necessarily. So if you build the best ice cream, PWA ever in, let’s say Medellin. Is that how you profess? So if you build the best PWA to order ice cream online in midian, then I don’t. I don’t know about that, especially if I come as a tourist. But if I type that into a search engine like order ice cream in medicine, and then it goes like hey this, this PWA does this trick yeah you want to be the the first or the first couple of because I’m not going to go to page 99 And go like oh yeah.

This might be the perfect thing, because Google and other search engines are trying to like figure out what is the best for this purpose and then show me those up front and then I might pick from those because normally they’re pretty good. I think that covers have all the questions I have fantastic, so you feel like ready to build that, certainly excellent. That is so cool. Thank you. So much for being here.

Thank you, my guests, and I hope that this this helps other developers as well and developers and se owes can be friends. I think I think so yeah I think so. Thank you. Oh, are we still on please stay tuned for another episode of SEO: myth busting. Next time with soos Hinton we’ll talk about what is Googlebot so come back again and read what happens?


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