Google Accelerated Mobile Pages Project (AMP) Explained
In February of 2016, Google announced its new Accelerated Mobile Pages project (AMP), which creates faster, prioritized mobile content searches.
Users have probably seen AMP pages being displayed within mobile search results as a specific column of AMP results lay at the top of its SERPs. Google AMPs are signified with a bolt symbol and were created to modify existing web pages for faster load times and improved user experience.
For users, the ability to share across multiple platforms remains available and the organic reading experience remains the same as viewing a Washington Post article on Google AMP will receive more organic content without the annoying pop-up ads.
When users are done with an article and want to read more, they can simply swipe to the next result on the top stories widget and get more from their mobile search than ever before. Mobile AMP, simply put, transforms web content into a high speed library acting under the directory of Google’s improved mobile search platform.
Publishers remain vexed about Google AMP as AMPs receive higher SERP rankings and only direct users to Google extension pages rather than the webmaster’s native webpage. Google AMPs are comparable to Facebook’s use of Instant Articles in many ways.
When the behemoth of internet publishing began to make moves to rid the market of annoying ads and many company’s revenue streams, Google acted to create a new open source and user friendly format that would allow any website to convert its existing webpage into an AMP format.
Yet, the fact lies that AMP pages are merely extensions of a Google domain page and many publishers fear that this is a move to further dominate the e-commerce of the web. Google contends that with will more effectively restore e-commerce streams.
Google AMPs have undoubtedly improved user experience as AMP articles load in less than a second on average, and rid many existing pages of annoying Java Script and Adware, awarding publishers with higher CTRs. Already, 150 million pages have converted to the Google AMP format with another 4 million results being added to the Google index weekly.
WordPress was one of the early adopters of the mobile AMP move and has since created generally faster ways and easy plug-ins to create efficient AMP conversion. For the 74% of other domains that haven’t adapted to the AMP conversion, their work will mostly be done by hand and will suffer in mobile SERPs as Google AMPs are more highly rewarded in search results. A number of other pug-ins are available for other websites, such as Yoast Glue and Automatic AMP, but now the race shall begin for the mass conversion of content to the AMP format.
In the end, the fact still remains that Mobile AMP does not seem to direct traffic to publisher’s native webpages and only to the Google master domain. While the move is a positive step in combatting Instant Article’s control over publishing content and the erosion of control that publisher’s’ have over their revenue stream, it also seems like a move for Google to reel in more control over web traffic.