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Google Core Vitals 2021

Rolled out in June 2021, this algorithm update largely considers the fundamental structure of a website and how it is built and hosted. There are three Core Web Vitals Google encourages all website owners implement to enhance the user experience.

Loading – LCP (Largest Contentful Paint)

LCP can be improved through optimizing your website’s server, caching static HTML on your server, and optimizing/minimizing your CSS and JavaScript.

Interactivity – FID (First Input Delay)

The time it takes for the page to respond to clicks, scrolls, or keyboard input. An ideal measurement is less than 100 ms. Poor FID is caused by heavy JavaScript execution. Optimizing how JavaScript parses, compiles, and executes on your web page will directly reduce FID.

Visual Stability – CLS (Cumulative Layout Shift)

The shifting of text, links, pictures, ads, or other visual elements during the site’s loading process. For good user experience, CLS should be less than 0.1. A bad CLS score is usually the result of poor planning for how space on a website will be used, especially for items that take extra time to load. The browser should know how much space needs to be reserved for images, ads, and dynamically injected content. Images should be assigned an aspect ratio or static dimensions should be defined.

How This Update Affects SEO

At this point, no major changes are planned to the SEO services we offer as it relates to this update. The Core Web Vitals update is largely technical and has to do with a website’s code structure, load time, and server speed. We expect most website builders to adapt to it, if they haven’t started already.

The Difference Maker

This update is likely to have the biggest impact when you and your competition have fairly similar quality of content, links, etc. If your competitor’s site is loading faster, and responding quicker than yours, this update is likely going to help Google understand which site has the advantage.