Recently, Google announced some upcoming AMP changes for 2017. Since this year has already seen the launch of the mobile first index, it may prove important to learn just what these changes are. Accelerated Mobile Pages are becoming more and more important, both because of Google’s internal developments and because of the increasing accessibility of mobile devices in the first place.
An Interactive URL
Typically, when a mobile device finds an AMP page through Google and clicks through, the URL shown in the browser is still a Google one, not a direct link. Often, the URL of the overall domain will be shown at the top of the page, but this can’t be clicked on or interacted with. As a generic domain, it also means you can’t simply copy and paste the URL elsewhere, which many feel makes such pages harder to share organically via social media.
The new changes, however, will seek to display the actual URL and ensure they are click-able, so as to make them easier to share and navigate. There’s still no confirmation on how exactly this will happen, however. Google may still require the loading of AMP pages through its own domain, to main pre-rendering and the high loading speeds mobile users expect, but this is at least something to consider.
How Does This Affect SEO?
When it comes to website optimisation, most platforms have nothing to worry about, as the new changes only serve to improve the existing structure. Currently, AMP pages still work very much like you would expect them to. So long as you’re targeting the right keywords and building a strong link database, your pages are appearing in the search engine results pages.
However, the real possibilities lie in generating shareable content. Mobile users like things that are quick and easy to share. Normally, this can be done via built in buttons to share on facebook or twitter, for example, but copying and pasting a link is still something that many webmasters would appreciate. This, for instance, is how people typically share links on a one-to-one basis, as opposed to the mass audience method of public posting.
The User Experience
It also makes pages easier to bookmark, so users can instantly recognise the right page by seeing your URL (rather than a list of Google domains). Again, this doesn’t hinder your organic traffic and online visibility, but it does greatly influence how customers experience your website, as well as their ability to return to any given page.
As for the issue of loading AMP URLs without Google’s preloading techniques, there is still some discussion. Could, for example, a few extra seconds of loading generate a higher bounce rate? It’s well known that mobile users expect a very quick load process and, if this is something other websites offer, yet you do not, you could lose to the competition.
For now, it is still too early to tell, but it is certainly something worth keeping an eye on over the next year.