by Tim

02/06/2017

Google Analytics

AMPs Coming to AdWords Search Ads – What Does This Actually Mean?

What Are Accelerated Mobile Pages?

Anyone who has spent much time surfing the ‘net on their smartphone recently (pretty much most of the developed world) will be familiar with Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs). Of course, most users will be completely unaware that they are viewing an AMP, but the initiative is aimed squarely at them. The project was launched with the intention of improving the web experience for mobile visitors.

Why Are AMPs Good?

The project’s focus is on mobile load times and speeding them up. This is done by constructing pages with a stripped back form of HTML and making the page “lighter” i.e. only using the provided JavaScript library and avoiding third party tags.

Slow load times are the primary reason for high bounce rates and this is particularly true on mobile devices. Slow mobile sites not only deprive visitors of high-quality content but also deprive content publishers of visitors.

If a visitor is not willing to wait for a page to load, they’re also, unsurprisingly, less likely to add to conversion metrics too. Speeding mobile pages up benefits both parties – the visitor and the publisher.

Recently, Google announced that AMP landing pages would soon be available to AdWords search ads on mobile platforms as a beta feature.

What is The Benefit of AMPs as AdWords Mobile Final URLs?

Well, as we already know, slow load times can really impact ROI — we pay per click, not per visit and if the content on a page takes too long to load and the visitor abandons their request it will still cost just as much as a user that embarked on a 10-minute mega session.

With mobile search ads able to send traffic to /amp URLs we can expect to see the same positive effects on paid traffic as we have on organic traffic.

As Google have explained on their AdWords blog, a one second delay in mobile page loading time can reduce conversions on that page by up to 20%.

In addition, when a mobile page load time goes past three seconds, 53% of all visits will be abandoned.

In the case of all but the most mobile-optimised landing pages, a switch to AMP should lead to serious improvements in ROI on mobile search ads. For companies that rely on paid search traffic but and are yet to embrace AMPs, now is the time to get on board. Whilst there is some work in preparing a website to make use of AMPs, in terms of AdWords management it will be as simple as setting AMP pages as Mobile final URLs at ad-level.

Advertisers can request access to the beta now, but some criteria must be met. For a start, there must already be valid AMP versions of all AdWords landing pages by 30th June 2017.

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