What Are Web Vitals? The Essentials You Need to Know

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September 3, 2022


Core web vitals are some of the top factors for determining search engine rankings on Google. By monitoring and improving web vitals, you can increase your organic search rankings and bring more visitors to your website.

If you haven't considered web vitals metrics, now is the time to catch up. Your website could be falling behind if you aren't paying attention to your web vitals.

To learn more about them and how you can use them to improve your website, keep reading.

What Are Core Web Vitals?

Core web vitals are a set of website metrics that consider speed, responsiveness, and visual stability. Each of these metrics helps determine the user experience of a website.

Types of Core Web Vitals

There are three core web vitals. Each one of these web vitals helps Google determine how good your webpage experience is:

  • Largest Contentful Paint
  • First Input Delay
  • Cumulative Layout Shift

Every web vital tells us something different about your web page. And, each one is important to track and improve.

Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)

The first web vitals metric is Largest Contentful Paint (LCP). This web vital measures the time in seconds that it takes from the page to start loading to when the largest webpage element pops up on the screen.

The goal of measuring this web vital is to determine the estimated amount of time that it takes for the main elements of a web page to load. In other words, it determines how fast your web page pops up for visitors to use.

The lower your LCP is, the better your website will rank:

  • 2.5 seconds or less is good
  • Between 2.5 and 4 seconds needs improvement
  • More than 4 seconds is poor

Find out your LCP score and determine whether you need to make improvements. You may need to make images smaller or get a quicker server.

First Input Delay (FID)

First Input Delay (FID) is another web vitals metric that considers time. It measures the time in milliseconds between the first time a user interacts with your site to when the browser reacts to that interaction.

For example, a user may press a button. The time between the visitor pressing that button and the browser taking them to the related web page is the FID.

This measurement lets search engines know about the responsiveness and interactivity of your website. If visitors have to wait around for the browser to respond, they are more likely to click off the site and never come back.

The lower your FID score, the better your website will rank:

  • 2.5 seconds or less is good
  • Between 2.5 and 4 seconds needs improvement
  • More than 4 seconds is poor

If you need to improve your First Input Delay, you should consider reducing JavaScript execution time. You could also look at how third-party code is affecting your loading speed.

Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)

Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) measures the cumulative score of all of the unexpected layout shifts that occur while a visitor is looking at your web page. If any page elements move around while a visitor is looking at them, that may negatively impact the ranking of your site.

If your website is altering text and images, you should consider how images and ads are negatively affecting your page's synchronous loading ability.

Why Are Web Vitals Important?

Every website owner should care about how to measure web vitals. Even if you don't care about making a good user experience, Google does.

So, you should devote some time to learning how to improve web vitals and their effect on your website. If anything, you should at least hire someone else to make the necessary improvements.

If you're wondering why you should care, there are several reasons.

Visitors Like Websites That Load Quickly

First, your website visitors love websites that load quickly. They prefer the ability to use websites quickly on any device they want from any location they're at.

If your website isn't meeting their expectations, they will click off and you will lose a sale. Worse, they're not likely to come back later.

If you're worried about making money, you should be worried about quality web vitals.

Search Engines Monitor Core Web Vitals

Second, core web vitals are officially a ranking factor for search engines now. Google isn't going to recommend websites that have a poor user experience. If users find that Google isn't providing the right results, they're going to go to competitors for the answers to their burning questions.

Over time, the importance of web vitals is only going to grow more. So, you should get ahead of the trend and make necessary improvements now.

Visitors Will Stay on Your Website

Third and last, having better web vitals is going to result in fewer users resorting back to the search page to find other websites. A good webpage experience is going to entice searchers to stay on your site for longer, which could lead to a lead or a sale.

In fact, Google is looking at the time searchers are spending on pages because of this fact.

If Google finds that users are clicking on then quickly clicking off of your website, they may drop your rank a few spots.

Overall, you may not personally care about web vitals for your own website. But, you should care about the future of your business, which hinges on how well these vitals perform.

Track Your Web Vitals Metrics

Web vitals are essential for any website that needs to get higher on search engine rankings.

If you need web vitals advice, we can help you with real-time monitoring of your web vitals with our embeddable performance meter, Loado SDK.

Sign up today to get started.

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