Building a Website
10 min read
Updated: May 04, 2020

What Are Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs) and How Can They Help Your Business?

When it comes to ranking high in the search engines and providing the best possible user experience, speed is your friend. When Google launched its mobile-friendliness update and made mobile page load speed a ranking factor, site owners understandably began looking for solutions.

The problem is that your main website might contain some elements that slow down it's loading on a mobile device. This is why AMPs were introduced and have risen in popularity.

Accelerated Mobile Pages

What is AMP?

Developed by Google in collaboration with Twitter in 2015, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP, for short) was thought to be created in response to Facebook’s Instant Articles. But, the platform has evolved into something much more powerful over the past several years. Google even announced in 2018 that it plans a push to add AMP technology to future web standards framework.

AMPs are essentially super-fast mobile pages for your website. In the most basic form, these are stripped-down HMTL pages that are meant to load on a mobile device at lightning-fast speed.

AMP is a free, open-source framework that allows for the creation of a page that works like your original one, but without all the bells and whistles that might slow it down. So, when you create an AMP version of your regular web page, there is an HTML tag placed on your page, and the AMP version is served to mobile device users.

Behind the scenes, the AMP framework has three main parts:

  • AMP HTML – The HTML version of AMP is a much leaner one than that used on your main webpage. There are stricter rules for what can and can’t be used as well as a requirement for a streamlined CSS.
  • AMP JS – AMP restricts the use of Javascript so that pages will load faster on mobile networks. Instead, AMP provides you with a host of simple-to-use components that allow for the layouts and animations you want for your mobile page.
  • AMP CDN – Also referred to as “AMP Cache,” this is a crucial component of AMP that grabs your content from a proxy-based content delivery network (CDN) and caches it for the fastest delivery possible.

parts of AMP framework

Benefits of AMP for Your Business Website

How fast your website loads can be critical to your business success. According to KISSmetrics, roughly 40% of people are going to abandon a web page if it is taking more than three seconds to load.

Let’s assume your eCommerce site is making $100,000 per day. Just a one-second delay in your page loading could cost your small business as much as $2.5 million each year. That’s a lot of lost sales due to something that is entirely preventable!

So, what are the benefits of using AMP for your website? It turns out, there are several important ones.

  1. Your pages will load faster.

    We said this before, but it bears repeating: page load speed is going to help you achieve your business goals. You can have amazing content on your pages, but no one will see it if your bounce rate is through the roof.

    One study found that a single second delay in mobile browser speed can increase bounce rates by up to 8.3% and lower your conversion rates by 3.5%. AMP can help you avoid becoming one of these sad statistics.

  2. Better mobile browser visibility.

    Google has begun displaying AMP results in organic search engine listings. You can see which results are AMP by the tiny green lightning bolt symbol below the headline.

    Interestingly, this is an eye-catching symbol and can help improve your click-through rate. Users will begin to learn that these are mobile-optimized pages, which won’t cause them tons of frustration after a click.

    mobile browser visibility

  3. Improved mobile search engine rankings.

    Statista reports that more than half of all searches are now done on mobile devices in the United States. Moreover, the number of smartphone users in this country has skyrocketed to 211 million this year.

    The good news is that there is a strong correlation between your site’s speed and conversion rates. Although Google hasn’t made AMP a search engine rating factor yet, speed is. Also, any site that is mobile-friendly will tend to outrank one that isn’t.

    There is a common misconception that AMP only works with Google. This isn’t the case. Google spearheaded the project but doesn’t own it. Users can access AMP pages via Bing, Twitter, Yahoo, LinkedIn, Baidu, and more.

  4. Flexible ad support.

    Many businesses and blogs monetize their sites with ads. If you compare the desktop vs. mobile version of some of these sites, you might notice that the mobile site comes packed with a ton of distractions. These extras, such as social share buttons, popups, and sidebars, can lower your ad conversion rates.

    ad support

    Fortunately, your streamlined AMP version will have many of these elements stripped out – and keep your money-making ads. Even better, there are a ton of popular ad networks that are ready to work with your AMP-optimized pages for mutual gain. Some of those include:

    • Google Doubleclick
    • Google Adsense
    • Amazon A9
    • AOL AdTech
    • Taboola
    • AdReactor
    • Flite
  5. Easy visitor tracking.

    It’s always helpful to know how visitors are getting to your website. Fortunately, tracking this activity and other site performance issues is fairly simple with AMP because it has analytics tools.

    With the AMP platform, you can use tag manager analytics to track essential data such as conversions/clicks, visitor counts, link and video tracking, and new vs. returning visitors.

Are There Any Drawbacks to Using AMP?

The most common reason that some digital brands have taken a pass on AMP is that it takes a bit of effort to AMP-ify your web pages. While mobile undeniably presents a business with opportunities, it also requires a thoughtful approach.

To experience the benefits of AMP, your digital marketing team will need to create and maintain assets that are separate from your main webpage. Since AMP doesn’t make a request to your servers each time but rather caches content, your analytics and tracking will also need tweaking to ensure accurate figures.

Is AMP a Good Fit for Your Website?

AMP has been around for several years, so you won’t be a pioneer if you decide to use it. Digivate reports that roughly 16,000 mobile-optimized pages are rendered with AMP each day. Some of the top brands that are using AMP include The Guardian, The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC, and Financial Times.

Since it’s been launched, it’s generally accepted that media sites do well on AMP. Since the majority of the content on these sites is static, they can get a significant boost in organic traffic with this tool. Even for eCommerce sites with more dynamic content, there can be some improvements in performance with AMP. Optimizing your website for mobile devices shouldn’t be a hard job for you as there are many mobile web design companies ready to help you rank higher on Google.

At Comrade Digital Marketing, we’ve used AMP for several clients in the past who have seen impressive results. In short, if this is available to you, it’s something we recommend you explore as another way to get additional eyes on your website and increase your conversions.

Contact us today for more information about AMP and our other web marketing services.

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About the Author
Ivan Vislavskiy
Ivan Vislavskiy is Comrade Digital Marketing’s co-founder and fearless leader, spearheading the agency’s production department.
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