Core Web Vitals are a set of metrics that measure the user experience of a website. These metrics are focused on three key areas of user experience: loading speed, interactivity, and visual stability.
Improving these metrics can help ensure that a website provides a good user experience for visitors. This can help with search engine rankings and lead to more traffic and engagement on the website. So, let us explain what these metrics are and how you can improve them!
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
The first thing we want to explain is Largest Contentful Paint or LCP. LCP is a metric that measures the loading speed of a website – the time it takes for the main content of a page to load. A good LCP score is 2.5 seconds or less.
First Input Delay (FID)
Next we have First Input Delay (FID) which measures the interactivity of a website. It refers to the time it takes for a page to become interactive after a user first interacts with it. A good FID score is 100 milliseconds or less.
Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
Finally, Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) is a metric that measures the visual stability of a website. It indicates how much the layout of a page shifts during loading, and it’s the third crucial factor in determining the user experience. The ideal CLS score is 0.1 or less.
How to Improve Core Web Vitals
If you want to improve your core web vitals and, with that, your website’s user experience and usability, we’ll give you some of our best tips.
Large images can significantly impact the loading speed of a page. To improve Core Web Vitals, you can optimize the size and format of your images, and use lazy-loading techniques to defer the loading of images until they are needed. We suggest compressing your images to be under 120 KB.
Reduce the Number of Third-Party Scripts
Third-party scripts, such as ads and social media widgets, can add significant overhead to a page and delay the loading of the main content. To minimize their impact, limit the number of third-party scripts on a page and use techniques like sandboxing, subresource integrity, and content security policy to prevent them from causing issues.
Minimize the Use of Disruptive Ads & Designate a Space for Ads
Ads that expand or animate on a page can cause layout shifts and delays in interactivity, impacting Core Web Vitals. To minimize the impact of ads, use techniques like prefetching, preloading, and lazy-loading to improve the loading speed of ads, and avoid using ads that are disruptive to the user experience.
Ads inserted into a page after it has loaded can cause layout shifts, affecting Core Web Vitals. A way to prevent this is by reserving space for ads by adding empty ad placeholders to the page layout so that the ads have a designated space.
Use Browser Caching
Browser caching allows a browser to store frequently-used resources on the user’s device, so that they don’t have to be downloaded again each time the user visits the website. Using browser caching can improve Core Web Vitals by reducing the amount of data that has to be downloaded each time the user visits the website.
Enabling compression on a website allows the server to compress the size of the files it sends to the user’s browser, which can reduce the amount of data that has to be downloaded and improve Core Web Vitals.
Use Font-Loading Strategies
Web fonts can also cause layout shifts on a page. To avoid this, use font loading strategies like font-display: optional, font-display: swap, and font-display: fallback to ensure that fonts are loaded in a way that doesn’t cause layout shifts.
Avoid Inserting Content above Existing Content
Inserting content above existing content can also cause layout shifts. To prevent that from happening, avoid inserting content above existing content and instead use techniques like prepending content or using absolute positioning to place the new content in a different part of the page.
Use a Layout That Doesn’t Rely on Precise Dimensions
Pages with a layout that relies on precise dimensions can be prone to layout shifts, so use a layout that is flexible and doesn’t rely on precise dimensions, such as a grid-based layout or a responsive layout that adapts to the size of the user’s device.
Optimize the Loading of Third-Party Resources
Third-party resources, such as fonts, scripts, and stylesheets, often add overhead to a page and delay the loading of the main content. Optimize the loading of third-party resources by using techniques like prefetching, preloading, and lazy-loading to improve their loading speed, thereby improving Core Web Vitals.
The Importance of Core Web Vitals
Core Web Vitals are a set of metrics that measure the user experience on a website. Google introduced them to help webmasters and developers understand the factors contributing to a good user experience on their sites.
These metrics are important because they help ensure that a website is fast, responsive, and visually stable, which can help improve the user experience and increase engagement. Additionally, Google has said that these metrics will become a ranking factor in its search algorithm, so it’s important for webmasters and developers to pay attention to them.
Conduct Regular Performance Audits
Performance audits are a way to evaluate the performance of a website and identify areas for improvement. Our advice is to conduct regular performance audits using tools like Lighthouse, PageSpeed Insights, and Chrome UX Report and use the results of these audits to make adjustments and improvements to the website. This way, you’ll make sure that your Core Web Vitals are top-notch.