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Is AMP Worth It in 2020? What Google Does Not Want You to Know

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AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a library along with guidelines for developing fast websites that are quicker than sites developed through the usual means.

Since AMP by Google is based on open source code, anyone can fork or clone the code as they please. Besides Google, internet giants like Pinterest, Twitter, Baidu, and Bing also support this concept.

If you use AMP for building your website, Google will reward you by placing your pages higher up in search rankings.

Websites of all sorts report super-fast loading speeds, highly responsive pages, better SEO, and higher traffic.

AMP by Google … The Good

Can you make websites faster without the use of AMP by Google?

Does AMP employ the best practices or is there room for improvement?

The short answer is this. Although AMP is used for faster websites, it does not deploy the best practices, but since most pages are already terribly slow, any improvement, whether through AMP or otherwise, is bound to improve speed metrics.

Web developers and experts are not pleased with this approach to already bloated web pages. The problems with AMP are numerous.

The Bad

Among several critical issues, you are effectively ceding control of your website to Google. Hence, Google can host your pages on its servers and show them on its domain.

Currently, Google is scrambling to eliminate this control aspect. The main motivation behind this manoeuvre could be to avoid anti-trust lawsuits.

The problem with web pages is that they take about 20 seconds to load via 3G, and 20 seconds to load via 4G. This is atrocious as far as user experience is concerned. Google tried to remedy this by implementing AMP. Quite admirably, it started with news sites which are the worst offenders vis-à-vis user experience. It’s not unusual for each page to hog up to 10MB of data.

News sites are a prime example of how not to build web sites. AMP brought many positive results on this front.

To use AMP, you must abide by certain guidelines. You must conform to a guideline that may be a fork of the Polymer project. Polymer is a specification for web components.

Unfortunately, web components were not widely adopted until recently. Hence, it relies on an abundance of polyfil code so that browsers remain compatible with the project.

This problematic feature has been carried over into AMP as well.

And the Ugly

Out of the 3 main parts, the most contentious has to be the AMP CDN. Google uses it to copy your content and host it on its domain. Webmasters are bound to have serious issues with this approach.

Without delving too deep into the gory nitty-gritty, for some strange reasons, AMP needs 254kb of JavaScript. This is a major performance disruptor. Most applications need under 50KB, so AMP is less than optimum.

Don’t be deceived into thinking that your pages are loading super fast. Pages start rendering after 1.6s over a high-speed connection in desktop and after 3.5 seconds on Nexus 5 over the LTE connection. Yes! You read that right! The page renders after a full 3 seconds.

There is a plethora of unoptimised images, CSS, script, and more on AMP by Google. It’s better than the utterly dismal 20-second benchmark, but there is still a lot that needs fixing.

For the fastest loading times, webpage performance and responsiveness, you can rely on our expertise.

Contact us today.