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8 things you need to know about Google AMP

James A. Martin | July 7, 2016
The next big thing in SEO is AMP, or Google's Accelerated Mobile Pages. Search pros break down AMP and share insights on what you need to know to stay ahead of the curve.

AMPs are "completely separate from a typical mobile site," says Jim Robinson, founder and CEO of ClickSeed, a digital marketing and SEO agency. "Assuming your site has a desktop version, a mobile version and an AMP version, the desktop version will be the canonical (preferred version), and the mobile and AMP versions will each be annotated separately as alternates." 

Site publishers can serve their own ads through AMP, "although there are restrictions on sizes and placements," Robinson says. "Most major publishers serve ads through DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) or OpenX, both of which are compatible with AMP."

3. What types of sites should use AMP? 

Initially, AMP is focused on news stories from online publishers, the primary content Google search users currently see as AMP pages in mobile search results. However, AMP is also relevant for other types of businesses, such as ecommerce organizations, for which the AMP results carousel and other components are well-suited.

For example, on June 30, eBay announced that its AMP-powered mobile shopping experience was live, and about 8 million AMP-based "browse nodes" are in production. Such popular queries as "camera drones" and "Sony PlayStation" are already "AMP-ed."

The ability to develop AMP-based product pages is likely to "create a huge commercial incentive for websites to adopt the standard," according to Robinson.

"AMP is an incredibly important part of a balanced marketing strategy for publishers today, given the project's close ties with search engine results and advertising impression rates," says Trevor Paulsen, a product manager with Adobe Analytics. "Adoption has been strong, given the battle for mobile ad dollars and the fact that Google prioritizes AMPs in search results. That being said, Google is interested in keeping people within their ad network, so it will be interesting to see whether ads are more successful on the mobile web or in apps."

"As with any evolutionary change in the search engines, people need to pay attention to AMP and adjust," says Thomas Petty, president and digital marketing trainer with Bay Area Search Engine Academy. "Over time, it will become an influencing factor. Just as Google has been recommending mobile-responsive websites, this is another step in that direction." 

4. Why did Google create AMP?

Web surfers want rapid search results, according to Eric Enge, CEO of digital marketing agency Stone Temple Consulting. "This means Google wants to give users speed, because they have serious competition in today's world. And if they can offer superior speed for content accessed via search results, they will maintain or win market share," Enge says. "Also, Google wants to keep people on the mobile web. While Google has five of the nine most-installed mobile apps, the reality is that their market share is far less certain there."


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