Google announces desktop page experience update for February 2022

Google has announced that the Page Experience update will come to desktop in February 2022:

“We’ll begin using page experience as part of our desktop ranking systems beginning in February 2022. The rollout will be complete by the end of March 2022. This ranking launch will be based on the same page experience signals that we rolled out for mobile earlier this year.

We are also planning to help site owners understand how their desktop pages are performing with regards to page experience using a Search Console report which will launch before desktop becomes a ranking signal.”

The Page Experience algorithm has a focus on good user experience. The impact of the Page Experience update on mobile results was small.

What is page experience?

The page experience algorithm tries to understand how website visitors perceive a web page: how quickly it loads, how well the page is displayed on mobile phones, how ads are shown on the page, etc.

The new page experience algorithm uses existing Google ranking factors. For example, the page speed update, the mobile-friendly update, the interstitials update and the HTTPS update are part of the new algorithm. Google is going to refine the metrics that deal with usability and speed.

What are core web vitals?

Google’s announcement also explains core web vitals. These are a set of real-world, user-centered metrics that quantify key aspects of the user experience. They measure dimensions of web usability such as load time, interactivity, and the stability of content as it loads (so you don’t accidentally tap that button when it shifts under your finger).

The core web vitals signals and the existing ranking signals make Google’s new page experience algorithm:

Google's page experience algorithm (Source: Google blog)

The signals are the same for desktop, except for mobile friendliness. These are the core web vitals metrics:

  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): how quickly a web page loads. The LCP should occur within 2.5 seconds of when the page first starts loading.
  • First Input Delay (FID): how quickly users can interact with a page. Pages should have a FID of less than 100 milliseconds.
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): the visual stability of a page (jumping buttons, etc.). Pages should maintain a CLS of less than 0.1.

In addition to this, a web page should work on mobile devices (not applicable for desktop search), it should not contain malicious or deceptive content, it should not contain intrusive interstitials, and it should be servers over HTTPS.

How to check the loading time of your web pages

Among many other things, the Website Audit tool in SEOprofiler checks the loading time of your web pages. The ‘Performance’ page in the audit report shows the fastest and the slowest pages of your website, and it lets you filter the pages of your website by loading time:

website performance analysis

If you do not make sure that your website loads quickly, your competition will make sure that their websites do.

Optimize your website now

Optimize the pages of your website now and get better rankings on Google and other search engines:

Optimize your website now

Johannes Selbach

Johannes Selbach is the CEO of SEOprofiler. He blogs about search engine optimization and website marketing topics at "http://blog.seoprofiler.com".