AMP or Accelerated Mobile Pages was launched in February 2016 and is an idealistic project from Google. It’s an open-source project aimed at allowing mobile website content to render nearly instantly. This initiative has Google as a sponsor, but it is not a program owned by Google and supported by Bing, Baidu, Twitter, Pinterest, and many other parties.
Google AMP serves to minimize data up to 8 times smaller than the size of the mobile page. Publishers often wonder if switching to AMP will result in an ad revenue hit or increase. Usually, it comes down to testing. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the pros and cons of AMP for publishers, and if you should consider switching.
Benefits using AMP
The main benefit of AMP is speed. If your website currently loads slowly for users on mobile and/or 3G cellular connections, then you will see an instant increase in loading speed through the use of AMP. You’ll also gain the following benefits when utilizing AMP:
- Faster Loading Time – Generally, the quicker a page loads, the more likely a visitor will stay on your website and potentially click on ads.
- Reduced Data Usage For Visitors – This ties in with faster loading times and is especially useful for users on lower-tier/slower cellphone networks.
- Increased Visibility In Search – Google seems to favor AMP from time to time. It might be because of the platform or the fact that website speed is a Google ranking factor. If your website’s AMP version is much faster than your mobile site version, you could experience an increase in traffic and Google rankings.
Cons of AMP
As with any platform, there are cons. AMP is no different. Fast loading mobile pages are great but can come at a price. Here are some of the cons to running AMP:
- The user experience is basic, and fancy design elements normally can’t be included.
- You will have random errors and warnings in Google Search Console. Some will come and go by themselves, some will stay, and you will need to fix them. So be prepared to fiddle with AMP a little.
- Depending on the size of your site, it can lead to a lot of extra work as you’ll essentially have two separate sites to maintain.
- Tracking data from AMP pages over Analytics, ads, or even DoubleClick is fairly limited.
Things you should know about AMP
- You can create your custom design for AMP
- AMP is NOT just a simple code strip. Google caches your website on their servers, and no matter what you do, you can’t speed up your website to be as fast as google’s cache because they also do a small pre-render
- AMP does help with boosting your page results. Many people don’t know how to track it as the web pages are served from Google’s servers instead of yours.
- AMP is NOT a plugin. They have created a plugin to help you implement it, but you can create your AMP pages, your own AMP design, etc., as long as you adhere to the guidelines set by the AMP project.
- AMP is NOT Google, it is pioneered and supported by Google, but many websites and services support it.
Will switching to AMP result in a revenue hit?
Now that you have a better understanding of the pros and cons of AMP and what implementing it entails, let’s find out if it will boost and hurt your ad revenue. With AMP, you’ll get better traffic from Google (including mobile search), but ad revenue might be impacted negatively.
AdSense and Ad Exchange are sufficient enough to monetize AMP pages. Currently, other ad networks are not optimized to work with AMP. Considering the limitations it imposed on JS Scripts where most header bidding partners tech are coded. It also brings limitations to publishers that rely on header bidding when using AMP. Also, some header bidders are not fully compatible with AMP.
Additionally, impressions per pageview and session take a massive hit because of the lazy loading feature within AMP.
Results may vary, and publishers need to weigh up all the pros and cons of setting up AMP and test to see whether the platform hurts or improves their ad revenue.
For more information on testing and AMP and header bidding, be sure to read this article: http://www.monetizemore.com/blog/publishers-amp-header-bidding/
Ready to test it for yourself?
Want to test AMP for yourself, but you’re not sure if it’s a good fit? Let MonetizeMore help! Our ad ops teams can help optimize your ad inventory to maximize your ad revenue, whether you’re running AMP, want to test AMP, or have an optimized mobile version of your site. Sign up to MonetizeMore to get started today!