Core Web Vitals SEO Impact & How to Improve them?

In this guide, you will learn what are Core Web Vitals in SEO, the impact of these metrics on SEO, how important are they, and the tools to measure them.

Core Web Vitals metrics have recently become a ranking factor for mobile and desktop searches. Previously, Google gave us tools to measure these metrics, and charts to analyze.

Every time Google looks at your website to determine if it is relevant to a search query, it does the same thing by checking your Core Web Vitals metrics.

Google verifies your largest contentful paint (LCP), first input delay (FID), and cumulative layout shift (CLS). These Core Web Vitals metrics are used to evaluate the overall user experience of your website, but how do Core Web Vitals affect SEO? how important are they really?

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What are Core Web Vitals Metrics?

Core Web Vitals SEO Impact & How to Improve Them?

Search engine optimization is mainly aimed at improving the quality of your website and thus providing a good user experience. Today, an important factor for search engine optimization is the "Core Web Vitals".

Core Web Vitals are 3-speed metrics that are part of Google's Page Experience signals used to measure user experience. These 3 Core Web Vitals metrics measure visual load with Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), visual stability with Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS), and interactivity with First Input Delay (FID).

Optimizing these metrics is critical to the user experience and organic ranking of your website.

Google wants to ensure that it provides each user with the most relevant and highest quality results for their query. That's why Google's algorithm now takes into account the page experience, in addition to many other ranking factors.

For Google, the ideal site is one that loads in less than 2.5 seconds, offers many interactive features, and has stable and fluid visual elements.

It is important to note that Googlebot does NOT take a look at Core Web Vitals metrics during the crawling and indexing process. Instead, this takes place during the Chrome CRuX field data report. 

In other words, Google uses Chrome usage data to examine Core Web Vitals metrics of web pages. While Googlebot provides the majority of website ranking signals, the web vitals are unique in that they come from an outside source.

If you have no time to fix these SEO metrics yourself, you can check out these services on improving Core Web Vitals.

Are Core Web Vitals Important for SEO?

There are many ranking signals (over 200), so why bother with Core Web Vitals?

Not only are these indicators crucial for technical SEO, but they are also invaluable for improving your page experience.

So, by meeting the standards of each vital, you'll be giving the user experience a boost, which is a win-win situation.

One of the most important Core Web Vitals (LCP) has to do with page load time, which has a huge impact on your bounce rate. If your page loads slowly, don't expect many users to stay on it. Instead, they will go elsewhere online to satisfy their needs, which is not good news for you.

That's why it's in your best interest to improve your Core Web Vitals. It's not just for SEO, but for every user who interacts with your website. A good user experience will result in better bounce rates and better conversions.

While the core web vitals make up the majority of your page experience score, there are a few other factors, including:

- Mobile-friendliness 
- Absence of interstitial popups 

Initially, it was thought that navigation safety was another ranking signal included in the page experience. Yet, as of August 2021, Google has clarified that this is not the case and will not contribute to your SEO. However, safe browsing is still a good practice because it protects users.

You need to make sure that your website is responsive and works perfectly on mobile and desktop. It's also a good idea to switch to HTTPS if you haven’t already, especially if you have an e-commerce website.

Finally, it's best to avoid interstitial popups these days, as users generally view them as an annoyance and they have a negative impact on your UX.


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Understanding the 3 Core Web Vitals as a Ranking Factor

How to improve Core Web Vitals? Let's now look at each of the 3 Core Web Vitals metrics and learn how to improve them if they are lacking.

The Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): Load Time

The Largest Contentful Paint is simply the largest content you have, whether it's a page, an article, or an image. LCP is directly related to page load speed, as it measures how long it takes to load the largest content on your website. In general, your LCP should take about two seconds or less to fully load.

How can you improve your LCP? The first steps you can take are to remove unnecessary third-party scripts and upgrade your web host to reduce your load speed. You can also use "lazy loading" to speed up your loading speed and make images load only when your visitors scroll through your website.

The First Input Delay (FID): Interactivity

Responsiveness and interactivity are very important for your website, and that's where FID comes in. FID is all about providing a good user experience in terms of response time, as FID measures how long it takes for your page to respond to the user's clicks.

In my experience, this is probably the rarest of the three issues - unless your website has other elements, such as plug-ins, that are being processed at the same time, which could cause some issues. Your focus should be on achieving about 100 milliseconds or less for response time. Just as you can improve your page load speed, you can improve your DIF by removing non-essential third-party scripts or using a browser cache to speed up your response time and prevent your page from lagging.

Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): Visual Stability

Cumulative Layout Shift measures the stability of each element on your website. Good websites have stable pages, even when loading from one page to the next; your CLS ensures that features don't change location during page load and prevents your visitors to click on the wrong button on your page.

Aim for a cumulative layout shift of 0.1 or less. Slight shifts are not an issue, but if the entire page is moved down by another element on the page, it will affect your CLS. To avoid this, you can set the dimensions of the size attributes for images, videos, etc. By doing this, your viewer's browser will be able to see how much space is needed for each element on the page.

Does Core Web Vitals Affect SEO

The impact of Core Web Vitals on SEO will be severe for some websites with a poor page experience. However, most websites with a good user experience will not see any impact at all. This is because Google always prioritizes other ranking signals that are more important, such as the quality of the content on a page.

So, in terms of SEO priorities, focus first and foremost on creating high-quality content that aligns with search intent and covers the topic thoroughly. Once you've done that, focus on optimizing pages for Core Web Vitals metrics to get an even greater organic increase.


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Tools to Measure Core Web Vitals

The strength of your website depends on the impression it leaves on its users. By optimizing your Core Web Vitals scores, you can evaluate and improve the user experience. Basically, a web vital is a quality standard for UX and web performance set by Google. Each web vital represents a discrete aspect of the user experience. It can be measured using real data from users visiting your websites.

There are a number of tools you can use to measure your site's Core Web Vitals scores to compare its performance against recommended benchmarks.

Google Tools

One of the easiest ways is the Core Web Vitals report (in the Experience tab) in Google Search Console. It will tell you which URLs are "good" (fast loading), which ones need improvement, and which ones have poor scores, on both mobile and desktop devices. Simply be aware that the data is a bit retarded.

If you click on a specific URL and then click on "PageSpeed Insights," you'll get specific recommendations on how to improve the page experience. (Some recommendations are relatively simple, such as optimizing image size to reduce load time. Others will be more complex and require you to dig into your site's code to reduce unused JavaScript or eliminate resources that block rendering.

Google Lighthouse is a page performance measurement tool that is perhaps the most useful for web developers. It includes audits that Google PageSpeed Insights does not.

Google Web.Dev allows you to enter any URL on your site and get recommendations for improving Core Web Vitals, as well as general best practice recommendations for improving the overall user experience.

Starting from Google Chrome 88 and higher, you can now see Core Web Vitals data in the Chrome DevTools performance panel. Starting from Chrome 90, there is an overlay tool.

You can also utilize the Chrome User Experience Report (CrUX).

Core Web Vitals Chrome Extension

If you are looking for a Google Chrome extension, the Web Vitals extension is a quick and easy way to see if a page meets the Core Web Vitals criteria provided by Google. Be aware, however, that this extension is not a tool developed by Google itself.


Depending on your content management system (CMS), you may also have other options. For example, if your site is built on WordPress, there are third-party plugins that can help improve the performance of Core Web Vitals, such as WP Rocket, NitroPack, or Asset Clean Up.


You can measure the CWV scores of any page directly from your Chrome browser using Google's Lighthouse DevTool. Simply inspect the page and click on the Lighthouse tab.

Core Web Vitals SEO Impact & How to Improve Them?

Core Web Vitals SEO Impact - Summary

Core Web Vitals are important metrics for SEO, as they can help give your website more recognition and keep it organized and clean. These metrics can help improve your website's visibility and ranking in browsers, as well as provide your audience with a hassle-free experience when navigating your page. It's best to start optimizing your website as soon as possible to avoid negative feedback or lower rankings in search results.

By now, you should have a better understanding of Google's Core Web Vitals metrics and how they will affect your SEO and page experience. Each Core Web Vital plays a crucial role in your website's user experience, so it's worth improving them all for that reason alone.

Add to that the fact that Core Web Vitals are now important ranking factors for SEO, and website owners can no longer ignore their importance.

If you have no time to fix these SEO metrics yourself, you can check out these services on improving Core Web Vitals.

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