LCP: An important ranking factor of Google

For the ranking of a website, Google looks at numerous factors. One of the factors that is increasingly important is LCP, or the ‘Largest Contentful Paint’. This term indicates how long it takes before the largest elements on a page are shown to the visitor. This can relate to a text block, but also to an image, video or slideshow.

This term mainly looks at the area above the imaginary fold. The imaginary fold indicates the part of your website that is immediately visible without having to scroll. If you scroll down, you will then come out from under the imaginary fold.

If you want to optimize your website as well as possible, you should get started with LCP. Google has started to attach more and more value to this. This in itself makes sense, since LCP also determines the speed of your website. The better the LCP of your website is, the faster your website loads. These elements simply go hand in hand with each other.

Google’s Core Web Vitals

In 2021, Google suddenly came up with something new; Core Web Vitals. This is a tool from Google with which you can measure the page experience of a website or page. By launching this tool, Google has more and more focused on the user experience. Within the world of user experience, LCP plays an important role.

What exactly do we mean by page experience? That’s a set of factors that measures how users experience the web page. This does not look at all at the information on the website. It is purely about the experience of the website.

If you use Core Web Vitals, you can get started with three elements:

  • Visual Stability: do elements on your website shift when scrolling? The less content on your website shifts, the better. According to Google, shifting content has a negative impact on the experience on /of your website.
  • First Input Delay: this looks at how quickly the page responds to input from the visitor? In an ideal world, this should be responded to as quickly as possible.
  • Largest Contentful Paint: this is the speed at which the most important part of the page is loaded. In this case, “most important” equals “largest.” For example, the largest part on a page can be a large block of text or an image.

Is it advisable to get started with Google’s Core Web Vitals? Yes, without a doubt. The fact that Google has added this tool is telling. Telling for the fact that Google itself attaches more and more value to the User Experience. Our advice is therefore to get serious with this tool from Google.

LCP: Largest Contentful Paint

Have you developed a beautiful website? And did you choose a large image above the imaginary fold? Then there is a very good chance that this image is the largest and most important part of your website. The faster this image is loaded, the faster the LCP of your website. That ultimately only benefits your ranking within Google.

Please note: this is not an empty field or a background color. As the name ‘Paint’ suggests, this concerns, for example, an image, an svg, a canvas or a piece of text.

Is there only one LCP on each website? No, the LCP refers to the directly visible part of the web page. For example, does an internal link mean that your visitor ends up halfway through another page? Then that page in that place looks at the LCP.

But: what is a good LCP? And what is a moderate to poor LCP? Google uses the following values:

  • Good LCP: a charging speed lower than 2500ms
  • Moderate LCP: a charging speed between 2500 and 4000ms
  • Poor LCP: a charging speed higher than 4000ms

If you start working with Google’s Core Web Vitals, you’ll see this amount of ‘ms’ immediately come to the fore. The lower this score is, the better your website scores in the field of LCP.

Especially for mobile users, this has become an important criteria. If you end up on a website on your smartphone, you want this website to load as quickly as possible. The faster the largest part is loaded on the website, the faster the entire website is loaded.

By working with the LCP of your website, you will also focus on the overall speed of your website.

How can you easily measure the LCP?

To measure the LCP, you don’t necessarily need Core Web Vitals. You can also view the LCP of a website via the browser. To do this, follow this step-by-step plan:

  • Step 1: Open a new incognito window and open the web page whose LCP you want to view.
  • Step 2: Now right click on the page and click on inspect (in Google Chrome)
  • Step 3: Click on the lighthouse panel. Now select only ‘Performance’ and then on ‘run audits’. You will now immediately see, among other things, the Largest Contentful Paint.

Conclusion

Would you like to improve the ranking of your website? Then it is wise to also focus your arrows on the Core Web Vitals from Google. Within this new tool, the Largest Contentful Paint actually plays the most important role. By optimizing this criteria, you optimize the speed of your entire website.

If you want to get started with this, you can come to us. We are happy to improve the LCP of your website, while we can also solve any problems for you. Together with you we like to work on the optimization of your (WordPress) website. Feel free to contact us to discuss all the possibilities!

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