Google has confirmed that the much-rumored Page Experience update, which was thought to be affecting mobile rankings in Google’s mobile search results, started rolling out to desktop search results yesterday, November 5th.
The Page Experience change, which was first handed out to mobile search results in November 2021, will be applied to desktop search by February 2022, according to an advance notice given in November 2021.
Google Page Experience Update For Desktop Search
While Google has been testing a new algorithm change for its mobile search results, it has now confirmed that it is rolling out an update to its desktop search results as well.
The Google page experience algorithm now takes into account whether a page provides useful and relevant information in addition to having great content.
This means that webmasters are going to need to up their game if they want their pages to appear higher in Google’s desktop results.
Page Experience for desktop includes the same ranking signals as the mobile upgrade for the most part.
What is Page Experience
Google has a detailed set of guidelines for developers outlining many of the things that will be measured for their web app or website. These guidelines include things like the speed of the page, the time it takes to load, and whether or not the text is readable.
But in short, these metrics aim to understand how a user will perceive the experience of a specific web page. This is important for any website or app that wants to increase their conversion rate and improve their bottom-line.
What Does This Update Mean For Your Website?
When you use the Search Preview tool, you’ll be able to see how your search results will appear in the mobile-first world. For many businesses, this will be the first time that they get to see how their desktop search results are being assessed in the mobile-first world.
This means that factors that were previously never assessed for your website in your desktop search results will now be taken into consideration by Google. For example, some businesses have seen that their website is ranking for certain keywords on mobile but not on desktop.
The desktop report may be found just beneath the mobile report in Search Console’s Page Experience tab.
With the exception of the Mobile Usability section, it appears exactly like the mobile report.
Take a look at the screenshot below for an example:
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t draw any conclusions about the update’s impact until it’s fully implemented by the end of March.
It’s possible that changes in your desktop search rankings between now and the end of March aren’t due to the Page Experience update.
Why We Care
While I do not expect that this page experience improvement will have a substantial impact on rankings, those working to improve their page experience have mostly concentrated on their mobile pages.
I don’t expect large ranking changes as a result of this update; in fact, if you notice any today or tomorrow, it’s unlikely to be due to this update.