How to Fix Your Website for the Page Experience Update 2022

Written by David Freudenberg on

Google shook the SEO world in August 2021 with the release of the Mobile Device Page Experience Update that permanently changed what it takes to own a website. The Page Experience Update for mobile devices came as an unexpected shocker for unprepared business owners. Are you ready for the Google Page Experience Update for Desktop Devices in 2022?

In February of 2022, Google will release an update to their algorithm that will heavily favor websites with a great “Page Experience” on desktop devices. What does this mean for you as a website owner or marketer? This means websites that do not adjust will be left behind and lose tons of traffic and revenue. Do not worry; we have got your back. Keep reading to learn how to prepare for the update, so your website remains as visible and user-friendly as possible.


What is the Google Page Experience update on desktop?

Last year, Google released an update for its search engine that strictly rolled out on mobile devices to enhance the user experience. This time around, they are continuing the same strategy and using the same data-driven ranking signals as before for traffic from desktop devices. 

Along with the update, a report within Search Console for desktop was recently released. The report helps website owners understand how pages perform when accessed via laptops or desktops rather than just smartphones/tablets. Consider using this report to learn more about what you could do to prepare while following these best practices. 


Why Should You Care about the Page Experience Update on Desktop?

Google has announced a major update that will affect your traffic from desktop devices. You should care about this because if you do not prepare, then not only could Google Page Experience reduce the number of visitors to your website, but it could cost you money as well. 


How to Be Prepared for the Page Experience Update 2022?

What can you do to prepare your website for this update? The answer is simple – make adjustments based on what we know from the last Page Experience update. Page Experience used by desktop devices will utilize all of the same ranking factors, which are:

  1. Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
  2. First Input Delay (FID)
  3. Cumulative Layout Shift 
  4. HTTPS Security 
  5. Absence of Intrusive Interstitials 

To get an idea of how well your site is performing, measure it’s page experience with Google’s Page Experience Insights tool.


How to Speed Up Your Website’s Largest Contentful Paint (LCD)?

The largest contentful paint is used to measure the time it takes for the content on a web page to become visible. Google recommends your website’s largest contentful paint to load in 2 seconds or less for an enhanced page experience. 

Suppose your website’s LCD is not loading up in 2 seconds or less. Here is what you could do to speed it up. 

  • Increase the speed of server response times
  • Defer any noncritical Javascript and CSS
  • Optimize resource-heavy elements affecting load time


How to Speed Up Your Website’s First Input Delay (FID)?

The first input delay is used to measure the time it takes for a web page to respond when a user has clicked it. Google recommends your website’s FID load in 100 milliseconds or less to maximize page experience. 

The most common issue with websites that have a slow FID is heavy javascript. When the browser needs to load all of this extra code, it takes longer for your site’s interface – and any animations or other interactive elements on your site to respond. This can cause user frustration, increased bounce rate, and lower conversion rates for your website. Here are two ways you could speed up your FID from heavy javascript.

  • Split up Javascript execution tasks by using code splitting
  • Focus on improving the interactive readiness of the web page


How to Speed Up Your Website’s Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)? 

Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) is a metric used by Google’s Core Web Vitals to measure how visually stable an online page becomes when someone clicks on it. For example, if you have links in your navigation bar that, when clicked, load new pages, this could result in some unexpected jumping around as things switch over to the new web page on your website. 

Google recommends a Cumulative Layout Shift load time of 0.1 seconds or less. To achieve a CLS of 0.1 seconds or less, avoid the most common causes of a slow cumulative layout shift. Here are the most common causes for a slow CLS and how to fix them.


Images That Do Not Have Dimensions

Use the width and height attributes to ensure your images and video are displayed in an appropriate size while they load.


Ads That Do Not Have Dimensions 

The #1 cause of cumulative layout shift is ads that lack dimensions. Follow these best practices to eliminate this problem on your website and stay on Google’s good side during the page experience update. 

  1. Statically reserve space for your ad slot
  2. Be careful when placing non-sticky ads around the top of a viewport.
  3. When the ad slot is visible by the placeholder, avoid collapsing the reserved space. 
  4. Use historical data to judge the most likely size of the ad slot.
  5. Avoid choosing the largest possible size of the ad. 


Downloading and Rendering Web Fonts

Use the Font Loading API tool created by Google to reduce the time it takes to download and render fonts.

If you have gone through all of these best practices and your website’s LCD, FID, and CLS are still suffering. Then it may be worth looking into switching hosting providers. The hosting you choose has a tremendous effect on improving your website loading time, directly affecting your website’s LCD, FID, and CLS.


How to Create a Secure Website Using HTTPS?

Google made HTTPS security a ranking factor for their Page Experience Update because secure websites protect users from negative experiences. For this reason, you should install an SSL certificate on your website so that when people visit, they can have confidence in what’s being shown and not be worried about getting hacked.


How to Improve Page Experience for a Website With Intrusive Interstitials?

Google has a financial incentive to prevent the disrupting of the user experience, and eliminating intrusive popups is one way of doing this. Popups cause discomfort for users who may not want to be bothered with distractions while trying to find what they’re looking for on your website. Removing these popups could increase your search rankings, traffic, and conversions while lowering the bounce rate.


Wrapping Up 

The Google Page Experience Update for desktop devices will be fully rolled out in March 2022. Remember to bookmark this blog, so you can follow these best practices to optimize your website for the five rankings factors and be prepared. 

Websites that did not prepare for the last Page Experience Update on mobile devices lost out big. Do not make the same mistake twice. Being unprepared puts your brand’s traffic and revenue on Google search at risk.


David Freudenberg

Guest Author

David Freudenberg is the founder and COO of SEO With David, an SEO agency working with small to midsize businesses. He is a leader in the industry and advocates for using traditional marketing principles to create SEO strategies that exceed your business goals.