Monday, 27 August 2018 09:09

Little benefit from switching to Google's AMP: claim

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Little benefit from switching to Google's AMP: claim Pixabay

Only one in three online publishers has achieved an increase in traffic by switching to Google's accelerated mobile pages format, the content intelligence platform Chartbeat says, basing its conclusion on a study of 159 mostly American websites, that covered 10 unnamed countries.

While traffic on the average was increasing by the use of AMP, a format that Google has been pushing since October 2015, Chartbeat questioned whether it had any impact on revenue, the single most important factor for Web publishers in the post-print era.

As iTWire reported in 2016, there have been complaints that using AMP means that the original URL of the page in question is obscured and the chances of a reader going back to the original site are very slim.

Probably for this reason, Apple last year decided that version 11 of iOS would update its Safari browser to that AMP links would be stripped out of an URL when the story was shared.

Chartbeat's Chris Breaux and Bradley Doll wrote: "Our overarching finding is that AMP boosts traffic for publishers on average, but most publishers are not average.

"Only 1 in 3 we analysed could see clear statistical evidence of a traffic increase. Though it may be possible to optimise AMP implementation to improve monetisation, publishers seeing lower revenue on the platform will have a hard time making the case that a traffic boost will make up for it."

They found that the only positive was an increase in page-load times, but this could not be an over-arching reason to adopt AMP.

"Though the technology offers rightly lauded fast page loads, and potential opportunities in new products, with only 34% of publishers seeing a clear boost in traffic and some facing substantial monetisation challenges, implementing AMP may come at a high cost for publishers," the pair wrote.

"Those publishers facing revenue challenges might be better served by optimising their implementation set-up on AMP rather than relying on a traffic boost to solve these monetisation challenges."

The full study is here.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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