LCP: What is it and Why is it Crucial For SEO?

User experience and loading speed are closely linked and determine the positioning of a web page on the search engine. That’s why the LCP metric needs to be considered by site optimizers.

The user experience, what is technically called UX, is increasingly central to SEO.

It’s time to delve into one of the metrics on which this algorithm evolution is based, the Largest Contentful Paint or LCP.

Let’s see in detail what this factor is ranking. Get a good ranking for relevant insurance keywords for how it is measured and how it can be improved to climb into the SERP.

  1. What is LCP? Here is a simple explanation
  2. When is an LCP considered correct?
  3. What can happen if the LCP is not good?
  4. For a better Largest Contentful Paint

What is LCP? Here is a Simple Explanation

To explain what Largest Contentful Paint is in the utmost simplicity, it can be said that this metric represents the speed with which the main content of a web page is loaded and is ready for user interaction.

The loading time of the main element, which according to Google is the largest, is closely linked to what the user perceives when landing on the page after clicking on a SERP result.

A large image or video or large block of text occupies a relevant portion of what the user is viewing and, therefore, should be the part of the content that best responds to the search engine’s request.

LCP is not the only metric that measures loading speed, but it is the most influential user perception.

For example, factors such as First Contentful Paint, First Paint, First Meaningful Paint, Time To Interactive are used to determine how long specific parts of the site are loaded but are not focused on the need of the person who asks Google a question and searches an answer on that URL

Trying to simplify, even more, it can be said that if you search online for a tutorial to assemble a piece of furniture, what you want is to be able to see the video as soon as possible with all the explanations and not everything that is below, above, around it.

LCP is a fundamental metric for the Core Web Vitals score because it accurately measures the speed of use of a web page.

When is an LCP Considered Correct?

Anyone who works in digital marketing knows how weak the attention and patience of users are, which is why the speed with which the main content of a page is displayed is one of the keys to the success of a website.

As indicated in the Google support page dedicated to Core Web Vitals, the Largest Contentful Paint scale of values ​​is made up of three ranges:

  • LCP is good if less than or equal to 2.5 seconds
  • LCP to improve if between 2.5 and 4 seconds
  • LCP is not good if longer than 4 seconds

It is not enough that this metric remains sporadically under two and a half seconds, but it must register this result for at least 75% of page visits. Google’s exact words are as follows:

“Add LCP (aggregated LCP) shown in the report is the time it takes for 75% of the visits to a URL in the group to reach the LCP state. “

What Can Happen if The LCP is Not Good?

We must not think that your content is so excellent that it justifies a loading time beyond 4 seconds because, as already mentioned, the user is impatient and does not wait long in front of a screen that is not very composed.

The most logical of the effects generated by a poor LCP (in Google’s definition: poor) is a high bounce rate or a high rate of users who arrive on the page but leave immediately because they do not find quick answers to their wishes.

If users do not use the page’s content, they do not continue browsing other parts of the site, and they do not grasp the CTA.

Instruction for the public aimed at provoking an immediate response. A verb is usually used in CTAs … then they leave the site and go to another one to find fulfillment.

Thinking about e-commerce all translates into advantages for the competitor.

On the contrary, if you take care of the LCP properly and publish quality content, the user will have a good experience on the site or the virtual store and enjoy the best of the text, images, videos created with so much effort.

Google rewards a web page built to give excellent information and UX and, consequently, gets a good ranking in the SERP.

For a Better Largest Contentful Paint

To optimize the LCP metric, you can perform several activities that are part of the broad field of SEO.

The first piece of advice is to act on the images loaded from the website by compressing them, using better-performing formats, resizing them appropriately.

It is often necessary to work on the code, particularly the CSS and JavaScript, cleaning the files from what is not strictly necessary and, especially in the case of the second programming language mentioned, verifying that it is up to date.

The texts can also be improved to make viewing faster. In this case, make sure you use fonts that are not too large and, above all, that they can be loaded without hitches or delays.

It is also possible to use pre-loading strategies to have the primary resources ready to be displayed to the user who arrives on the website page.

To determine which pages have a poor LCP and, consequently, need a noticeable improvement, you can use Google Search Console, a tool that allows you to view the URLs with loading speed problems.

Alternatively, you can use two other tools of the Google family: PageSpeed ​​Insights (useful for analyzing the speed of the web page) and Lighthouse (designed to improve the quality of web pages).

As is clear from what has been said, it is not easy to optimize this metric without proper technical knowledge. This is why it is always better to turn to SEO experts if you want to get a website with excellent UX.

Image Source – Elegant Themes Youtube

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