Web Development:

A brand new update to Google’s PageSpeed Insights

Posted on November 17, 2021

A few weeks ago, Google announced that its PageSpeed Insights tool would be updated and a new interface to the tool would be (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Google updates trio of testing tools

Posted on October 14, 2021

Search engine Google has updated its testing tools for accelerated mobile platform (AMP), mobile friendliness, and rich results.

All three now have (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Google clarifies importance of case sensitive URLs

Posted on October 1, 2021

Google’s John Mueller recently talked about the importance of uppercase and lowercase characters in your website URL as part of the latest instalment of Ask Googlebot on YouTube. Today, let’s explore how this can affect your search engine optimisation (SEO) and why this is important.

Does letter case matter for SEO?

To an internet user, letter case in a URL makes no difference. You can type www.engageweb.co.uk or www.EngageWeb.co.uk into your address bar and it will take you to the same site.

However, Mueller has clarified that the matter is indeed important to Google. Two URLs that appear the same but have different letter cases could be detected as being two domains with the exact same content.

By making sure this is fixed and that the domain has only one letter case – whether uppercase or lowercase – you can prevent your content being mistakenly flagged as duplicate by Google.

Mueller also said in the video:

“By definition, URLs are case sensitive, and also things like slashes at the end do matter. So, technically, yes — these things matter. They make URLs different.”

If your website has different URLs with both lowercase and uppercase letters in the URL, Google will crawl the site twice if there is this issue happening on the site and the crawler will attempt to figure out which domain to index on the search engine. Sometimes, however, this could cause issues.

How can you make sure Google indexes the correct URL?

Using a canonical tag on your site can help to tell Google what URL to index. A canonical tag is a code usually generated by plugins like Yoast (on WordPress) to tell search engines which URL represents the main copy of a page.

At Engage Web, we offer SEO services to improve your online presence through search engines like Google. To find out more, speak with our friendly team.

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Why is page speed important for your website in 2021?

Posted on September 23, 2021

Making sure your website loads quickly for your users is paramount for user experience and search engine optimisation (SEO), but why is this?

A study conducted by (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

What types of SSL certificate are available for your website?

Posted on August 25, 2021

There are four different types of SSL certificate a website can use, but what type does your business need? (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Keep redirects in place for at least a year, says Google

Posted on July 23, 2021

An update from Google has said that if a redirect has been in place on your website for a year, it will now pass permanent signals even if you (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Google Core Web Vitals: What is Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)?

Posted on February 10, 2021

In our final week of looking at Core Web Vitals, we’re going to talk about Cumulative Layout Shift, or (more…)

Posted by Andrew Waterhouse

Google Core Web Vitals: What is First Input Delay (FID)?

Posted on February 3, 2021

In our second part of the Core Web Vitals Series (you can read the first part here), we’re going to look at First Input Delay (FID). So, first of all, what is it?

In short, FID is the time between the user’s first interaction with a page (such as by clicking a link), to when the browser first starts to process the interaction. Time to interaction (TTI) has been a similar metric in the past, though TTI only records how long it took for the page to be interactive, rather than the time to respond to user interaction. FID is a good metric to focus upon to help reduce the clunky feeling of a website.

A good FID score is a delay of less than 100 milliseconds, or 0.1 seconds. Usually, input delay occurs because the browser is busy with another task, so cannot yet respond to the user. Executing a JavaScript file is a common example of what might be keeping it busy. Note that FID only measures the delay in event processing, not the time it takes to complete the event processing time itself.

In the above example, the user just happened to interact when the browser was at the beginning of the main thread’s busiest period. If they had interacted a moment earlier, the browser could respond right away. Waterfall graphs can help identify which scripts are holding up a site from being FID-friendly.

How to improve FID

For a better FID, you need a focus on reducing the impact of third-party code. Slashing the number of tools, plugins, and code elements of your site will go some way to help with this. The work of the main thread needs to be minimal, while request counts are kept low and transfer sizes small.

A great tool to troubleshoot FID is the Chrome User Experience Report. The data collected is powered by real-world users, measuring metrics from the web. The resulting data can be found by inputting your website into PageSpeed Insights and Google’s BigQuery project.

First Input Delay is one of three Core Web Vitals that Google wants to make a part of its search algorithm by May 2021. The earlier you make the necessary changes to make user-experience the focus, the more effective your search engine optimisation (SEO) campaign will be.

In the next blog post, I’ll discuss Cumulative Layout Shift, and the steps you can take to make sure your website is ready for the future of online search.

Posted by Andrew Waterhouse
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