Google’s Core Web Vitals, which can be measured with Page Speed Insights, is one of the latest, most talked-about Google updates.
On Google’s most recent webmaster webinar session, John Mueller (Search Advocate at Google), fielded a question:
“What’s the benefit in getting greener with regards to Core Web Vitals? We have most of our site in the green, but would like to understand what’s the value of making the scores even faster?”
No Direct SEO Benefit…
John Mueller’s response was, “Probably nothing, so at least from an SEO point of view, if you’re already in the green…and you’re seeing that from the real user metrics as well, then essentially, from an SEO point of view from a ranking point of view, we would not be changing anything if you get even better than that.”
…But Still Worth it
“However, when when it comes to things like real user metrics, it is something where you always have this variance of speeds and kind of metrics that we see from users, and if you make sure that your data is kind of even more in the green then, it’ll be a little bit more stable in the green when it comes to the field data that is actually used in search console so that’s something where you’re kind of making it more certain that we’re seeing your site as being good…”
So, what I think John is saying is that there might be some difference between field data and lab data. I actually wrote a news item about field and lab data here. (Basically, think of field data as the way a real user experiences your site, and lab data as how a search bot ‘experiences’ your site.)
The more ‘green’ your scores are, the more stable and consistent people might experience your site. (Plus, if you think about it from a technical perspective, a page that’s…say….99/100 in Page Speed Insights has a green enough score to hopefully make up for small technical glitches, like a slight server hiccup.)
John also said that “…if you’re already in the green, then you’re doing a lot of things really well. The other effect there that you might see is, just like the non-SEO effects, if users are seeing that your site is fantastic in with regards to loading and interaction usability, then that’s something where you might see some indirect effects: that they spend more time on your site or recommend it more and that’s always a good thing too…”
Of course, you might see a ranking boost or SEO benefit if you move from a lower color in Page Speed Insights to the green. But, if you’re already well into the green, maybe not, but it’s still worth it.