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Core Web Vitals: Will Google Give Breaks for Slow Plugins and Apps?

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Core Web Vitals: Will Google Give Breaks for Slow Plugins and Apps?

Google’s Martin Splitt answered a question about what to do about third party must-have functionalities in the form of apps and plugins and whether Google would give publishers a Core Web Vitals break since those apps were made by a third party.

Loren Baker asked a question that discussed the issue of publishers who need marketing and sales related functionalities on their sites that tend to slow down the web page and contribute to poor core web vitals scoring.

The example used was of a Shopify site incorporating email list, review and chatbox functionalities contributing to exceedingly bad core web vitals performance.

But the question applied equally to all third party apps, themes and plugins, regardless of platform, including WordPress.

This is an important question because the problem with publishers being judged on Core Web Vitals performance is that the performance issues do not generally rise through the fault of the publishers.

The fault for the poor performance lies with the makers of the apps, themes, and plugins.

So it feels like it’s not fair for Google to give a low score to a site for using a third party plugin or app that delivers a necessary functionality that users or the publishers need.

Loren Baker asked:

“Is the Core Web Vitals Update going to give people a break, so to speak, if they’re using a third party app which is leading to their site having lower scores than if they would if they had no apps on the page?”

Why Good Core Web Vitals Scores Should be the Focus

Martin Splitt answered by first focusing on Google’s goals for Core Web Vitals, trying to get the publisher to look at it from t that perspective.

Martin:

“I understand where they’re coming from. The answer for all of these questions is pretty much the same.

Think about what are we trying to do with the page experience signal.

What we are trying to do there is we try to quantify what makes the user have a good experience with a page.

And it doesn’t matter what tools are being used, what libraries, frameworks are being used, if there’s JavaScript on the site, if there’s no JavaScript on the site, if there’s apps on the site, if there’s all first party on the site, if it’s using Google analytics or Google Ads or Google Tag Manager- none of that matters.

If it slows down the page, it’s detrimental to the experience of the user. It doesn’t matter where the reason is coming from if it’s… like bad first party code or bad third party code, everything is possible to do with less impact on the core web vitals than it is probably done right now out of not being like aware of that being a problem or a lack of care or other technical reasons that need to be addressed at some point. As developers we’d like to speak of that as technical depth.

So if they make things slower, that reflects in the core web vitals and that’s what matters in the end.”

Which User Experience Matters Most?

Martin acknowledged that many of the functionalities that slow down a site also improve user experience by doing things like helping them accomplish their goals, like contacting the business through chat.

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Martin Splitt explained:

“Sure, I’m seeing comments saying like these apps might actually make the experience better for users, but do they?

Because if it’s like oh yeah this app gives us a chat experience, yes. But a chat can be implemented in a way that does not make the page slower for everyone who does not interact with the chat or even those who want to interact with the chat.”

Martin is referring to the fact that there are ways to minimize the impact of chatbox JavaScript and CSS files by adding element attributes that allows the code to not interfere in the rendering.

For every thing that negatively impacts core web vitals score there is a solution, even for third party advertising code.

The problem that isn’t addressed is that those solutions tend to be outside the scope of many web publishers.

Martin continued:

“It’s not a measure of should we have a chat on our page, yes or no. Yes, if it makes the experience for the user, have a chat.
Just don’t build it in a way that it actually makes the page worse. And that’s the thing.”

In a way, Martin is missing a point about functionalities. Most publishers and ecommerce companies do not have have their own in-house programmers building chat boxes.

Publishers are at the mercy of the content management ecosystem.

Core Web Vitals Aren’t Perfect

Martin next admitted that the core web vitals metrics aren’t the best but pragmatically insisted that it’s the best we have for now.

Martin explained:

“And we can argue about if the core web vitals are …really completely modeling that. I would say they don’t. But it’s the best approximation that we have right now.

And actually measuring performance and measuring experience for users is really, really hard. And we will see an evolving set of metrics as part of the core web vitals evolving over time.”

Give Users a Good Page Experience

Martin next encouraged publishers to focus on the page experience.

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Martin Splitt on giving a good user experience:

“But …generally speaking the idea is to give pages that are giving a good experience to users a boost.

And I don’t think a good experience is if I am reading something about the article I’m going to potentially going to buy and then whatever I’m reading is shifted down because there’s some review stars popping in on the top.

Does that mean you shouldn’t have review stars? No.

Have review stars but make space for them so that when they pop in nothing else moves on the page.”

Good Web Vitals Scores Are Possible

It can seem overwhelming to solve core web vitals issues but Martin encourages publishers to keep trying by stating that it’s not an impossible problem to solve. He said that good scores can be within reach.

Martin Splitt:

“It’s not that it’s impossible to do this. I get this question a lot with cookie consent banners. So, is a cookie consent banner that I have to have for legal reasons, is that going to drag down my CLS?

Probably yes if it’s implemented in a way that is disruptive to the user it might actually cause cumulative layout shift.

If it’s only causing a little bit of it, that’s not even a problem. We’re not saying zero is what you need to target.

You’re needing to target something that is reasonable, which I think is 0.1, which is the percentage of the effective viewport and the amount of shifting that happens.

So there is a certain amount of shifting that can happen without basically falling under the threshold of what core web vitals consider a good experience.

But if you implement it, let’s call it lazily and just go yeah it’s going to be fine, yes it’s going to move everything below once it pops in then that’s not a great way of implementing it and you might want to reconsider the way that you implement it.”

Ask APP/Plugin Developers to Improve their Products

Martin Splitt now offers useful information about must-use apps that deliver a poor user experience.

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Martin said:

“If you’re not implementing it because it’s coming from a third party, let them know, tell them, Hey by the way we noticed that your solution does this. We really like your solution but we really don’t like how it kind of treats our users. So would you consider fixing that?

And there are ways of doing it, it just needs to be done.”

Screenshot of Loren Baker Interviewing Google’s Martin Splitt

Screenshot of Loren Baker and Martin Splitt interviewScreenshot of Loren Baker interviewing Martin Splitt about Core Web Vitals for Search Engine Journal

Three Core Web Vitals Insights

Martin shared a lot and perhaps a general way to characterize them is with three points.

The three points below isn’t all you need to know. Martin shared a lot of details.

These are three points that summarize what he said:

  1. Review whether an app or functionality is truly needed and if it does provide a must-need user experience. If it’s somewhat superfluous, consider getting rid of it.
  2. Implement site functionality in a way that doesn’t interfere with page rendering. This may mean editing the code to add additional element attributes (like the lazy load image attribute or link rel=”preload”). Until template and plugin makers get on the ball about this it’s unfortunately in the site publisher’s lane to fix it, whether they like it or not.
  3. Contact the app, plugin and theme developers and ask them to create better implementations.

Citation

Watch the SEJ interview with Martin Splitt, starting at the 8:00 minute mark:

Searchenginejournal.com

APPS

Best ASO Tips To Boost Your App Search In 2022

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You need your application to be really effective in the overpopulated application market. Then, at that point, you will have to drive downloads to endure. So when it’s all said and done, you must account for yourself. Get your application the consideration it merits.

The uplifting news, however, is that customers love to download applications – last year, we downloaded in excess of 200 billion applications around the world, and that figure is set to increment to 258 billion every year by 2022 as cell phone reception increments.

Assuming you need to be seen and have your application downloaded by however many clients as could reasonably be expected, then, at that point, you should begin by taking a gander at the application store.

Underneath, we’ve assembled probably the best application store improvement methods to assist you with creating more downloads in 2021 and then some…

Start with Your Application Name 

The odds are you as of now have an extraordinary name for your application, yet an appropriately advanced application is about significantly more than marking.

Assuming you need to amplify transparency and guarantee you’re showing up when clients look for applications like yours, you ought to remember the primary keywords for your application name or title, comparable to how you’d make a title label while improving a site page.

You could begin with your application name so it tends to be plainly recognized, thus it appears on the home screen of gadgets.

Then, at that point, you can add a scramble or vertical bar prior to adding a few pertinent watchwords to your speciality, or even put your application name in quotes as we did with FORE Business Golf Networking.

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Urge Users to Leave Reviews 

You could ask for reviews by clients through the means of your site, or through an in-application notice toward the finish of their meeting, yet make sure to restrict the number of pop-ups you execute with the goal that you don’t disturb or disappoint your clients, as this could urge them to erase your application.

We’d support all application engineers and entrepreneurs to react to criticism on their applications, as this can further develop client relations and resolve issues in an open arena.

Zero in on Your Application Depiction 

Your application depiction is your principle assemblage of text your landing page content, in a manner of speaking. Utilize a site like KeywordTool.io to discover information on your picked catchphrases to expand your openness. As portrayals are shortened, ensure you remember the main data for the initial three lines of your depiction, and afterwards add things like social confirmation, emoticon, and suggestions to take action to build commitment and downloads.

Incorporate Appealings Screen Captures 

Pictures and recordings won’t help your application rank, yet they will expand changes and assist clients with working out whether it’s an application they truly need.

There’s a little guide in empowering clients toward downloading your application if in any case, they’re not going to interface with it, or download and leave a negative survey when they understand it wasn’t what was promoted.

Assuming you need to ‘tart up’ your item page, then, at that point, you can add marking and extra text and data and designs to your recordings and screen capture, yet they ought not to diminish your item.

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Pay for App Store or Play Store 

As we have SEO and pay-per-click, you need to work one next to the other (one is a gradual methodology with long haul benefits – the other is a speedy success yet requires an endless spending plan), application store promotions can be utilized to get the message out with regards to your new programming and assist you with positioning at the highest point of query items pages – in front of your opposition and enormous names in the application world.

Keep in mind, you’ll need to focus on the right crowd and art an advertisement that will assist you with changing over and that since you’re paying for situations, that doesn’t mean clients will download or cooperate with your application.

Wrapping Up!

You can employ a group of  App  Store Optimization Services suppliers to benefit a scope of application store improvement administrations, including watchword advancement, resource enhancement, and restriction to guarantee your application is seen by individuals that matter.

We have long periods of involvement in creating and showcasing applications and have assisted different customers with expanding their downloads by infiltrating rewarding and regularly undiscovered business sectors.

Author:
Prachi Gupta likes to write information about Digital Marketing Trends that can help audience to grow their business.

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WhatsApp will finally let users encrypt their chat backups in the cloud

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WhatsApp said on Friday it will give its two billion users the option to encrypt their chat backups to the cloud, taking a significant step to put a lid on one of the tricky ways private communication between individuals on the app can be compromised.

The Facebook-owned service has end-to-end encrypted chats between users for more than a decade. But users have had no option but to store their chat backup to their cloud — iCloud on iPhones and Google Drive on Android — in an unencrypted format.

Tapping these unencrypted WhatsApp chat backups on Google and Apple servers is one of the widely known ways law enforcement agencies across the globe have for years been able to access WhatsApp chats of suspect individuals.

Now WhatsApp says it is patching this weak link in the system.

“WhatsApp is the first global messaging service at this scale to offer end-to-end encrypted messaging and backups, and getting there was a really hard technical challenge that required an entirely new framework for key storage and cloud storage across operating systems,” said Facebook’s chief executive Mark Zuckerberg in a post announcing the new feature.

Store your own encryption keys

The company said it has devised a system to enable WhatsApp users on Android and iOS to lock their chat backups with encryption keys. WhatsApp says it will offer users two ways to encrypt their cloud backups, and the feature is optional.

In the “coming weeks,” users on WhatsApp will see an option to generate a 64-digit encryption key to lock their chat backups in the cloud. Users can store the encryption key offline or in a password manager of their choice, or they can create a password that backs up their encryption key in a cloud-based “backup key vault” that WhatsApp has developed. The cloud-stored encryption key can’t be used without the user’s password, which isn’t known by WhatsApp.

Image Credits: WhatsApp/supplied

“We know that some will prefer the 64-digit encryption key whereas others want something they can easily remember, so we will be including both options. Once a user sets their backup password, it is not known to us. They can reset it on their original device if they forget it,” WhatsApp said.

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“For the 64-digit key, we will notify users multiple times when they sign up for end-to-end encrypted backups that if they lose their 64-digit key, we will not be able to restore their backup and that they should write it down. Before the setup is complete, we’ll ask users to affirm that they’ve saved their password or 64-digit encryption key.”

A WhatsApp spokesperson told TechCrunch that once an encrypted backup is created, previous copies of the backup will be deleted. “This will happen automatically and there is no action that a user will need to take,” the spokesperson added.

Potential regulatory pushback?

The move to introduce this added layer of privacy is significant and one that could have far-reaching implications.

End-to-end encryption remains a thorny topic of discussion as governments continue to lobby for backdoors. Apple was reportedly pressured to not add encryption to iCloud Backups after the FBI complained, and while Google has offered users the ability to encrypt their data stored in Google Drive, the company allegedly didn’t tell governments before it rolled out the feature.

When asked by TechCrunch whether WhatsApp, or its parent firm Facebook, had consulted with government bodies — or if it had received their support — during the development process of this feature, the company declined to discuss any such conversations.

“People’s messages are deeply personal and as we live more of our lives online, we believe companies should enhance the security they provide their users. By releasing this feature, we are providing our users with the option to add this additional layer of security for their backups if they’d like to, and we’re excited to give our users a meaningful advancement in the safety of their personal messages,” the company told TechCrunch.

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WhatsApp also confirmed that it will be rolling out this optional feature in every market where its app is operational. It’s not uncommon for companies to withhold privacy features for legal and regulatory reasons. Apple’s upcoming encrypted browsing feature, for instance, won’t be made available to users in certain authoritarian regimes, such as China, Belarus, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, Turkmenistan, Uganda and the Philippines.

At any rate, Friday’s announcement comes days after ProPublica reported that private end-to-end encrypted conversations between two users can be read by human contractors when messages are reported by users.

“Making backups fully encrypted is really hard and it’s particularly hard to make it reliable and simple enough for people to use. No other messaging service at this scale has done this and provided this level of security for people’s messages,” Uzma Barlaskar, product lead for privacy at WhatsApp, told TechCrunch.

“We’ve been working on this problem for many years, and to build this, we had to develop an entirely new framework for key storage and cloud storage that can be used across the world’s largest operating systems and that took time.”

TechCrunch

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Dispo launches a test to gauge user interest in selling their photos as NFTs

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Dispo, the photo-sharing app that emulates disposable cameras, started rolling out a test yesterday that will record user interest in selling photos as NFTs. Some users will now see a sell button on their photos, and when they tap it, they can sign up to be notified when the ability to sell Dispo photos launches.

CEO and co-founder Daniel Liss told TechCrunch that Dispo is still deciding how it will incorporate NFT sales into the app, which is why the platform is piloting a test with its users. Dispo doesn’t know yet what blockchain it would use, if it would partner with an NFT marketplace or what cut of sales Dispo would take.

“I think it’s safe to say from the test that there will be an experience native to the Dispo app,” Liss said. “There are a number of ways it could look — there could be a native experience within Dispo that then connects through an API to another platform, and in turn, they’re our partner, but to the community, it would look native to the Dispo app.”

Image Credits: Dispo

This marks a new direction for the social media app, which seeks to redefine the photo-sharing experience by only letting users see the photos they took at 9 AM the next morning. From Dispo’s perspective, this gimmick helps users share more authentically, since you take one photo and then you’re done — the app isn’t conducive to taking dozens of selfies and posting the “best” image of yourself. But though it only launched in December 2019, Dispo has already faced both buzzy hype and devastating controversy.

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Until about a year ago, the app was called David’s Disposables, named after co-founder and YouTuber David Dobrik. The app was downloaded over a million times in the first week after its release and hit No. 1 on the App Store charts. In March 2021, the app dropped its waitlist and relaunched with social network features, but just weeks later, Insider reported sexual assault allegations against a member of Vlog Squad, Dobrik’s YouTube prank ensemble. In response, Spark Capital severed ties with the company, leading to Dobrik’s departure. Other investors like Seven Seven Six and Unshackled Ventures, which contributed to the company’s $20 million Series A round, announced that they would donate any profits from their investments in Dispo to organizations working with survivors of sexual assault.

Liss told TechCrunch in June, when the company confirmed its Series A, that Dobrik’s role with the company was as a marketing partner — Liss has been CEO since the beginning. In light of the controversy, Liss said the app focused on improving the product itself and took a step back from promotion.

According to data from the app analytics firm SensorTower, Dispo has reached an estimated 4.7 million global installs to date since launch. Though the app saw the most downloads in January 2020, when it was installed over 1 million times, the app’s next best month came in March 2021, when it removed its waitlist — that month, about 616,000 people downloaded Dispo. Between March and the end of August, the app was downloaded around 1.4 million times, which is up 118% year over year compared to the same time frame in 2020 — but it should be expected that this year’s numbers would be higher, since last year, the app’s membership was exclusive.

Image Credits: Dispo

Now, with the announcement that Dispo is pursuing NFTs, Liss hopes that his company won’t just change how people post photos, but what the relationship will be between platforms and the content that users create.

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“Why NFTs? The most powerful memories of our lives have value. And they have economic value, because we created them, and the past of social media fails to recognize that,” Liss told TechCrunch. “As a result, the only way that a creator with a big following is compensated is by selling directly to a brand, as opposed to profiting from the content itself.”

Adding NFT sales to the app offers Dispo a way to profit from a cut of user sales, but it stands to question how adding NFT sales could impact the community-focused feel of Dispo.

“I think there is tremendous curiosity and interest,” Liss said. “But these problems and questions are why we need more data.”

TechCrunch

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