Google is quickly expanding the number of ways site owners can measure Core Web Vitals, now offering 6 ways in total.
Core Web Vitals were introduced just weeks ago, and at the time they could only be measured using the Chrome UX report.
With the announcement that Core Web Vitals will be incorporated into Google’s ranking algorithm, the company is adding measurement capabilities to many of its existing tools.
Core Web Vitals can now be measured using:
- Search Console
- PageSpeed Insights
- Chrome DevTools
- Chrome UX Report
- Web Vitals Extension
Here’s more about using each of these tools to measure Core Web Vitals.
There’s a new Core Web Vitals report in Search Console to help site owners to evaluate pages across an entire site.
The report identifies groups of pages that require attention, based on real-world data from the Chrome UX report.
With this report, be aware that URLs will be omitted if they do not have a minimum amount of reporting data.
PageSpeed Insights has been upgraded to use Lighthouse 6.0, which makes it capable of measuring Core Web Vitals in both the lab and field sections of the report.
Core Web Vitals are annotated with a blue ribbon as shown below.
Lighthouse was recently upgraded to version 6.0, which includes additional audits, new metrics, and a newly composed performance score.
Two of these new metrics added are Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS).
These metrics are lab implementations of Core Web Vitals and provide diagnostic information for optimizing user experience.
The third new metric — Total Blocking Time (TBT) — is said to correlate well with First Input Delay (FID), which is another Core Web Vitals metric.
All of the products that Lighthouse powers are updated to reflect the latest version.
Chrome UX Report
Also referred to as CrUX, this report is is a public dataset of real user experience data on millions of websites.
The Chrome UX report measures field versions of all the Core Web Vitals, which means it reports on real-world data rather than lab data.
Google has recently updated the report with a new Core Web Vitals landing page.
The report can be accessed here.
Chrome DevTools has been updated to help site owners find and fix visual instability issues on a page that can contribute to Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS).
Select a Layout Shift to view its details in the Summary tab. To visualize where the shift itself occurred, hover over the Moved from and Moved to fields.
Chrome DevTools also measures Total Blocking Time (TBT), which is useful when it ones to improving First Input Delay (FID).
TBT is now shown in the footer of the Chrome DevTools Performance panel when you measure page performance.
Performance optimizations that improve TBT in the lab should also improve FID.
Web Vitals Extension
A new extension, now available to install from the Chrome Web Store, measures the three Core Web Vitals metrics in real-time.
You can download and install the extension here.
Google to pay $391.5 million settlement over location tracking, state AGs say
Google has agreed to pay a $391.5 million settlement to 40 states to resolve accusations that it tracked people’s locations in violation of state laws, including snooping on consumers’ whereabouts even after they told the tech behemoth to bug off.
Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry said it is time for Big Tech to recognize state laws that limit data collection efforts.
“I have been ringing the alarm bell on big tech for years, and this is why,” Mr. Landry, a Republican, said in a statement Monday. “Citizens must be able to make informed decisions about what information they release to big tech.”
The attorneys general said the investigation resulted in the largest-ever multistate privacy settlement. Connecticut Attorney General William Tong, a Democrat, said Google’s penalty is a “historic win for consumers.”
“Location data is among the most sensitive and valuable personal information Google collects, and there are so many reasons why a consumer may opt out of tracking,” Mr. Tong said. “Our investigation found that Google continued to collect this personal information even after consumers told them not to. That is an unacceptable invasion of consumer privacy, and a violation of state law.”
Location tracking can help tech companies sell digital ads to marketers looking to connect with consumers within their vicinity. It’s another tool in a data-gathering toolkit that generates more than $200 billion in annual ad revenue for Google, accounting for most of the profits pouring into the coffers of its corporate parent, Alphabet, which has a market value of $1.2 trillion.
The settlement is part of a series of legal challenges to Big Tech in the U.S. and around the world, which include consumer protection and antitrust lawsuits.
Though Google, based in Mountain View, California, said it fixed the problems several years ago, the company’s critics remained skeptical. State attorneys general who also have tussled with Google have questioned whether the tech company will follow through on its commitments.
The states aren’t dialing back their scrutiny of Google’s empire.
Last month, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said he was filing a lawsuit over reports that Google unlawfully collected millions of Texans’ biometric data such as “voiceprints and records of face geometry.”
The states began investigating Google’s location tracking after The Associated Press reported in 2018 that Android devices and iPhones were storing location data despite the activation of privacy settings intended to prevent the company from following along.
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich went after the company in May 2020. The state’s lawsuit charged that the company had defrauded its users by misleading them into believing they could keep their whereabouts private by turning off location tracking in the settings of their software.
Arizona settled its case with Google for $85 million last month. By then, attorneys general in several other states and the District of Columbia had pounced with their own lawsuits seeking to hold Google accountable.
Along with the hefty penalty, the state attorneys general said, Google must not hide key information about location tracking, must give users detailed information about the types of location tracking information Google collects, and must show additional information to people when users turn location-related account settings to “off.”
States will receive differing sums from the settlement. Mr. Landry’s office said Louisiana would receive more than $12.7 million, and Mr. Tong’s office said Connecticut would collect more than $6.5 million.
The financial penalty will not cripple Google’s business. The company raked in $69 billion in revenue for the third quarter of 2022, according to reports, yielding about $13.9 billion in profit.
Google downplayed its location-tracking tools Monday and said it changed the products at issue long ago.
“Consistent with improvements we’ve made in recent years, we have settled this investigation which was based on outdated product policies that we changed years ago,” Google spokesman Jose Castaneda said in a statement.
Google product managers Marlo McGriff and David Monsees defended their company’s Search and Maps products’ usage of location information.
“Location information lets us offer you a more helpful experience when you use our products,” the two men wrote on Google’s blog. “From Google Maps’ driving directions that show you how to avoid traffic to Google Search surfacing local restaurants and letting you know how busy they are, location information helps connect experiences across Google to what’s most relevant and useful.”
The blog post touted transparency tools and auto-delete controls that Google has developed in recent years and said the private browsing Incognito mode prevents Google Maps from saving an account’s search history.
Mr. McGriff and Mr. Monsees said Google would make changes to its products as part of the settlement. The changes include simplifying the process for deleting location data, updating the method to set up an account and revamping information hubs.
“We’ll provide a new control that allows users to easily turn off their Location History and Web & App Activity settings and delete their past data in one simple flow,” Mr. McGriff and Mr. Monsees wrote. “We’ll also continue deleting Location History data for users who have not recently contributed new Location History data to their account.”
• This article is based in part on wire service reports.