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Mueller Discusses Site Traffic and Core Web Vitals


Core Web Vitals Score Depends on Traffic

Google calculates a websites Core Web Vitals score from actual site visitors who have opted-in for Chrome to measuring the various page experience metrics.

Google Search Console does not show CWV scores for pages that have not met with minimum traffic thresholds.

The person asking the question may be concerned that a publisher with more traffic will have an advantage over a site with less traffic and presumably not pages that are scored for page experience metrics like Core Web Vitals

How Important is Traffic to Core Web Vitals?

The question is based the fact that CWV scores are only computed for sites that have opted-in Chrome users visiting web pages.

This is the question:

“Let’s say the Core Web Vitals values of my website are quite good compared to my competitors.

However my traffic is much lower than my competitors.

How important is site traffic together with Core Web Vitals in the search results? …Can a website with good Core Web Vitals beat the competitor website with millions of visitors in the search results?”

John Mueller svarade:

“So, for Core Web Vitals, the traffic to your site is not important as long as you… reach that threshold that we have data for your website.

Like, if we don’t know anything about your website then obviously we don’t know that maybe it’s a really fast website.

…The data that we use in search is from the Chrome User Experience Report which is aggregated from users that are… opted in to this kind of metric system. That’s essentially what we require.

And then, that’s kind of the baseline. …We have data for your website, we know that users are seeing a fast website.

It doesn’t matter if millions of users are seeing that or just… I don’t know… thousands of users are seeing it.”

John Mueller follows up the above answer by stating unequivocally that the number of visitors is not a factor for Core Web Vitals.

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He explained:

“So, just… kind of the pure number of visitors to your site is not a factor when it comes to core web vitals and generally not a factor for ranking either.

The other thing that I do need to mention here is that Core Web Vitals, the Page Experience, is at the moment not an active ranking signal.

So we announced that for May, that kind of one aspect.”

Next, Mueller emphasizes that content relevance is more important than Core Web Vitals scores.

“And the other thing is that relevance is still by far much more important.”

John Mueller Downplays Ranking Effect of Core Web Vitals

In the next part of his answer, John Mueller downplays the ranking effect of Core Web Vitals.

John Mueller:

“So just because your website is faster with regards to Core Web Vitals than some competitors doesn’t necessarily mean that come May you will jump to position number one in the search results.

We still require that relevance is something that should be kind of available on the site. It should make sense for use to show the site in the search results because, as you can imagine, a really fast website might be one that’s completely empty. But that’s not very useful for users.

It’s useful to keep that in mind when it comes to Core Web Vitals. It is something that users notice. It is something that we will start using for ranking. But it’s not going to change everything completely.

So it’s not going to… destroy your site and remove it from the index if you have it wrong. It’s not going to catapult you from page ten to number one position if you get it right.”

Core Web Vitals are Important

Even though Core Web Vitals ranking effect might not be so great, it’s one of the few known ranking factors that Google is okay with publishers having an influence over.

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Thinking beyond search ranking effect, a quality web page that presents no friction to users may experience more page views and user satisfaction. That’s important, regardless of whether there’s a (small) ranking boost associated with Core Web Vitals.


Watch John Mueller discuss Core Web Vitals at about the 23:30 minute mark.



Google ska betala $391,5 miljoner för uppgörelse över platsspårning, säger statliga AG:er


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.

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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.

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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.”

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• This article is based in part on wire service reports.


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