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Not a Publisher? AMP Pages for the Rest of Us

3 MINUTE READ | March 3, 2016

Not a Publisher? AMP Pages for the Rest of Us

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John Greer

John Greer has written this article. More details coming soon.

The new Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) have been focused around publishers, but is there use for them by other brands on their own sites as well?

Overview of AMP

AMP is an open-source project by Google and Twitter to make simplified, ultra-fast mobile pages. The architecture of the page is built to be as fast as possible, and the bloated CSS, JavaScript, ad tracking, etc. is reduced to a minimum. The idea is that keeping up with the crowd of mobile-users that aren’t on Wi-Fi or a fast cell network requires a different approach.

Google – and potentially others – can serve AMP pages (see screen capture below) to users on a slow connection:

AMP News Result in Google

Anyone can make an AMP-enabled page, though it takes some changes to the code. For WordPress sites, there is a plug-in available to get started (as of today, the plug-in is in beta). However, for sites on platforms like Adobe Experience Manager, Demandware, Magento, think of building a new template from scratch.

Page Types

An AMP page can technically be the only version a page; however, it seems better to have a normal version for fast users and an AMP version for slower users. Serving something to slow users is probably better rather than nothing. At the same time, most brands would should serve a more feature-rich page to users on fast connections.

Publishers are the main target for AMP as they have content that works well here. For a retailers, manufacturers, or other brand site, some pages may work well as AMP pages, such as:

  • The brand blog. Blogs are considered a good fit, and again WordPress already has a plug-in

  • Content pages like buying guides

  • Support pages or utility pages (e.g. shipping info)

Other pages are not a good fit – how do you strip down a product page to an AMP version? Most marketers are not going to be cool with removing an “Add to Cart” button.  Forms, interactive JavaScript, and many other standard shopping requirements are not available with AMP.

That said, the HTML standards for AMP aren’t completely closed off – iframes and a few other areas may leave some creative options in the future.

UX for AMP Pages

When building these pages out, ask yourself about the user experience as well:

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  • What experience do you want users to have when they click onto another page after landing on an AMP page? An AMP version of a category, or the normal version?

  • You can have tracking, but you’ll need to set it up differently than the out-of-the-box version.

  • These pages are bare-bones, but should you add a “related posts” call-to-action? What about breadcrumbs?

  • Consider adding a link back to the normal version of the page as well.

  • You may want to alert users that this is an AMP page, not the fully featured page. Users shouldn’t be left with the impression that this is the brand’s main version of this page and that functionality is limited.

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