Google’s John Mueller on the importance of Core Web Vitals
We know that Core Web Vitals (CWV) would play a big role as a search engine ranking factor, but by how much? And is it really that big of a deal that some SEOs — and, especially, Google — have been making it?
Google’s John Mueller recently confirmed the importance of Core Web Vitals and termed it as “more than a tie-breaker.”
Is CWV a big deal?
There has been some skepticism about how important Core Web Vitals would be. This started because John Mueller once said about Core Web Vitals that “relevance is still by far much more important.”
A Core Web Vitals FAQ published by Google also downplayed the importance of CVW. The FAQ page mentioned the following:
“Page experience is just one of many signals that are used to rank pages.
Keep in mind that intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a page with a subpar page experience may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.”
More than a tie-breaker
A post on Reddit recently questioned the importance of Core Web Vitals by asking:
“Anyone else not buying Core Web Vitals?
I just find it hard to believe that this actually becomes a greater part of the ranking algo. Has anyone seen dramatic gains or decreases based on it so far?”
Another poster agreed with the concern and replied:
“I believe Google admitted it’s basically just a tie breaker.”
That’s when Google’s John Mueller chimed in and confirmed that Core Web Vitals is indeed important and worth paying attention to.
“It is a ranking factor, and it’s more than a tie-breaker,” says John Mueller.
“But it also doesn’t replace relevance. Depending on the sites you work on, you might notice it more, or you might notice it less.
As an SEO, a part of your role is to take all of the possible optimizations and figure out which ones are worth spending time on. Any SEO tool will spit out 10s or 100s of “recommendations”, most of those are going to be irrelevant to your site’s visibility in search.
Finding the items that make sense to work on takes experience.”
John also highlighted that CVW helps improve user experience, apart from being an important search engine ranking factor.
“The other thing to keep in mind with core web vitals is that it’s more than a random ranking factor, it’s also something that affects your site’s usability after it ranks (when people actually visit).
If you get more traffic (from other SEO efforts) and your conversion rate is low, that traffic is not going to be as useful as when you have a higher conversion rate (assuming UX/speed affects your conversion rate, which it usually does).
CWV is a great way of recognizing and quantifying common user annoyances.”
As Google is focusing more and more on user experience, we expect Core Web Vitals to be a bigger part in the future. We also expect Google to introduce similar factors that focus more on user experience — beyond just being search ranking factors.