Google’s John Mueller analyzed the website core web vitals calculation with users from slow internet countries or regions.
Are you residing in slow internet connection country?
In the Google Office Hours Hangout, Google’s John Mueller answered whether the “core web vitals” score takes into account the user’s website from a country with slow internet speeds.
How the issue detected?
The person who asked the question indicated that they had updated the website and scored 100 points in the lab test. However, when they updated the field data, he found that the field score (based on actual visitors) they reported in Google Search Console actually decreased and was significantly lower than the simulated score predicted by Lighthouse.
The person who asked the question confirmed that they knew the difference between the laboratory data and the field data, and that it took time to update the field data.
What was the actual question?
The core of the question is why the simulated lab data reflects the changes made to improve the core web vitals score, while the indicators shown by Google Search Console are getting worse.
Google’s John Mueller Reply 1
When Mueller began to respond, he reminded the person who asked the question and reported that there was a delay in the field data.
Persons Reply 1
The person who asked the question reiterated that they understood this and had taken it into consideration, they waited more than 28 days to see the updated score, and the score was worse.
Mueller Reply 2
“One thing that I would try to do there is to try to figure out which part of Core Web Vitals is affected by that, if it’s like Largest Contentful Pain or if it’s CLS.
And based on that, try to figure out where it might be coming from.”
“One of the things that generally happens with the lab versus field data is that with the lab data it’s basically an assumption.
It’s an approximation of what our systems think might happen in the field. Because there are just so many unknowns out there that depends a little bit on your users, where they’re coming from, what kind of devices they have… all of that.
Which means that you can use the lab data to incrementally improve but you don’t necessarily see a clear connection between the lab results and the field results. I don’t know if that’s something that might be playing a role there…”
Persons Reply 2
The follow-up question asks if you have considered reducing your internet speed in different countries / regions. You want to know if countries with slower mobile connections have different scores.
He went on to point out that this can put your website at a disadvantage in developed countries where countries with faster internet connections make up the majority.
Mueller Reply 3
“I don’t know what the final setup there will be.
It is something where we have country information in Chrome User Experience Report data. So it is something where we’d be able to figure out where users are primarily coming from.
But the general idea is still kind of that users should be able to have a good experience.
And if the bulk of your users sees a slow experience, regardless of why, then essentially that’s what will apply there.
So that’s at least from what I know, that’s kind of the general standpoint there.
It’s like if 90% of your users are coming from locations that are slow and essentially 90% of your users have this …sub-optimal experience with your site, then that’s kind of what will be taken into account.”
Blocking Slow Internet Countries is the solution?
The idea has been established, and blocking certain countries can help Core Web Vitals score. Someone asked Martin Splitt in January 2021.
No. That’s thinking that is laser focused on the Core Web Vitals and that’s really, really risky.”
A, Because people from these countries, if they want to access your website, they will through a proxy or what’s called a “VPN” which really is mostly a proxy for most cases.
And then the speed is even slower, so not helping.
Core Web Vitals and Users From Slow Countries
According to John Mueller, he said there will be no subsidies for websites whose users come from countries / regions with slower internet connections.
The meaning and cause of the problem is that this seems to put the website at a disadvantage compared to websites whose users are mainly from countries with fast internet.
Businesses with fast Internet users do not necessarily compete with websites whose user base is mainly in countries with slower Internet speeds, because their user bases come from fast countries.
The extension of the user base to countries / regions with fast internet is the domain of the country / region code (.uk, .in, .jp, etc.), the language and other factors (for example, obvious tips on positioning international (and “un-targeting”)) in the Google search console.
The Core Web Vitals ranking has little influence and will not be as influential as other more important signals that help Google understand the geographic and linguistic relevance of the site.