Google is always trying to improve the service it provides to online searchers. In an attempt to encourage web developers to configure their websites ‘correctly’, it’s just released its new web.dev tool, which is configured to work with Chrome.
Designed by Google, for Google
The web.dev program is designed to assess a website to ensure that it’s clearly laid out and conforms to best practice. But this is where some pundits question the software’s real value when it comes to its SEO scoring process.
Websites are given an overall mark across a range of criteria, including meta description inclusion, legibility of fonts, use of title tags and the use of descriptive tags in links. But the results are very much tailored towards making it easier for Google’s own web crawlers to access and log the website, rather than offering web visitors a better online experience.
It’s still early days, so the software is likely to be refined, but first impressions seem to be that, although the web.dev program fulfils a need, that need is far more concerned with Google itself, rather than the people undertaking online searches.
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Software still in the beta phase of development
It’s important to point out that the web.dev software is not yet completely ready for general use, as it’s still only available in a beta version. This means that there are still a number of bugs and glitches in the program, which have yet to be ironed out, so it can’t be completely relied upon as yet.
In fact, according to a report by Search Engine Journal, even their own staff can be flummoxed by the software. Vahan Petrosyan, a developer for the website, states that he spent hours attempting to fix a non-existent problem on their website, only to find that there was no problem at all – it was simply a bug within the software.
It seems likely that the web.dev program will become a useful addition to a developer’s arsenal of tools, but the jury is still out on how useful the software will ultimately prove to be.