Google’s been working to speed up mobile web experiences on several fronts, AMP being the most visible of these efforts. On Wednesday, the company announced a change to the way it will handle tracking parameters appended to AdWords landing page URLs.
Processing tracking codes can bog down page load time by “hundreds of milliseconds” and hurt campaign performance, says Google. Instead of processing the tracking with the landing page, Google is introducing “parallel tracking” to process the tracking URL, the AdWords click tracker and possible redirects in the background while the user goes straight to the landing page.
Currently, the tracking URL, AdWords click tracker and any redirects load before the user sees the landing page. Google says it’s seen the change help improve page load times by several seconds for users on slower networks.
Parallel tracking will start rolling out later this year and become the default tracking method in early 2018. It will initially be optional and only available for Search Network and Shopping campaigns.
Advertisers working with third-party tracking template providers should check in with them about this change now, because the providers may have to make updates to accommodate parallel tracking.
Google says it is working with some “key partners,” but “[p]roviders will need to make changes to their platform that could take several months to complete, so it’s important to get started early.”