Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) For SEOs & Developers

Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) For SEOs Developers _ MediaOne SIngapore

Hey there, fellow content creators, marketers, and tech enthusiasts! 🌟

Are you ready to dive into the world of Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)? This might sound like a mouthful, but fear not – we’re here to break it down for you in a fun and friendly way. So, grab your favorite cuppa and let’s unravel the mysteries of CLS together!

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What on Earth is Cumulative Layout Shift?

Alright, let’s start from the top. Cumulative Layout Shift, or CLS for short, is a metric that measures the visual stability of a web page during its loading process.

In simpler terms, it’s all about those annoying instances where you’re about to click on something on a page, and suddenly – whoop! – the layout shifts, causing you to accidentally click on something else. We’ve all been there, and boy, it can be frustrating!

Think about it this way: Imagine you’re at a restaurant, and just as you’re about to take a bite of that delicious-looking burger, the plate suddenly moves, and you end up munching on air instead. Not the best experience, right? Well, the same goes for websites. CLS aims to quantify these unexpected layout shifts and their impact on user experience.

Why CLS Matters for User Experience and SEO

Now, you might be thinking, “Okay, so a little layout shift isn’t that big of a deal, right?” Wrong! While individual layout shifts might seem minor, they can add up and seriously affect the overall user experience.

Imagine visiting a website where images jump around, buttons move, and text shifts while you’re trying to read – it’s like trying to solve a jigsaw puzzle while someone keeps moving the pieces.

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User experience is the name of the game here. Visitors want websites that are smooth, intuitive, and easy to navigate. A high CLS score can lead to frustration, higher bounce rates, and a decline in user engagement. And guess what? Search engines like Google take notice of these poor user experiences and can penalize your site’s SEO ranking as a result. Ouch!

Tackling CLS: Tips for a Smoother User Experience

Fear not, dear developers and marketers! There are ways to tame the CLS beast and ensure a seamless browsing experience for your users. Let’s dig into some practical tips:

1. Optimize Images and Media

Images and videos are often the main culprits behind layout shifts. When they don’t have defined dimensions, the browser might not know how much space to allocate, leading to unexpected movements. To fix this, always set width and height attributes for your media elements, so the browser can reserve the right amount of space from the get-go.

2. Prioritize Above-the-Fold Content

Above-the-fold content refers to what’s visible on the screen without scrolling. Make sure that the critical parts of your webpage load quickly and are stable. Users should be able to start interacting with your site without disruptions, even before everything else loads.

3. Load Fonts Properly

Fonts play a huge role in how a website looks and feels. If the font doesn’t load right away, the browser might use a fallback font temporarily, causing text to jump when the correct font finally kicks in. Use font-display: swap in your CSS to ensure that text remains visible while the preferred font loads.

4. Lazy Loading for Dynamic Content

Lazy loading is your friend when it comes to optimizing page speed and reducing CLS. Implement lazy loading for images, videos, and other non-essential content that appears below the fold. This way, resources are only loaded when they’re actually needed, preventing unexpected layout shifts.

5. Avoid Third-Party Scripts Impact

Third-party scripts, like ads and analytics trackers, can be a major source of CLS problems. These scripts often load asynchronously and can push content around as they load. Consider loading them in a way that doesn’t interfere with your page’s layout. You might also want to evaluate whether all these scripts are truly necessary – sometimes, less is more.

6. Test, Monitor, and Refine

Just like your favorite recipe, your approach to tackling CLS might need a bit of fine-tuning. Regularly test your website using tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or Lighthouse to identify CLS issues and keep track of improvements. Remember, staying vigilant and making continuous adjustments is the key to maintaining a smooth user experience.

CLS and SEO: A Budding Friendship

Now that we’ve covered how CLS impacts user experience, let’s talk about its impact on SEO. Search engines like Google care about delivering the best possible results to their users. If your website is causing visitors to bounce due to poor user experience, search engines might interpret this as a sign that your content isn’t as relevant or valuable as they thought.

Google has explicitly stated that CLS is one of the key factors considered in its Core Web Vitals, a set of user-focused metrics that influence search ranking. In other words, a good CLS score can give your site a boost in the search results, while a high CLS score might lead to a drop. So, if you’re looking to improve your SEO game, don’t underestimate the power of a smooth and stable layout!

Collaborative Efforts: SEOs and Developers Unite!

Remember how peanut butter and jelly come together to make an epic sandwich? Well, the relationship between SEOs and developers can be just as deliciously effective.

When it comes to CLS, these two parties can join forces for an even more impressive outcome.

  • SEOs: As an SEO guru, you’re all about making sure the content ranks high and gets the visibility it deserves. Work closely with developers to ensure that page speed and user experience are top-notch. Provide them with insights on how CLS can impact search rankings, and collaborate to find solutions that benefit both the website’s performance and its SEO potential.
  • Developers: Hey there, coding wizards! You hold the keys to optimizing the website’s performance and layout stability. Pay attention to CLS metrics and collaborate with SEOs to understand the impact of layout shifts on user experience and search ranking. By working together, you can implement the necessary changes and fine-tune the website for maximum awesomeness.
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The Future of CLS and User Experience

As technology and browsing habits continue to evolve, so will the importance of Cumulative Layout Shift. With the rise of mobile browsing and the increasing demand for faster, more seamless experiences, CLS will remain a crucial metric for websites aiming to succeed in both user satisfaction and search engine rankings.

By keeping an eye on emerging trends, staying updated on best practices, and maintaining a collaborative approach between SEOs and developers, you’ll be well-equipped to tackle the challenges that CLS might bring. So, go forth, create captivating content, and craft websites that users will love to explore!

Embracing CLS for a Brighter Digital Future

As we bid adieu to this joyous exploration of Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS), let’s take a moment to reflect on the journey we’ve shared. We’ve learned that CLS isn’t just a technical metric – it’s a reflection of our dedication to providing users with a seamless, frustration-free online experience. Whether you’re a content writer shaping narratives or a developer sculpting code, your role in creating delightful websites cannot be overstated.

In the vast landscape of the digital world, each website is a unique masterpiece, and CLS is but one brushstroke in the grand canvas of user experience. By following best practices, staying informed about industry trends, and fostering collaboration between SEOs and developers, we can collectively shape a brighter and more user-centric digital future.

So, fellow content creators, marketers, and tech aficionados, let’s continue to champion the cause of user-friendly design. Let’s strive to eliminate those pesky layout shifts, making way for websites that captivate, engage, and empower users to explore without hindrance.

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The Ever-Evolving Adventure of CLS Mastery

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Ahoy there, adventurous souls of the digital realm! Our journey through the vibrant landscape of Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) continues, and oh, what a journey it’s been! If you’re just joining us, fret not – we’ve got plenty more to uncover as we sail through the waves of user experience and SEO optimization.

Becoming a CLS Trailblazer

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Now that you’re armed with insights about CLS, it’s time to put on your explorer’s hat and embark on a quest to conquer this metric like a true champion. Remember, the digital world is ever-changing, and the strategies to combat CLS might evolve as well. Keep your finger on the pulse of industry updates and algorithm changes to ensure your website remains at the forefront of user satisfaction.

From Good to Great: CLS Enhancements

You’ve learned the basics, but let’s not stop there! There’s always room to level up your CLS game. Dive deeper into the nuances of CSS optimization, explore advanced lazy loading techniques, and experiment with cutting-edge font loading strategies. The quest for a smoother layout and a happier user experience is an ongoing adventure, and your determination is your most powerful ally.

The Human Touch in a Digital World

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Amidst all the technical intricacies, don’t forget the heart and soul of the digital landscape – your users! As a content writer, you have the power to weave narratives that resonate, inform, and entertain. Your words can draw users in, guiding them through the digital journey with a sense of purpose and delight. Keep your focus on user-centric content that adds value, and you’ll create an unforgettable experience.

A Symphony of Collaboration

Ah, the harmonious collaboration between SEOs and developers – it’s like a symphony where each instrument plays a crucial role in creating a masterpiece. As you work together to tame the CLS beast, remember that communication is your conductor’s baton. Regular check-ins, brainstorming sessions, and a shared understanding of goals will ensure your performance is nothing short of legendary.

Future Horizons: Where CLS Leads Us

The digital landscape is ever-evolving, and so is the significance of CLS. As the way we interact with technology transforms, so too does the emphasis on seamless user experiences. The future holds exciting possibilities – from innovative technologies that mitigate layout shifts to new strategies for optimizing user engagement and search visibility.

Keep an ear to the ground for emerging trends, and let your curiosity guide you. Embrace the challenges and opportunities that come your way, for they are the building blocks of progress in our digital world.

CLS: A Blueprint for Digital Happiness

As we approach the grand finale of our CLS adventure, let’s take a moment to savor the knowledge we’ve gained. Cumulative Layout Shift isn’t just a technical metric; it’s a philosophy of user-first design, a commitment to excellence, and a quest for digital happiness. It’s a reminder that in the midst of codes and algorithms, real people are at the heart of our creations.

So, dear reader, as you march forward on your digital journey, armed with insights about CLS and a determination to create a seamless experience, remember that you’re a beacon of positive change in the vast digital landscape. Your commitment to user satisfaction, your collaboration with fellow professionals, and your zest for innovation make the internet a better place, one layout shift at a time.

Embracing the CLS Odyssey: Your Quest for Excellence

Ahoy, fellow digital navigators! As we set sail on the voyage of understanding Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) even further, let’s remember that every journey is a treasure trove of insights waiting to be discovered. Whether you’re a content creator spinning words into gold or a developer crafting digital realms, the world of CLS is yours to conquer.

CLS: Your North Star in User-Centric Design

Picture this: You’re creating a website that’s not just visually appealing but also intuitive and user-friendly. CLS becomes your guiding star in this quest. It’s the riddle you must solve to ensure that every button, image, and text element stays in place, granting users a seamless journey through your digital masterpiece.

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Empowering User Experience, One Shift at a Time

Remember, at the heart of every line of code and every captivating sentence lies the user experience. Users aren’t just visitors; they’re explorers seeking valuable content, interaction, and inspiration. By optimizing CLS, you’re empowering them to explore your digital realm without the frustration of layout surprises.

Mastering the Dance of CSS and Code

Developers, imagine your code as a choreographed dance – every element has its role, timing, and rhythm. CSS optimization becomes your partner, ensuring that each step is executed flawlessly. Define dimensions, prioritize content, and orchestrate the loading of resources to create a symphony of stability.

The Grand Collaboration: SEOs and Developers Unite

In the bustling digital metropolis, SEOs and developers don’t just coexist; they flourish through collaboration. SEO experts, you illuminate the path towards optimal user experience and search visibility. Developers, you bring that vision to life through meticulous coding. Together, you forge a legacy of websites that users love and search engines adore.

Trailblazing Beyond CLS: A Glimpse of Tomorrow

As the sun sets on our CLS expedition, let’s peer into the horizon of what’s to come. The digital world is in a constant state of evolution, and CLS is a harbinger of changes yet to unfold. Technologies like virtual reality, augmented reality, and AI-driven interactions are poised to transform the way users engage with content. As these innovations take center stage, the need for seamless user experiences will only intensify.

A Heartfelt Finale: Your Role in the CLS Saga

As we approach the final act of our CLS adventure, remember that you’re not just a spectator; you’re a protagonist shaping the narrative. Your dedication to crafting captivating content, your commitment to code that stands the test of user interaction – these are the chapters that users remember.

The CLS Chronicles Continue…

As we bid adieu to this chapter of the CLS saga, let’s acknowledge that this is just one stop on an ever-evolving journey. With each passing day, the digital realm evolves, and so does the role of CLS in shaping user experiences. So, dear traveler of the digital cosmos, continue to explore, learn, and innovate.

As you create websites that leave users smiling, embrace CLS as not just a metric but a philosophy of digital harmony. With your writing prowess and coding finesse, you have the power to revolutionize the way users interact with the digital universe.

Navigating the CLS Universe: Your Voyage of Discovery

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Ahoy there, fellow adventurers of the digital realm! Our quest to uncover the enigma that is Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) continues, and what a journey it’s been! Whether you’re a content creator weaving words of wonder or a developer sculpting the virtual landscape, CLS holds the key to creating experiences that users will treasure.

Charting Your Course with CLS

Imagine you’re a captain navigating uncharted waters, and CLS is your trusty compass. It guides you towards a destination where layouts remain stable, user experience is seamless, and frustration is kept at bay. By taming CLS, you’re crafting a virtual voyage that users will embark upon with delight.

The Elegance of Stable Layouts

Think of CLS as a choreographer ensuring that every element on your website dances in harmony. Images, buttons, and text gracefully maintain their positions, creating an experience that’s fluid and engaging. This ballet of stable layouts ensures that users can explore your digital world without the unexpected leaps and twirls.

From Code to Canvas: CLS Unleashed

Developers, you’re the artists of the digital canvas, wielding your code like paintbrushes. CLS becomes your masterpiece – every line of code ensures that elements load smoothly, delivering an experience that’s both visually captivating and technically impeccable. Prioritize performance, optimize images, and keep animations in check to create a symphony of stability.

A Symphony of Collaboration: SEOs and Developers Unite

In the bustling digital metropolis, SEOs and developers aren’t just allies; they’re co-authors of a narrative that bridges technical excellence with user satisfaction. SEO experts, you illuminate the path towards visibility and engagement. Developers, you’re the architects, ensuring that each element of the website contributes to a harmonious CLS score.

Illuminating the Path Forward: The Future of CLS

As we approach the crossroads of our CLS journey, let’s cast a glance into the future. The digital landscape is ever-evolving, and CLS is a compass that will continue to guide us. With the rise of voice search, AI-driven experiences, and cross-device interactions, the need for seamless layouts will become more pronounced than ever before.

A Standing Ovation for Your Role in the CLS Epic

As our CLS odyssey reaches its crescendo, remember that you’re not merely a spectator – you’re a participant shaping the narrative. Your content, your coding finesse, your dedication to crafting exceptional user experiences – these are the chapters that users remember and the forces that drive the digital revolution.

To CLS Mastery and Beyond!

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Lift your virtual glasses, for you’ve ventured through the heart of Cumulative Layout Shift, unraveling its mysteries and embracing its principles. Here’s to layouts that remain steady, to users who journey effortlessly, and to a future where the CLS journey continues to inspire.

Thank you for joining us on this exhilarating expedition through the universe of Cumulative Layout Shift. As you forge ahead, remember that every creative stroke, every line of code, contributes to a digital realm that’s immersive, enchanting, and thoughtfully designed. Stay curious, stay inspired, and keep igniting the digital universe with your passion! 🚀🌌

About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Social Media




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