What is INP and how does it work?

Interaction to Next Paint illustration

Published on

12 Mars 2024

Interaction to Next Paint

Today, Google has updated its Core Web Vitals metrics, transitioning from First Input Delay (FID) to Interaction to Next Paint (INP). This update introduces a new metric that will influence Google's ranking criteria – potentially affecting your site's organic search performance if it remains unoptimized.

So, what exactly is INP, and how does it work?


What is INP (Interaction to Next Paint)?

INP is a performance metric that measures how users interact with a website. Simply put, INP calculates the time from each action on your website, like pressing a key, clicking, or tapping, to the moment when a response to this action is displayed on the screen.

The longest delay observed in these interactions becomes the INP score.

However, there are specific nuances. For instance, if a site is generally responsive but has a single instance of delayed response, it won't necessarily affect the INP metric, as Google excludes the slowest interaction out of every 50. It's important to note that many sites might not reach this threshold of 50 interactions, often making the slowest response time the definitive INP score.

Unlike the older FID metric, which only considered the first user interaction, INP evaluates all user interactions before determining a singular score. This is a key difference between the two measurements.


What types of interactions influence INP?

The interactions that impact INP can originate from various sources, including JavaScript, CSS, native browser functionalities (such as form elements), or a combination of these components.


User Experience and INP

INP is closely associated with the phenomenon of rage-clicks, where users repeatedly click on an unresponsive element on a website out of frustration.

For example, when you try to open a menu on your phone and it doesn't work, so you click again, but then it opens and immediately closes due to your additional click.

It's a frustrating experience, and Google is now focusing on this with INP to improve how websites interact with users.

Bad User Experience

Learn more about INP

For additional insights into INP, check out this article from Google or watch the Google YouTube video for insights.


To Conclude

INP has become a Core Web Vital and will impact search rankings, whether we're ready or not. If your INP isn't optimized yet, reach out to us!

We've successfully improved INP for several clients and can address your performance issues as well. 

Interested in learning more about INP or web performance? Stay tuned! We'll be back with more details on this metric, including tips for improvement, monitoring advice, case studies, and much more.

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