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Google wants to change email forever. Are brands ready?

In February, Google announced accelerated mobile pages (AMP) for email in an attempt to forever change the way email marketing operates. Simply put, AMP is a technology designed by Google for making websites load faster.

Since 2016, websites with AMP have seen performance improvements and received more SEO traffic from Google. Despite a costly implementation and set-up, sites that rely on SEO and mobile traffic have embraced AMP.

But there are limitations.

At the moment, only Gmail has announced compatibility with the new system. Gmail is the second most popular email client in the world making up 26% of all email openings. While that number is significant, Google will have to enlist other industry players such as Apple and Microsoft for it to become mainstream.

AMP for email also comes with its own set of technical challenges. This includes the requirement of a new multipurpose internet mail extension (MIME) and a new development language that is very strict on validation and goes against some of the foundations of current email development.

The initiative has also been criticised by some as a yet another attempt by Google to extend its influence and control over other organisations’ content. Publishers across the globe are engaged in a battle with the tech giant over being left out of pocket by Google for the content they produce, and while it now appears to be making concessions, there is a fear amongst some that email could be next to be targeted.

While it might take some time until Google can reach critical mass and the technology is streamlined across other providers, brands should be aware of what AMP for email means and the fundamental way it could change the nature of email and its value as a marketing channel.

Brands that are big or innovative enough to justify experimentation might want to sign up for the Gmail Developer Preview in order to start playing around with it. For others, a wait and see approach may be more appropriate. But judging by the fast adoption of AMP for websites, AMP for email is likely to become a reality, so no marketer that engages in email marketing can afford not to be aware of what’s coming down the pipe.

This article was originally published on Mumbrella: How does… Google’s AMP for email work?