What is “First Meaningful Paint”

“Paint” relates to the time when web page content is shown on the user’s computer by the browser. By labeling it with “first meaningful paint,” the phrase indicates that showing anything on the screen is good, but it’s not the story’s ending.

For example, if a person is on a news website, then it doesn’t matter if the masthead is the first thing to display. From the user viewpoint, the first meaningful paint is the paint in which the news headline/article/image shows on the display.

“First Meaningful Paint is the time it needs for the primary content of a website to show up on the screen, according to Google. Mostly used as a primary metric for viewer-perceived loading experience, these primary content meanings vary depending on the pages.”

When the primary content is visible on the screen, this particular time refers to the first meaningful paint.  

What First Meaningful Paint actually measures? 

  • FMP monitors when the user is conscious of the primary content of a website. The actual FMP score is the time in seconds between person authorizing the page load and the server making the primary above the fold content.
  • FMP displays basically the phase of the paint in which the biggest over-the-fold shift in style occurs. Learn more about FMP’s technical specifics in Google’s First Meaningful Paint Time: A layout-based approach.
  • First Contentful Paint (FCP) and FMP are quite often the same, as the content above the fold is used in the initial bit of content made on the screen. These metrics, however, will vary when there is content above the fold within an iframe, for example.
  • FMP identifies when the content is available to the user within the iframe, while FCP does not involve iframe content.

How to determine the FMP score?

When you first came across this model one instant task was to calculate a metric such as “first meaningful paint.” If you are aware of Google Pagespeed Insights, you know that you can get recommendations such as “Eliminate render-blocking of JavaScript and CSS in above the fold content.” But it doesn’t really tell you how easily a user starts appearing on your website.

Another choice is to set up a GTmetrix account and use their Video features. Once you pass the test, a video will display you how your page looks and give you time indicators for many valuable page speed measurements.

Lighthouse is a tool that assesses your website and its metrics. It will give you a hint of what you have done correctly and what you have done wrong so that you can have an opportunity to boost the efficiency and loading time of your websites.

Important Facts

  • The lower the score of your First Meaningful Paint, the sooner the page appears to show its key content.
  • Optimizing the Critical Rendering Path is especially helpful in getting a speedy First Meaningful Paint.

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