Google is churning out updates to its WordPress products ahead of WordCamp Europe in Berlin this weekend, with the AMP Plugin 1.2 release and Site Kit’s developer beta launch landing the same day.
Site Kit is a new addition to Google’s WordPress plugin lineup that was announced at WordCamp US 2018. It provides a dashboard that displays how well a site is doing with various Google tools, such as Search Console, Analytics, AdSense, and PageSpeed Insights, packaged as a one-stop solution.
The developer preview announced today includes the following features:
- Seamless site verification with Search Console
- Provisioning and configuration of Analytics, AdSense, Tag Manager and Optimize
- Simple aggregate and per-page reporting from Search Console, Analytics, and AdSense, to help you understand the full acquisition and monetization funnel
- Continuous site performance auditing and monitoring with PageSpeed Insights
- Insights we derive from across the products you’ve connected and surface on your dashboard, to help you make sense of the stats
Site Kit will give WordPress users access to information and stats from Google tools directly inside the dashboard. Instead of having to log into multiple Google services to hunt down site performance and page traffic information, this plugin aggregates the most data and puts it at your fingertips inside the WordPress admin where it is most relevant.
The Site Kit plugin is still under active development on GitHub and beta testers will need to be familiar with the Google Cloud Platform and OAuth in order to get started.
The setup experience is not user-friendly but rather geared towards getting feedback on the plugin’s current features. Google isn’t planning on putting Site Kit on WordPress.org until the setup process has been improved to be a better experience for WordPress users who are not developers. The goals for the developer beta are to gather feedback on the plugin’s functionality and compatibility with other plugins.
A contingency of engineers from Google’s Developer Programs team will be available at the Google booth during WordCamp Europe to answer questions from the community on Site Kit and any of the company’s other products.
Looks colorful and flashy and says “Google” on it, so I’m sure it will receive thousands of installs very quickly. However it’s clear this thing will be a beast in terms of API calls and code bloat…
Plus, I’m assuming it will force load most of these scripts in the header rather than the footer. And now thousands more webmasters will be installing both Tag Manager and also GA and others, meaning a potential mess of duplicate scripts.
It was nice to see the new Google GSC console finally begin encouraging verification by DNS records instead of janky HTML files and snippets, but this looks like 2 steps backward.
Ultimately I’m guessing this will hurt WordPress performance and stability more than it helps. And look how poorly other Big Tech corporations took care of their “official” WordPress plugins, such as Facebook, Google AMP, CloudFlare, SendGrid, etc…