Correlating Lighthouse scores to page-level CrUX data - Analysis - HTTP Archive

Surprisingly, the correlations for each CWV are weak to medium strength and for FID it’s actually a negative correlation, meaning that as the Lighthouse score goes up, real-user FID performance actually tends to go down a bit.

This is the kind of analysis I was hoping to see after Pat added CrUX data to WebPageTest.

Most of this lines up with what I’d expect. Cumulative Layout Shift is measured very differently synthetically versus in the CrUX data (particularly before the new windowing approach) and First Input Delay has always seemed to have a very weak connection to Total Blocking Time in my experience. (First Input Delay itself has plenty of limitations, and I’m eager to see it supplanted by something a bit more useful in the future.)

I think many of us have cautioned against leaning too hard on optimizing for your Lighthouse scores, and it’s nice to evidence as to why. Lighthouse is a great tool, but it works better as a “here’s a list of things you can try to improve” than it does as a goal in and of itself.