Quickly. One-click away. To the point. When looking for any information over the internet, isn’t this how we want it? Google knows this too and keeps updating how results appear on the search page. Considering users’ convenience in mind, Google added the Featured Snippet feature on the search results page. The Snippet also features a URL for those looking for complete details.
SEO specialists are constantly trying to get their content to the first spot in Google’s organic search. The great news is – Featured Snippets are your shortcut that takes you to the top in a Google search. Fortunately, you aren’t needed to make many updates in your content to make it to the Featured Snippet; some customization will do the trick for you.
Featured Snippet is a relatively recent introduction on the search engine results page (SERP). A recent but radical change in terms of how results are displayed on the search page. When you use Google search, the first thing you see in the results would be sponsored items, the next item you see would be Featured Snippets, and finally, you would see the regular website links.
Meaning, no matter how SEO optimized your content is, it is bound to appear after sponsored results and Featured Snippets.But what if there are no sponsored items for a search? Bingo! The Featured Snippets lead to the top of the results. And that’s precisely why the Featured Snippets hold great importance for content marketers.
Before we go ahead and discuss how to make it to the Featured Snippet, you need to know the different types of snippets and which one appears in the search depending on the type of query.
Paragraph snippets are the most common snippets in the SERP. Out of all the types of snippets that appear, around 50% are paragraph snippets as per Moz. In this Snippet, the answer is provided in text inside a box. At times, you will also see an image in the box and the text.
This is how it may look like:
List type snippets provide the answer in a list – numbered or bulleted, for how-to or process-driven queries. This is the second most common featured snippet type.
Here is an example:
Likewise, a table snippet presents the answer in tabular form. This one gets a preference when more than one type of data has to be included in the answer.
This is how it looks like:
Through video snippets, the result is provided in a visual format embedded on the page. Irrespective of whether the user has mentioned ‘video’ in the query or not, the SERP lets them know the availability of a video answering their query.
Rich answers are short and direct answers to the question, which appear bold. The complete Snippet will still have supplementary information and a URL.
Below is a snap of rich answer:
Featured snippets are an opportunity to get higher organic traffic. Since they appear at the top of SERP and directly answer the user’s query, the user is less likely to scroll down further and visit some other web page. Instead, the users generally click on the URL that appears with the Featured Snippet for reading further.
Getting featured is known to have increased brand awareness, traffic, and sales. Your content could get featured and surface on the top even if your website did not appear on page one of the search results. Google featured snippets look attractive to the users as they stand out on the SERP.
It’s necessary to optimize your content to get featured, and there are numerous ways to do so. When we say numerous ways, we mean there is no perfect list of optimizations that you can do and make it to the snippets. However, the list we have curated will undoubtedly add to your chances of getting featured.
Out of all the different types of searches performed, the question-type queries get the highest percentage of featured snippets. That said, either you can try and answer more and more questions, or you can adopt a definition type approach for queries that aren’t a question. This means writing your content like writing a definition so Google can consider it an answer, which might as well get featured.
To get featured, you need to understand what people are searching for. Thinking from a searcher’s point of view will help you identify what exact questions they can put in the search. Also, you can put a question in the Google search related to your content and analyze the Snippet that manifests to get an idea of the content. Similarly, you can skim through the ‘People also ask’ section for insights around what else is being asked related to your content.
Keyword search tools let you discover if a search query gets featured snippets or not. You will also get to know what type of snippets appear under a search. Now, all you need to do is optimize your content according to the insights gathered – answer those questions asked and include tags related to them.
Remember to answer more than one question in your content as if you’re featured for a query; you’ll likely be featured again for a similar query that can be answered from the same article.
According to research from SEMrush, the probability of a content getting featured is the highest when its word count is between 40 to 50 words. When you follow this word count, relevance and completeness mustn’t be compromised – try to be crisp and cover the necessary details.
Who doesn’t like step-by-step guidelines? We all do; even Google isn’t an exception. Whenever you can, ensure answering the queries in the form of steps. Make sure you structure the steps in the form of a numbered list so that it is easy for Google to identify the same.
It’s been observed that following the above practices can get you featured, irrespective of whether your website finds a place in the organic top-ranking or not. Getting featured means you get to the top of the SERP without any need for advertising. So why delay? Audit your keywords, make them question-based, follow the definition approach, and include steps – your content may soon appear in a box at the top.
Need expert assistance on the same or stuck somewhere in the process? Leverage the experience of Granth; contact us for content optimization or get it written from scratch while you target Featured Snippets. What’s more? We have many more services to offer in our Brand Bucket, which you might require.