How To Get Featured Snippets On Google

How To Get Featured Snippets On Google

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See below, the transcript from this episode of Giant Wednesday if videos aren’t your preferred method to consume digital skills. See also the Giant Cheat Sheet from this episode.

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Google knows us. It knows how lazy we are, and how we like to cut corners, and because of this, it’s introduced a much faster and easier way of getting us the answers to our questions.

These delightful little boxes, designed to give you the information you need without ever having to leave the SERPS, are called Featured Snippets.

But wait – us marketers want that website traffic! We need that traffic?!

Fear not. I’m Liz, and if you want the down low on featured snippets on Google Search Results, then stick around.

So first up…

 

What is a featured snippet?

Well, a featured snippet is a brief morsel of information from a webpage that appears at the top of the search engine results page, offering a super quick answer to a searcher’s query.

These are pulled from pages that have been indexed by Google, and most commonly appear in the form of a definition, list, how-to steps, or tables.

As a user, they’re really handy and can help you get around things like slow loading web pages, or having to rifle through a mass of information to find that one bit you need.

But wait…

 

Do featured snippets affect my site’s SEO negatively?

Don’t you worry – you aren’t the only one who’s pondered this question.

If a user is getting the answer they need without visiting the webpage directly, we’re right to worry about a drop in sessions – and therefore, an effect on other metrics.

However, a study by Hubspot actually found it dramatically increased the click-through rate of results ranking within it.

Ultimately, being featured shows you’re already doing the right things with your SEO. Good job,

If you start to appear as the answer in a featured snippet then you might see a slight drop in sessions, but if you’re smart, you might drive even more clicks than normal.

 

What happens when a user clicks a featured snippet?

When someone clicks to read more on a featured snippet, it will take them directly to the part of the page that delivered the answer they needed. 

This gives you a great opportunity to add more context on the topic or to further direct that user through your content and website – knowing that they’re already interested.

Convinced? Well, then the next step is to cover off…

 

How to get a featured snippet

 

1. Provide answers to FAQs

As with many aspects of digital marketing, your job is to provide easy to access answers to peoples questions and desires online.

Quite simply, you want to provide answers to frequently asked questions that relate to what you do.

This bit involves a bit of research – you could think about the FAQs you get from potential customers, or even look at tools like Answer The Public to see what people are searching for relating to your business.

Make a list of these questions and answer them as best you can, finding relevant places on your website to host them – considering that the user might click through to find out more!

 

2. Structure your content

Now that you’ve got the questions and answers you want to target getting Featured Snippets for, you need to get these on your website.

Clear page structures are important – as with almost all parts of search engine optimisation.

Aim for the search query you’re answering to appear in a header, such as H2, H3 or H4.

Then include your answer, the content you want to appear in the Featured Snippet, in a paragraph below under a <p> tag.

 

3. Consider your answer format 


When writing out your answer or definition to the query you’re looking to rank for, consider what format would be best for delivering the information.

As I said before, featured snippets often appear as definitions, tables or step by steps.

If you’re going for a sentence or paragraph style answer, then it’s been found that content that’s between 54-58 words tends to perform best. We don’t recommend going any higher than that.

If you’re looking at step by step and lists, then the page structure is very important here.

Rather than listing out the detail in each step, like I’m doing now, the featured snippet will feature the headings of the 1, 2, 3, 4 etc.

To give your lists a helping hand into the land of featured snippets, make sure the summarised step is an H3 tag.

 

It really is as simple as that!

You can use the likes of schema markup to help point search engines in the right direction, but it’s not necessary in order to appear for featured snippets.

What is necessary is providing perfect, optimised solutions to users queries in a succinct way, so that even Google thinks damn – these guys are good. 

Consider the customer journey at all times:

What’s going to make them click through the featured snippet to your site?

What else might they want to see if they do click through?

 

How do you see if you have featured snippets?

There are lots of tools out there that can help you work out if you’ve won yourself a featured snippet.

We recommend SEMRush, which can even help you find opportunities to kick-start your featured snippet journey.

So! That was a look at what featured snippets are, their impact on your SEO, and how you can try to nab one for yourself.

If you have any questions, get in touch.

 

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