Featured snippets have been a part of Google’s algorithm for over four years now, and the benefits of getting your content featured are widely known. Becoming the featured snippet for a select search result puts your site at the forefront of a particular conversation. Essentially, your content becomes the first available option on the page detailing that particular topic.
There are worthwhile benefits to getting a featured snippet, and thus this should be the aim of every SEO professional. If you’re unsure about how to go about getting featured snippets, look no further! Our “How to Get Featured Snippets” guide down below will have you on your way to the top in no time.
What are Google Featured Snippets?
Google’s Featured Snippet is the first result shown when a person searches for a question-based query. The featured snippet uses some of the information available on one of the sites included on the first page. People can read the information without actually having to visit the first page.
The aim of featured snippets is to answer a person’s query quickly and efficiently. Naturally, sites with featured snippets tend to get more exposure than those sitting plainly on the first page. (Do note though that more than 99% of featured snippets come from the results included on the first page.)
Why are Featured Snippets Important?
The short answer to this question is that it improves CTR. As previously stated, sites with featured snippets get more exposure than those without. People trust Google’s algorithm to be smart enough to provide an effective answer to their question and thus do tend to click on snippets.
While measured improvement statistics are really dependent on the keyword or question being asked, several studies have noted that getting your content featured in the snippet will increase traffic.
Some studies performed by searchengineland.com and other notable SEO experts have noted that pages with a featured snippet get as much as 2x more traffic than others that appear on the first page. With these types of benefits, every SEO professional should be writing with the aim of getting featured snippets.
Types of Featured Snippets
There are three different types of featured snippets (scroll up to see a featured snippet example):
- Paragraph – the answer is provided in a long-form text format.
- List – the search query generates a list for an answer.
- Table – the answer is provided in the form of a table instead of text or a list.
How to Rank for Featured Snippets
If you follow our featured snippets tips detailed below when designing your site’s content, you stand a good chance of getting those ever-elusive “answer boxes”.
1. Identify Commonly Asked Questions and Good Focus Keywords
The first step of getting Google featured snippets is learning which questions your market is asking, how they ask it (for example, how vs why) and the keywords that trigger the appearance of these “answer boxes.”
Many studies suggest that long-tail keywords trigger featured snippets, so you should begin your search by looking at those. Also, in keeping up with the idea that snippets mainly come from search results featured on the first page, focus on your high ranking keywords.
Other than Google searching each individual keyword to find out whether or not it generates a featured snippet, several tools can be used to make your life easier. Some such tools include the following:
- Semrush (https://www.semrush.com/) and Ahrefs (https://ahrefs.com/) both offer features which allow users the chance to see keywords their own sites, as well as competitors, have featured snippets for. (Bear in mind, that the Semrush Featured Snippet tool sometimes takes time to update.)
- When you find a featured snippet, you will notice that Google also offers a load of other related questions people are asking. You can aim at answering those too.
- AnswerThePublic (https://answerthepublic.com/) provides a list of commonly asked questions related to a particular keyword.
During your research, also pay close attention to how your competitors are currently holding the featured snippet answer the question. You may want to structure your question in this manner.
2. Answer The Question
It should be your aim to answer the previously identified question as directly as possible. While this is not an exact science (as with anything in SEO), it has been suggested that Google will be more likely to feature your answer as a snippet if you do the following:
- Answer the question underneath a heading (h2, h3). This means that your heading should be the question or feature the keyword that generates the snippet.
- Make sure you organise your content in an efficient manner. For example, if a featured snippet making use of your competitor’s content included a list, you should also make use of a list. Google likes answering questions and is thus more likely to suggest pages the algorithm feels is efficient in doing this.
- If it is a text-based question, use shorter paragraphs to answer the question. Ideally, the answer should be between 40 and 50 words, and it should always include the keyword.
3. Include Multiple Related Questions on the Same Page
Answering multiple high search volume questions on a single page increases the potential of your content being made a featured snippet for several different questions. Google is more likely to use a page for a featured snippet if it already has a featured snippet.
4. Track Your Targeted Featured Snippet Keywords
After you have made changes to your content, you need to track your targeted featured snippet keywords. Some readers may be wondering how to track featured snippets, but this can be done by using the tools mentioned above. Alternatively, you can also manually check targetedwords by entering them into the search bar after you’re sure your changes have been indexed.
Rounding Off on Google Featured Snippets
It takes time to create good featured snippet content but there are so many benefits to be gained. Not only do you stand a chance of increasing your site’s traffic, but you also put yourself in a position to learn about new ways of creating and engaging with content.
Did you find our featured snippet guide helpful? Have you got any tips for getting featured snippets? Please share your experience in the comments down below.
TL:DR? Download our quick to read presentation here: How To Get Featured Snippets