Catching More Featured Snippets With These 3 Simple Tips
Contrary to what other people may think, getting a featured snippet is just 10% luck and 90% strategy. An expert SEO agency applies many optimization and content marketing techniques to achieve successful strategies.
This article shares three:
- Study the “anatomy” of a featured snippet.
- Optimize well-performing content.
- Beat the existing featured snippet.
Read the article below to learn how to implement these tips. Let’s go!
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Why Should You Optimize Your Content for Featured Snippets?
Before you discover how to improve your content for featured snippets, let us answer that lingering question: why should you do it?
Featured snippets (as opposed to rich snippets) are sometimes called "position zero" for a reason. They are the first ones you see in many search queries — well before the search results, videos, People May Ask Questions, and the knowledge panel.
Additionally, its location significantly impacts conversions:
- You are likely to get a lot of clicks. In some studies, these snippets receive 8% of the total clicks. If a query triggers one, it can mean that the click-through rate (CTR) notably drops for the first link in the regular search results.
- It gives your traffic a boost. You can still place in the snippet box even if you rank below your competitors’ content. In a way, featured snippets support SEO by driving more visitors you would not otherwise get.
- Featured snippets showcase your expertise. The fact that Google shows your article as the best answer to the query suggests that you are knowledgeable about the topic. It is often enough to gain your audience’s trust and engagement.
In other words, the snippet box is a sweet spot for any business that wants to maximize its online exposure. But how do you gain it?
3 Tips to Boost Your Chances of Landing a Featured Snippet
Google uses special algorithms to determine which content should be a featured snippet. You cannot control or change it, but you can give yourself the best chance with these effective tips:
1. Study the “Anatomy” of a Featured Snippet
Not all search results trigger a featured snippet, and not all types of content become one. So what is it, really?
Snippets fall into four major types:
|Paragraph||Usually, short with fewer than five sentences, the answer to the query appears early in the paragraph.|
|List||Can be numbered or unnumbered (which may come from headings and subheadings of the article); commonly triggered by how-to (e.g., how to bake a cake) or informational queries (e.g., cake ingredients).|
|Video||Often, a clip from a YouTube video best answers a query.|
|Table||Table data is pulled from the article.|
- Featured snippets are not local map packs, which display three local businesses that match the user’s question. Information in these packs usually comes from Google Maps and Google My Business (GMB) profiles.
- They are also different from Google Images and Shopping Search.
- These snippets appear below PPC ads and above the Related Questions and People May Ask section.
So if you want a spot in the snippet box, consider adding any of these types of content to your website.
2. Optimize Well-Performing Content
Can you get a featured snippet even if you are not the first answer on search engine results pages (SERPs)? Yes, because Google is only concerned with providing the best answer to the question.
However, most of those who make it to this sought-after spot are high-ranking articles, almost always on the first page.
An SEO agency helps you rank well for your chosen keywords through a comprehensive content marketing plan. But what if you do not have to write an article from scratch?
If you already have well-performing content, you can repurpose or update it to make it more suitable for a featured snippet. The first step is to answer people’s questions.
You can do it by researching these places:
- Keyword planners or suggestion tools
- Competitor’s websites
- Google Trends
- People May Ask section
- Answer the Public
- Google’s autocomplete suggestions
- Related searches
Once you have ideas on the possible user queries that can trigger a featured snippet, remember these tips:
- Provide new information and present it in a table or list format. Get rid of the old ones as well.
- Choose keywords according to user intent. Add them to various parts of your article, especially the headings and subheadings.
- Include a short FAQ section.
- Keep your answers short. Place the keyword early in the paragraph, preferably in the first or second sentence.
- Make your article scannable. Use bullet points and numbers to break long texts.
3. Beat the Existing Featured Snippet
When you want to land a featured snippet, it pays to learn from your competitors, especially those that made it. Here is how to do it:
- Identify your main competitors ranking for the featured snippet you like. What type of snippet did they get?
- Analyze their content to see what they are doing well and where they fall short. Are the articles missing a clear introduction and conclusion? Have they missed new information? Do they fail to cite authoritative sources?
- Assess their on-page SEO factors, such as headings, meta tags, and content structure.
- Check their backlink profile to see which sites link to their content.
- Use the insights gained from your analysis to create a more comprehensive article that provides a better answer to the same question.
Are featured snippets hard to get? Yes, considering the millions of articles that can potentially answer a query. The good news is that getting there is not impossible with the right strategies.
You can target featured snippets through keyword research and content optimization. You can beat your competitors by examining their strengths and weaknesses. Most importantly, provide the best possible answers by concisely including all important information.
But if you want the best chance, work with an expert SEO agency. Digital Authority Partners (DAP) can create a comprehensive content marketing plan to get you into the coveted "featured snippet" box. Contact us today, and let us help you get there.
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