3 Ways Featured Snippets Help Boost Your SEO
Insight | May 5, 2020
Google is always optimizing how its search engine functions.
It’s always refining its algorithm to improve user experience – ensuring people get high-quality, non-spammed content for their queries.
Search results on Google have now gone beyond plain links. Featured snippets have become quite popular and almost the norm. They’re often the first, instant answer you see to your query on a Google results page.
A study by Ahrefs says that “12.29% of search queries have featured snippets” displayed in their search results.
They occupy a lot of space on a page displaying search results. They work because they “give marketers a chance to beat competitors, boost conversions, and drive traffic right to their site,” Neil Patel points out.
What Are Featured Snippets?
Featured Snippets are brief, concise, and direct answers to people’s queries that appear in a box at the top of a Google search results page. Above all the other results, the box includes:
1.Summaries of answers (usually with an image)
2.The page title
3.The page link or URL
The answers are pulled out from a webpage that usually ranks at the top of the search results page to a particular question.
Featured snippets work because they give clear answers that are swift and easy to understand to users.
People don’t have to click on a link all the time to get answers to their questions. With featured snippets, they get instantaneous access to what they’re looking for.
Featured snippets usually come in the following formats:
…and more. They could even be videos.
How Featured Snippets Help Boost SEO
These instantly available answers to people’s search queries are a surefire way of achieving positive results for your online presence.
Here are three fundamental ways featured snippets help boost SEO.
1.Featured snippets help increase your visibility twofold and drive a substantial amount of traffic to your website
Featured snippets work wonders for your online visibility!
They get you a position that’s above all other rankings. Even the first one!
This is what Neil Patel calls “Position Zero”. Because these aren’t simply the first thing you see on a search results page.
For example, if you search “How to lose weight,” Google will display a featured snippet that has an answer to your query above all the other links on the search engine results page (SERP). Even above the first result!
Optimizing your content for featured snippets is thus, quite helpful for SEO because they pop at the top of a SERP above all results, giving users the first glimpse of what they’re looking for.
This glimpse works because,
It’s easy and convenient to read.
It has high informational quality.
Its form is as convenient to consume as its position.
After all, short paragraphs, bulleted points or tables are always easier to read and understand than other forms of content.
If your content is designed that way, your original SERP position will cease to matter.
Because your brand gets to be seen in two positions – the zero position and your actual SERP position, featured snippets help increase its visibility.
Your brand gets to have a twofold exposure!
This, in turn, helps drive a considerable amount of organic traffic to your website. And boost your brand’s reach.
2. Featured snippets help you beat your competitors by stealing clicks from them even if you don’t rank on page one
Although the content present in featured snippets is mostly drawn from sites in the top 10 SERPs, this doesn’t spell doom for sites that don’t rank high.
Did you know? 70% of snippets come from sites that don’t have the “first organic position,” according to Gestat.
You don’t necessarily have to be a site with a high authority domain. When it comes to featured snippets, Google doesn’t seem to favor such sites all the time.
All you need is a quality answer to a relevant question. A question your audience is asking. A question that’s popular amongst your audience.
Answer that question via a featured snippet and track results to see what difference that makes.
On an average, says Ahrefs, 8.6% of all clicks go to the featured snippet. This means that your chances of getting a high CTR are diminished if there’s a featured snippet above your content.
It doesn’t matter if you hold the number one position on a SERP. Featured Snippets steal clicks from the results that are shown beneath them.
Remember they occupy what Neil Patel calls the “zero position.”
3. Featured snippets boost your brand’s credibility and trust
If Google trusts your brand and content enough to display it above all the top-ranking pages, it means something.
It tells users that your answer to that particular query is the best possible one. Even if your original SERP position isn’t as high, getting a featured snippet helps users trust your brand.
Anyone building an online presence knows how crucial credibility is to users. And nothing adds to your credibility like Google showing your website above all others to users for a query in question.
And what does more credibility get you?
It helps increase your CTR and direct enormous organic traffic directly to your brand.
Featured snippets are one of the excellent ways to not get stuck in the lower levels of SERPs.
If you know how to create quality content to a relevant question, in a format that appeals to Google, you’d have more chances of earning a featured snippet.
Featured snippets help drive organic traffic by improving your visibility across SERPs.
They help you rank higher by stealing clicks away from your competition.
They enhance your credibility by establishing brand trust.