The goal of any legitimate SEO strategy is to funnel more traffic to your website. But instead of seeking to rank high on the first page of Google Search’s results (which is important in its own right), today I’m going to go over 5 tips for landing features snippets on Google Search.
A featured snippet is that first box that pops up in a Google Search just above the ranked results. It provides information or answers a question that users commonly ask. This answer could be a picture, video, list, or text explanation that is relevant to a question or topic that the user has typed into the Google Search bar. Essentially, Google searches for the best, most relevant answer and places it in this coveted spot. Technically, if you land a featured snippet, you’re in position 0 because it pops up ahead of position 1, which is the top of the ranked results. What a place to be!
Is It Really Possible To Get Featured?
Even though there’s no guarantee that your page will be used for a featured snippet, there are some specific steps you can take to optimize your pages and increase your chances. And there’s even better news. It doesn’t matter if your business is big or small, new or established… anyone can land a featured snippet with a little bit of focused work.
Tips for Landing a Featured Snippet
#1 Review Your Website Content
Take a look at your website content with an eye for how you may or may not be helping visitors when they peruse your pages. Do you provide answers to commonly-asked questions? Do you have detailed content that informs readers instead of just persuading them to buy? If you do, then you’ve got a good foundation to start with. If not, then Tip #2 becomes even more critical.
#2 Make a List of Questions to Answer
No matter what your website content looks like currently, this tip is critical to increasing your chances of landing a featured snippet. Spend some time in the shoes of your potential customers. What kinds of questions do they need answers to? What advice can you provide? What how-tos or steps or definitions can you offer? Come up with as many questions as you possibly can (the more specific, the better), and move on to Tip #3.
#3 Answer Them Clearly and Concisely
Now that you’ve got your list of questions, look at your existing content and polish it up so that it answers them clearly and concisely. Or, if you don’t have content that answers these questions, it’s time to start writing. For example, if you own a pest control company, create a blog post that answers one of your questions, like “How can I tell if I have bed bugs?” or “Why do I have cobwebs in my basement?” Providing a short, specific response to these types of questions increases your chances of getting featured.
#4 Say It Better And Say It With Keywords
Make sure you incorporate relevant and competitive keywords into the text that you’d like to have featured. Take a look at what your competitors are saying and create a better, more specific snippet. Make every word count. In other words, no generalities or meaningless words like “good,” “great,” or “better.” Another quick tip: use Heading 2 and 3 tags. This small addition helps Google identify relevant information within your broader content.
#5 Create Summaries or Lists
Summarize longer content into a short paragraph, bulleted list, or steps and place this summary at the top of your content. For example, if you’ve got a lengthy how-to on how to remove wine from the carpet, then consolidate the steps (1 sentence each) at the top of your article to increase your chances of getting a featured snippet (and make sure you use Heading 2 or 3 for each step). Then, when the reader wants to learn more, he or she will click on the link to your full article.
When Will My Snippet Get Featured?
As I said above, there’s no guarantee that your content will be featured in a snippet; however, the tips above will get you closer than you are today, and it’s definitely worth the effort. If after some time, you find that your content isn’t working, don’t be afraid to change it up. If you’re answering the right questions, your likelihood of snagging a featured snippet will increase, so it’s all about getting into your potential customers’ shoes.