What Are Featured Snippets & Why Do We Want Them?

Digital Marketing

19 Oct 2021

6 min read

If you’ve ever performed a Google Search (who hasn’t?), you’re more than likely to have seen a featured snippet. Still confused? This article will explain what a featured snippet is, why they are important for SEO purposes and how you can increase your chances of scoring one.

Do you want to know how you can improve your Click Through Rate and see your organic traffic skyrocket? Read on!

What are Google’s featured snippets?

Featured snippets are short, concise pieces of text that appear on the very top of Google’s search results. Often referred to as ‘Position #0’, their primary purpose is to quickly and easily answer searchers’ queries. Examples of featured snippets can include; lists, videos, tables and more.

Approximately 41% of questions have featured snippets on Google. While that might not sound like a particularly impressive statistic - take a moment to consider just how many questions exist in Google’s database. Right, that’s a lot of questions and a lot of featured snippets!

Do you want to see a featured snippet about featured snippets? See our example below.

What Are Featured Snippets & Why Do We Want Them

Why are featured snippets important?

Featured snippets are an important tool for both searchers and businesses or websites - and here’s why.

They make searchers’ lives that much easier, by providing them with exactly the information they need, in a summarised and easy to find format - meaning they don’t have to scour the web for lengthy periods of time to find what they are looking for.

As a business, featured snippets can be used as a great digital marketing tool and make up a very important part of SEO. Not only do featured snippets significantly improve Click Through Rate, but they also give websites without a high domain authority the opportunity to rank above the number one position in Google’s search results. In fact, Search Engine Land has reported that a featured snippet gets around 8.6% of all clicks. Pretty cool, huh?

Ultimately, landing a featured snippet can pave the way for a plethora of organic traffic to your website and allow you to outrank your competitors, without needing exceptional domain authority. To discover how you can station your web pages above your competitors and rank for Position #0, keep reading!

So how do you get featured snippets?

To increase your chances of landing a featured snippet, there are a few things you can do.
Firstly, look for featured snippet opportunities. Conduct keyword research to determine which SERPs already have one. While this can be done manually, it is likely to be very time consuming - so your best bet is to use a helpful online tool, such as SEMRush.

Make sure you are always aware of the questions your readers are likely to be asking. Is it a ‘why does’ or a ‘how to’? Once you get into the habit of knowing this information, it becomes a lot easier to customise your content to suit these questions and their formats.

Once you’ve decided on a featured snippet you want to target, optimise your on-page content. It’s important to optimise accordingly to the type of snippet you want. For example, if it is a list - ensure you structure it appropriately. This will boost your chances of landing that highly sought after position.

Featured snippets change sources quite regularly, so you’re not too late to land one! If you want to learn some insider tips on how you can write for snippets... keep reading.

Tips on writing for a featured snippet

We are not all copywriting, SEO experts - we get it! That’s why we have compiled a list of writing tips and tricks for you to use next time you’re chasing after Position #0.

  • Use Effective Headings Make sure to organise your content with headers and subheadings (H1s, H2s and H3s). Breaking up each section of text not only makes it easier for users to read, but it will also increase your chance of success.
  • Write Clear & Concise Content Don’t beat around the bush. Users often want a specific answer - so be sure to give the people what they want! Giving direct information in an easy to read format is key here, so make sure to keep it snappy. It’s recommended you keep each section of content between 40 - 50 words.
  • Get Visual Include high quality media, such as photos or videos on your web page to make your content more appealing. More than one third of featured snippets include an image. Or, if you’re going to upload a video, you can include a transcript for some extra SEO brownie points.
  • Make Use of FAQs Do you have dedicated FAQ content on your website? If not, it might be a good idea to add some! Google loves question and answer formats. Think about it - FAQs address a range of questions that users are likely to be asking, sometimes in almost the exact same wording that they would type into their search bar. Because of this, FAQs are likely to boost your chances of scoring a featured snippet - so make sure you use them when possible!
  • Always Add Structured Data Tell the ‘GoogleBots’ exactly what your page is about. Adding this special coding to your web page can help you land that top position. However, be careful not to add this to every page - it should only be used when it offers users value.
  • Answer Multiple Questions Did you know that once a page has secured one featured snippet, it is more likely to land snippets for other queries too? That’s why we suggest addressing a range of related questions on the one page - much like this article does!

Tools our SEO experts love

Are you still stuck? Luckily, there are a bunch of online tools that can help you, whether it be for keyword research or otherwise. We’ve noted some of our favourites…

Now that you know what a featured snippet is and how you can improve your chances of securing one, it’s time to get started on your SEO journey. Still have more questions? The experts at Salt & Fuessel can help! Get in touch today.

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