Getting answers as a web user is becoming quicker and more convenient. Google moves fast to cater for those quick searches we make whether at home, work or a common pub debate. Your business also needs to be quick on its feet to capture more traffic available with featured snippets.
You’ve seen it by now, your searches that contain easily parse-able facts and factoids will be presented directly within the search results. As users we don’t need to remember facts anymore and as such we are always pestering the search engine for these ‘informational searches’. A study by Ahrefs suggests that searches of this nature (and are served featured snippets) account for 12.3% of all searches.
A simple way to understand the advantages of appearing in Google’s featured snippet searches is that greater exposure means greater traffic, authority, trust-building and eventually customers. You won’t turn every visitor into a sale but it certainly will increase your chances, all for very little work.
It can be hard at times to even fathom the number of queries that users will have around your product or service industry so it’s worthwhile to understand the breadth of this featured snippet in structure and opportunities for your specific market.
There are about 5 featured snippets which fit in to a few categories. Which is a key indicator about how you can generate your content around your products and services.
As always it starts with research and informs everything else. So here we go…
1. Identify the questions
Knowing what questions are related to your market are as simple as using this wonderfully helpful tool, SEO Review Tools’ Featured Snippet Tool which uses search data to help you identify the range of questions (from the How What When Are Can Where Which Who Why Will range), as well as geographic data. Be sure to search from the simple keyword level and the way to more generic terminology. For example, search from specific product, to product category to industry and its surrounds. You will be finding some content gems.
2. Research the search volume
What comes back can be surprisingly comprehensive. The next step is to isolate the relevant keywords and perform search volume analysis. There might be so many questions that you would prefer to focus on the higher searched queries as opposed to the least queried questions. You can do this via the Google Keyword Planner or via the SEO Review Tool itself.
The above is a representation of the search volume from the keyword planner volumes and will be dependent upon your region and granularity of your research in Step 1.
3. Generate the content
Now that you have your range of questions with substantial search volume, you can let your expertise shine. The more succinct and comprehensive you are will help your chances of being featured. Be sure to align the post to the format of the featured snippet types (as previously mentioned above) and adhere to all of the regular best practices such as structured markup data, clean HTML and optimising images. You may not immediately appear as the number 1 featured snippet but if your answers are good, it will find the way to the topc
4. Update sitemap and submit/resubmit the URL to Google
Don’t do all of this work without telling the world. Be sure to have it included in the Sitemap and manually submit these links for crawling within Google Search Console.
Okay, maybe after a month or so has gone by, you’ll want to measure how successful your hard work has been. Thankfully, SEO tools are very helpful at measuring your successes. Both SEMRush and Ahrefs have tools to assist. However, there are two manual options:
Manually check SERP in incognito mode
Track rankings for target keyword and Search Console data
Time is critical here but these paid tools (mentioned above) allow you to simply narrow down your rankings for the featured snippet feature as well as additional discovery options to generate more. You will be able to also perform competition research this way to determine how well your competitors are also engaging with the featured snippet feature.
And there you have it. A succinct process to achieve featured snippet traffic, authority and methods to advanced your in-house SEO tactics.