Featured Snippets

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What Is A Featured Snippet?

A featured snippet is an excerpt from a web page that is displayed at the top of the Google search results. Featured snippets are usually seen when the search query takes the form of a question. They provide an answer to the search term without the user needing to click on any of the search results.

Featured snippets are often referred to as ‘Position Zero’ because they usually appear above the organic search results.

Featured snippets can appear in different formats. The most common are definitions, tables, numbered steps, and lists. Definition snippets are short paragraphs. Tables usually display numerical data. Numbered lists are often seen when searching for top 10s or instructions. Unordered lists show bullet points in no particular order.

A definition featured snippet for the search term 'What is a Featured Snippet?'

According to Ahrefs, featured snippets get fewer clicks than the number one result on searches without a snippet. On a search without a snippet, the top result receives on average 26% of clicks. On a search with a snippet, the featured snippet receives 8.6% of clicks and the first result receives 19.6% of clicks.

Additionally, featured snippets increase the number of no-click searches. A no-click search is when the user leaves the results page without having clicked on any of the results. This is most likely because the user’s question was answered by the snippet, so they didn’t need to click on any of the other results.

This doesn’t necessarily mean you should avoid targeting keywords with a featured snippet. Instead, you should consider whether you can create content which could be used as a featured snippet itself.

How Do You Get A Featured Snippet?

There is no guaranteed way to get featured snippets. There are, however, ways to increase your chances.

Firstly, you should identify keywords in your industry which already have featured snippets. If a search term already has a featured snippet, then you can target it and try to steal it. Featured snippets are most commonly found when searching for a long-tail keyword.

Once you have identified some keywords to target, you need to create content which is appropriate for featured snippets. Google will look for content which is already in the correct format to be featured.

For definition snippets, write a short paragraph which succinctly answers the query. According to research by SEMrush, the average length of a definition snippet is 40-60 words. In order to make it clear to Google, you could consider putting a subheading which matches the keyword above the paragraph.

You should steer clear of any opinions and stick to the facts. Google prefers to feature snippets which provide factual information only.

This may sound obvious, but for a table snippet, you should create a table containing the relevant information. Google favours taking already existing tables to feature, rather than pulling together the information from a webpage themselves.

For numbered lists, make sure your formatting is consistent. For example, stick with ‘Step 1, Step 2, etc.’ or ‘1., 2., etc.’. Don’t switch between the two. Also consider making each step a h2 or h3 tag.

Google also likes content which is up-to-date so make sure to regularly review your content and ensure that it is still relevant.

The most important thing you can do is to work on your page’s overall SEO. According to the previously mentioned study by Ahrefs, 99.58% of featured snippets come from pages which were already ranking on page 1. Focus on moving your page up the rankings before getting too caught up in featured snippets.

Have you ever tried to get a featured snippet? Let me know what worked for you (and what didn’t).

If you don’t know where to start when it comes to SEO or you’d like some help improving your rankings, then get in touch with us at chat@pretzelled.co.uk to find out how we could help you.

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