What Is a Featured Snippet?
Search engines never stop evolving. The minute you think you have beaten the system, the system changes. That's why it's so important to understand even the smallest changes and what they may mean for your tactics moving forward. You simply cannot afford to get complacent. It never pays off, least of all in the world of SEO.
One of the major changes to how users experience Google search results in recent years is the addition of a "featured snippet." Do you know what a featured snippet is, how it works and why you need to leverage it for your own success?
How It Works
The featured snippet is Google's response to the fact that a lot of users are simply asking questions. They want to learn something specific. They want that answer as quickly as possible.
In the past, search engine results would simply take them to a page where they could find that answer. They'd have to navigate through the actual details on their own.
Technically, that worked. But it wasn't always fast. Someone who wants to know what time a movie is playing at the local theater does not want to scroll through all of the listings to find the right showtimes. They just want those showtimes on the screen.
With the featured snippet, Google pulls out the exact information they want and puts it at the top of the page. It sits above all of those other search results. That's what makes it so valuable. If Google chooses the information from your site, you get to jump the line. Your information soars to the top and many users will look at it without ever consulting the other links.
This makes your site appear to be the ultimate authority on the subject. Out of all of the sites on the web, Google decided to use yours to answer the question. It also increases traffic, as users can click on the link to get more detailed information.
A Focus on Voice
One benefit of the featured snippet system is that it works well with voice searches. On a keyboard, people tend to type keywords. When they run a voice search, they tend to use complete sentences. It's the difference between a search string like "change oil 2013 Jeep Wrangler" and "How do you change the oil on a 2013 Jeep Wrangler?" Voice searches are longer and more complex, but they work perfectly with snippets and clear answers to these questions.
How Do You Get One?
Getting a featured snippet starts by offering readers the information they really want. Make that information concise. Make it easy to understand. Provide direct answers to their questions. Remember that the snippet does not have to be one line or paragraph. It can be a bulleted list. The more user-friendly information you provide that actually offers value, the better your chances of getting featured. Remember, the focus is on questions, so you need to know what people are asking and how to give them those direct answers.
That's where we come in. We can help you create the perfect content for your site. We understand how SEO is evolving. Let us guide you through this process so that you can stay on the cutting edge.