How to create content that will appear in Google’s Featured Snippets
What are Featured Snippets?
Featured Snippets are a great way to improve traffic to your website. They’re selected by Google to appear in Google search results in a box below the ads and above the organic search results. The aim of Featured Snippets is to answer the user’s question straight away. Getting Google to pick your content for use in these boxes can massively boost your web traffic.
How are Featured Snippets chosen?
For Featured Snippets, Google usually selects pieces of relevant content from web pages that already rank on page one of the search results, although it does sometimes select from sites lower down. These snippets typically contain numbered lists, bullet points, a brief paragraph or a table that answers the searcher’s question. They’re a great tool because they give you a lot of space right at the top of the search results – for free!
How can I make sure my content gets used in Featured Snippets?
Here are 8 tips to help you boost your chances of getting your content used in Featured Snippets.
1. Make sure you already rank highly in Google search results. Research has found that 99.58% of pages used for Featured Snippets already rank in the top 10 search results on Google, so using SEO strategies to improve your ranking will make you much more likely to get your content picked for Featured Snippets. Check out this article for some great SEO tips.
2. Make use of long tail keywords in your content. Most Featured Snippets are triggered by long-tail keywords, so do some keyword research and find the phrases people are likely to be searching for. Here’s a list of top keyword research tools to help you. Take note that search queries answered in Featured Snippets most frequently use the words ‘recipe’, ‘best’, ‘vs’, ‘make’, ‘definition’, and ‘can’.
3. Use Google Search Console to identify which search queries you already rank highly for. These are your best place to start, because they give your content the best chance of being picked up for use in Featured Snippets. You can then filter the queries to find ones that are questions – for example, by searching for ones that include the word “how”. These are the questions you need to clearly answer in your content.
4. Check the “people also ask” box that appears with search results on Google. This will help you identify what other questions people are asking, so that you can create content that answers them.
5. Use Twitter to research the questions people are asking right now. You can do this by searching for keywords – such as “buy a house” – in the Twitter search bar, then leaving a space and typing a question mark, before pressing return.
6. Answer each question concisely. Research has shown that the average length of a paragraph Featured Snippet is 45 words, while the maximum is 97. The average list contains 4.2 items, while the maximum is 8. The average table has 3.6 rows and 2.5 columns, while the maximum is 9 rows and 3 columns. You can make a whole article longer than this, of course – in fact, it’s advisable, because Google has been found to favour longer content these days, but make sure the page is broken up into subheadings followed by bite sized pieces that answer the relevant questions.
7. Answer several related questions in one article. Once a page makes it in to Featured Snippets, it’s likely to get featured for plenty of similar queries, so make sure each page answers a whole selection of related questions to boost its chances of getting picked multiple times. A good way to do this is to have a selection of subheadings on the same page, each answering a different question that someone might ask that’s related to your main topic.
8. Accompany each paragraph with a strong image. This will make it even more eye-catching when it appears as a Featured Snippet and increase your click-through rate.
At Primedia Marketing we’re experts at improving our clients’ search engine rankings – and that includes helping them appear in Featured Snippets. We’ll take care of all the factors mentioned above, and many more, to ensure your website performs brilliantly. If you’d like to know more, get in touch today.