Featured Snippets: Improve Your Chances of Winning Google's Popularity Contest - DeanHouston+

Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, Inspire

Featured Snippets: Improve Your Chances of Winning Google’s Popularity Contest

Have you ever wondered how your content ends up as the featured snippet of Google’s search engine results page (SERP)? Well, it’s probably not how you think.

Think of featured snippets as the winner of a popularity contest among all the content across the internet. Oddly, it’s somehow as simple as it is difficult to earn the spot. Let me explain.

What is a Featured Snippet?
Also known as an answer box or position zero result, a featured snippet is any selected content displayed at the top of a search engine results page.

It can be anything from a list, paragraph, chart, video, accordion, rich answer, or calculator. To determine which content should be displayed as a featured snippet, Google uses an automated system with advanced algorithms. Think of it as the judge of the popularity contest.

What’s Special About Featured Snippets?
Winning Google’s popularity contest comes with a special prize: boosting organic click-through rates (CTR) without needing to pay your way to the top. Specifically, featured snippet content can have an increased click-through rate of over 100% compared to content lower on the search engine results page. Of course, this boost in CTR improves brand awareness and customer engagement, which can lead to increased profits.

How to Win the Featured Snippet Spot?
Unlike sponsored ads (the other type of content typically found at the top of SERP), the featured snippet spot is earned. That means you can’t pay Google to get your content at the top of the search page. The only way to get your content to become a featured snippet is by making it popular enough to win the contest.

Here’s how:

Focus on Question-Based Queries
In other words, create content that answers questions (the how, the what, the why, and so on). Do this by providing detailed information about your product or service, writing blogs that answer specific questions and including an FAQ section. The more helpful your content is, the better. Also, remember: Google is international, so don’t limit yourself to one audience.

Organize Page Structure
Frame answers in a way that can be easily read (between 54-58 words). For answers that require detailed explanations, use a step-by-step approach. Finally, make sure all of your content is using headings and paragraph tags correctly. If Google doesn’t know where to look for answers, then your content will have no chance of winning the featured snippets spot.

Use Keywords, Ranking and Strategy
While the debate on whether schema markups and backlinks help push content to the featured snippets spot continues, the one thing that you can count on is SEO keywords. Run an audit on your website to see your current SEO keywords and make sure you refresh your content accordingly, making the necessary adjustments to prioritize question-based queries.

Earning the featured snippet spot is no easy feat. There’s a lot of competition out there. The entire internet, to be exact. So even if you’re not popular enough to win Google’s popularity contest, just know that you can’t go wrong with optimizing your content. It will only improve your customer’s experience, which is never a bad thing.

However, if your brand means business, make sure you have the best chances of winning the featured snippet spot by chatting with a marketing pro who knows the ins and outs of developing successful marketing strategies.

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