| | |

Tapping Into Google’s Featured Snippet Box

In 2014, Google introduced featured snippet boxes, an exciting new way to give users the quick answers they’re seeking. According to Google, “When a user asks a question in Google Search, we might show a summary of the answer in a special featured snippet box at the top of the search engine results page (SERP). This featured snippet box (also called an answer box) includes a summary of the answer, extracted from a webpage, plus a link to the page, the page title and URL.” A featured snippet might look something like this one that came up when I asked, “What is a featured snippet?”

Screenshot 2016-05-01 10.15.17

You can see how the answer to the question is provided in a clear, direct, simple way. This is a great experience for users, and evidently Google likes it, too.

Why snippet boxes matter

In the past few years Google has been refining the way that it displays results to users. In particular, Google has been increasing the number of “featured snippets” that it displays for queries.

Frankly, you should really give a damn about them, because these simple boxes dramatically increase the click-through rate (CTR) of results ranking within them…and the results directly below them.

How to get featured snippets for your own website

It boils down to these four simple steps:

  1. Identify a common, simple question related to your market area.
  2. Provide a clear and direct answer to the question.
  3. Offer value added info beyond the direct answer.
  4. Make it easy for users (and Google) to find on your page.

This is what we at Solamar see in common among all the sites that have received featured snippets.

Do snippet boxes actually work?

“So to give you an example, let’s say you rank #1 (the first post below the snippet box) on page one of Google for a keyword that’s searched for 10,000 times. From the data collected, you could expect roughly 1,700 visits, compared to the 3,700 you might see if you landed the featured snippet spot—and that’s just one keyword,” says one expert.

Wow! I’ll say they work big time! In my opinion, getting a featured snippet for key pages on your site is a very good thing. The business value depends on identifying common questions that a potential customer might ask related to your market space. After all, there is no point in getting a featured snippet that has no direct relevance to your business.

How to tap into the potential of snippet boxes

When snippet boxes first came out, people were worried that people would get their answers and not click through to websites. But instead, the worriers were wrong. Snippet boxes have given e-commerce sites a new opportunity to rank for informational queries and boost their site visibility…a major competitive advantage.

That’s why it’s particularly important to optimize your site content for featured snippets. Simply:

  • Find out which questions Google users are asking for your niche — by doing research, asking your own customers or clients, and tracking results. You can answer these questions on specific pages on your site, including blogs and YouTube tutorials.
  • Add a section on your site that specifically answers related questions. At Solamar, we try to include a Q and A or FAQ section on sites we develop for clients, and we try to answer the questions in a few sentences. This doesn’t leave Goggle guessing.

It all comes down to answering frequently asked questions tersely (experts agree on ideally 54 to 58 words) and comprehensively, providing information that goes beyond the immediate answer, writing about topics you’re an expert in, and keeping people engaged.

When you want the optimal SERP and click-thru rates (and hopefully, even a Google featured snippet box), all you have to do is click here. The experts at Solamar are ready and waiting to help you get the results and site traffic you want.