Sam Makad is a business consultant. He helps small & medium enterprises to grow their businesses and overall ROI. You can follow Sam on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin.
Featured Snippets are short snippets of text that appear at the top of Google’s search results in order to quickly answer a searcher’s query. Create content that has the chance of ranking in featured snippets.
Every website, regardless of its size or authority, can get a featured snippet on Google, provided that the content is right. The following six tips might help you persuade Google to give you the featured snipped you want.
1. Optimize Your Website To Get A Top 10 Ranking In Google
According to Ahrefs, almost 99.6% of all featured snippets belong to the top ten search results. Getting on the first page of search results for your desired keywords is the best method to increase your odds to earn a featured snippet.
2. Reverse Engineer The Featured Snippets Of Your Competitors
Most probably, the most lucrative of all keywords you target already have featured snippets. This is something you can use to improve your SEO results. Check the web pages associated with those featured snippets and try to understand the reasons why they have been awarded with this traffic-generating bonus.
While you are at it, remember to check out the 'People also ask' block of content, as it showcases the most relevant questions on specific topics. Also, by analyzing this section, you'll gain a better understanding of what content Google shows to users in your target group.
Don't copy the content of your competitors but try to come up with your own, better version of that information bit. Here is a good guide on how to target for PAA inclusion.
3. Keyword Research
If you didn't know it, it's time to find out that you can use keyword research for your featured snippets optimization. Just use search terms that include questions starting with who, where, what, how, which, and why. One of the best free tools to discover hundreds of questions your target group is Answer the Public
While you're doing your keyword research, remember to include also those keywords you already rank for. Since you're already ranking, it will be easier to optimize your content around these keywords to get a featured snippet. Also, use Google Search Console to identify the keywords people use to find your company online.
MOZ, one of the best known SEO tools, is another source of finding out which keywords are important for your business, and which ones are already shown as featured snippets. You'll find this information in the 'SERP features' section of MOZ.
4. Write A Single Paragraph To Answer The Question
According to HubSpot, you should write a 50-word paragraph to answer the question. Try to keep this answer short, objective and to the point, while also trying to lure readers into visiting your page to find out more. The easy way of doing this is to use the title to hint users that they will find in-depth information about that topic on your website and build trust.
5. Code Also Matters
According to the same research by HubSpot, a clear design and a clutter-free code are also essential if you want Google to notice your content. This is where the MODX CMS comes into play. This is a light CMS, very easy to read by search engine spiders. By keeping your code to a minimum, you help Google to see what an awesome piece of content you want to display in the featured snippet.
Also, keep in mind that Google loves lists of facts. You can code your lists by yourself, but you can also take advantage of H3 subheadings, as Google knows how to use them to generate lists. Even though Google's algorithm is quite advanced at this, you should make it easier by adding numbers to your subheadings the right way, e.g. 1., 2., 3., rather than 1), 2), 3).
If you want search engine users to click through to land on your website, you need to list at least eight items. Furthermore, try to include the question in the H2 heading or right on top of the list.
6. Google My Business
Even though this result type isn't a featured snippet, but a knowledge card, it is extremely important for your business, because Google shows such results to the top of their SERPs. This information can only be accessed via a Google My Business profile, so you have to create one before being able to use it to your advantage.
Remember that Google may decide at any given time that another page offers a better answer to the question. This means that today's featured snippets may be gone tomorrow. This is why the optimization of your website should be an ongoing project.
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