Google’s Featured Snippets: Quick Start Guide

Snippets. Do you use them? Do you know what they are?

In this quick guide, we provide an overview of the featured snippet, and how these brief extracts could bring big benefits to your business…

What are featured snippets?

When you type a question into Google, as well as the paid sponsored listings, you will likely come across some organic featured snippets that seem to perfectly answer your question.

Snippets themselves are special boxes where the format of a regular online search result is reversed, showing the descriptive snippet first.

They can also appear within a related questions group (e.g., “People Also Ask”).

Featured Snippet On People Also Ask Panel
Featured Snippet On People Also Ask Panel

Why do featured snippets matter?

There are several reasons why you should consider featured snippets:

Page 1 shortcut

Featured snippets help you get to the top of Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) without having to pay for ads. It’s a shortcut to your website from page 1 search results!

Ultimate brand awareness

If your snippet is selected by Google, your brand will be up there in lights for all to see – and all for free!

This will help strengthen your brand identity by demonstrating that “you know your stuff” – hence being selected as the brand best positioned to answer the user’s question.

More eyeballs on your site

Featured snippets contain a link to the website from which they came.

With your snippet considered engaging enough to appear on Google, this is also usually enough for the user to click through to your site for more information.

And if your website is working the right way, you’ll engage that user for even longer. It’s a great way to be awarded new clients, and a better Google ranking.

Types of featured snippet

There are several different types of featured snippet to suit different content types:

Paragraph snippet

A paragraph snippet is a short piece of text – approximately 40-60 words – that provides a brief answer to questions like “How“, “Who“, “Why“, “When“, and “What“.

For the best chance of featuring, pose the question in a heading (e.g., H2 or H3) and then answer the question immediately following.

Question Featured Snippet Example
Question Featured Snippet Example

Bulleted/Numbered snippet

Lists can be used to rank things, show the steps of a process, or identify different products. Here we see a process list for starting a new business in Australia. Think of how you can create lists for the services or products you provide…

Bullet List Featured Snippet
Bullet List Featured Snippet

Table snippet

A large percentage of Google’s featured snippets are tables.

Table snippets are great for easy-to-view data comparisons.

What information can you tabulate on your site?

Table Featured Snippet Example
Table Featured Snippet Example

Video snippet

Video snippets are very popular, with YouTube being one of the largest search engines in the world. Video featured snippets can be useful for “how-to” queries, especially those relating to practical processes where visuals are key. The example here shows the top results for how to make an origami swan (you know you want to try).

Video Featured Snippet
Video Featured Snippet

Other search features/rich results

  • People Also Ask
  • How-To
  • FAQ
  • Knowledge Graph
  • Knowledge Panel
  • Entity Panel
  • Image Pack
  • Map/Local Pack
  • Sitelinks
  • Popular Products
  • Reviews
  • Related Products
  • Shops
  • App Install
  • Tweets
  • Top Stories
  • Related Searches

View some examples below:

How To Featured Snippet In Steps List Format
How To Featured Snippet In Steps List Format
Site Links Rich Results Snippet Example
Site Links Rich Results Snippet Example
Image Pack Snippet Example
Image Pack Snippet Example

How to earn Google’s featured snippets

So, you now know what a featured snippet is, but how do you now make it happen? Here are seven steps to help you earn a Google featured snippet.

1. Keyword research – choose questions or topics on which you are an authority

Using words or phrases related to your products or services will help your snippet appear where and when you want it to.

Check out Mailchimp’s list of 12 free keyword research tools as a place to start.

2. Take note of the format of featured snippets and the selected keywords

Type your question into Google and see what appears.

What formats seem to be most popular? What keywords are people using?

How can you apply this information to your own website content (without copying, of course)?

3. Identify competitors’ featured snippets

Competitor analysis is important in any content creation, to ensure you stay ahead of the rest.

Featured snippets are no different.

Search for answers in your industry and see what your competitors are doing.

And then do better.

4. Use this information to structure and produce content

When you have your keywords and target snippet type/s, get onto the content.

This is what will ultimately work for you. But, importantly, don’t just form sentences from your keywords and think that’ll be enough.

These days, Google looks for good, authentic, original content over keyword use.

Is your content personalised and proper?

Remember, you can always engage a people-centric copywriter to assist…

5. Mark up and structure pages

Have a look at your existing website pages.

And look for ways you can tailor them for Featured Snippets.

Again, you can engage a copywriter to assist with this task, along with an SEO specialist, such as Rogue Web Design, who offer an in-depth SEO service to help boost your rankings and get you prominent on the SERPs.

For the best outcome, engage both specialists to work in collaboration.

6. Add quality graphics and images

Graphics and images provide contrast to the copy, generating greater interest and helping reinforce key points to those who are more visual.

From an SEO perspective, images can help with ‘rich results’, providing a greater chance to appear in image packs or image search results (don’t forget to name and caption your images using your keywords!).

In addition, other sites may find your graphics useful, and so may choose to link to or share your resources – creating backlinks that are great for optimising your rank.

When to call in the experts

The above steps can be very time-consuming – and, not to mention, boring – for the average business owner.

It may be more cost-effective to appoint experts to assist. Copywriters (like myself), SEO experts and web builders are a great place to start.

Even better if you can collate a team of these experts to help make it all happen!

Such a team can also address other elements of Google success, such as increasing a website’s topical authority through bulking up your content, and off-page activities like social media and backlinks, frequency of content, and so on.

There’s so much to think about. Why not leave the thinking to us?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) for Google Featured Snippets

How can I mark my page as a featured snippet?

You cannot mark your page to appear as a featured snippet. Instead, Google systems determine whether a page would make a good featured snippet and, if so, will elevate it. Not got the time? Not sure exactly what to do? Call in the experts.
I work regularly with SEO experts and website developers – such as Rogue Web Design who are leaders in both fields – giving me a solid understanding of the nuances relating to SEO content and copy. As a bonus, this collaboration enables me to deliver complete solutions at best cost.

What happens when a user clicks a featured snippet?

Clicking a featured snippet takes the user directly to the section of the page that appeared in the featured snippet. Scrolling to the position that appeared in the snippet happens automatically, without any additional annotation by the site. So, if you’re wanting to draw your audience’s attention to something specific on a page, a featured snippet is the ideal way to make that happen. Need some help? Contact me for a chat.

How do featured snippets influence search and SEO?

Featured snippets are important for SEO because they can increase your click-through rate, drive more traffic to your site, enhance your brand awareness, and establish your credibility as an expert.

How are Google featured snippets chosen?

As quoted by Google itself, Google’s automated systems determine whether a page would make a good featured snippet to highlight for a specific search request. Note that snippets are automatically created from page content. Once again we’re reminded, content is key.

Why Choose Us?

Unlike many large agencies with their templated approach, I have a people-first mentality. I take the time to understand every client, every person – who you are and what is important to you – so that we can find and implement the most effective communications solutions and deliver your messages the right way.

This is also true of my SEO copywriting. Naturally, I consider the keywords and take into consideration competitor activity. But, I couple this with the genuine, authentic content that today’s search engines seek to ensure you get results.

Furthermore, for those searching for optimum SEO impact, I partner with SEO experts such as Rogue Web Design to deliver SEO reports and, from those, website content that will really make a difference.

If you want to stand out, choose Waterer Communications.

It’s never about the message. It’s about the way it’s delivered.

Contact me for a friendly chat and to find out more about how we can collaborate.

Posted in

Building on the foundation of a successful copywriting business, Susan Waterer established Waterer Communications in 2020, a boutique, customer-centric agency providing expertise and services across a range of services, including brand and marketing communications, copywriting, events, tenders, social media and public relations.

Leave a Comment

Article Summary:
    More Articles:
    Table Featured Snippet Example
    Google’s Featured Snippets: Quick Start Guide

    Article written by Susan Waterer of Waterer Communications in conjunction with Rogue Web Design. Read the featured snippet article on Waterer Communications blog. Snippets. Do you use them? Do you know what they are? In this quick guide, we provide an overview of the featured snippet, and how these brief extracts could bring big benefits…

    Laptop With Google Search Open
    How to get your new website to show on google

    A question I get asked frequently by new clients after launching their new website … “How do I get my website to show on google? I’m not getting any visits”. I get the frustration. So today I’ll share 5 simple tips that work for me. So, you’ve just launched your site. You are excited about…

    Photoshop File Export Save For Web Legacy
    How To Save Images for Web in Photoshop

    In this article I’ll go through each step you need to take to save images for web in Photoshop, including how to balance size vs resolution, and optimising for SEO.

    Woman Updating Website Seo Quick Wins That Can Be Implemented Today
    5 Quick SEO Wins You Can Implement Today

    Looking for a few quick SEO Wins? Look no further. Here are 5 tried and tested tactics that you can implement today with little technical knowledge.

    Business Basics Grants Program Qld 16 May 2022 Website Seo 5k Grants
    Business basics grants qld – opening soon

    Round 3 of the Business Basics grants qld program opens 9am, 16 May 2022 for businesses based in South East Queensland (SEQ) and regional Queensland.

    Rogue Web Design Google Search Engine Results Page Google Analytics
    4 Tips to Optimise your Web Pages for Search Engines

    Experts in the SEO space all agree there is over 200 known ranking factors. Fortunately, there are some tried and true wins for optimising individual web pages so they rank higher in the SERPS.

    Person typing into a Wordpress blog
    Why You Need A Blog On Your Real Estate Website

    While there are a number of real agents and companies that are leveraging blogs to support their sales interactions, there’s not nearly enough. Having a blog where you post valuable content for potential clients can make a huge impact in your business. Read three reasons Why You Need A Blog On Your Real Estate Website.

    Acm Crc Australian Composites Manufacturing Website
    ACM CRC Website

    ACM CRC Rebrand and Website Launched: 2024 | Project length: 6 months Rogue were appointed to work on the rebrand project for Australian Composites Manufacturing (ACM) CRC, previously, SOMAC CRC, in 2023. Our deliverables of the project included developing the new logo, visual identity, stationery, iconography, collateral, templates, styleguide, and, of course, the new website.…

    Almighty Tiny Homes Website
    Almighty Tiny Homes Website

    Almighty Tiny Homes Launched: 2024 | Project length: 3 months Almighty Tiny Homes manufacture high-quality yet affordable portable modular homes that offer the best in tiny home living. With over 100 years of collective experience in building, shopfitting, materials sourcing, designing, and delivering custom quality Australian-manufactured products, ATH know what makes a proper home. Their…

    Rapid Jet Pressure Cleaning Website
    Rapid Jet Pressure Website

    Rapid Jet Pressure Cleaning Website Launched: 2024 | Project length: 3 months Rapid Jet Pressure Cleaning opened its doors in June 2022, a local family owned and operated business located in Mount Cotton, QLD. They specialise in a range of pressure washing and soft washing as well as organic growth removal for both homes and businesses.…

    Green Concrete Products Website
    Green Concrete Products Website

    Green Concrete Products Launched: 2024 | Project length: 4 months Green Concrete Products are Australia’s market leader in end-to-end concrete flooring solutions. They are an Australian distributer of Ashford Formula™ and RetroPlate® products, and have been trusted since 2011 to deliver the best that concrete densification and concrete polishing systems have to offer. In 2023,…

    Empower Battery Co Website Laptop Desktop Web Design
    Empower Battery Co Website

    Empower Battery Co Website Launched: 2022 |  Project length: 3 months Empower Battery Co are an SEQ based mobile car battery replacement service run by a small team of passionate experts. Their battery replacement range includes car, truck, motorcycle, golf cart, boat, 4WD, heavy machinery, mowers and more. In late 2021 the team approached us…