Getting traffic to your startup’s site is vital as you work to gain leverage and ultimately expand your business. Let’s discuss a few hard-hitting tips you can use to get into what’s called Position 0: the Google Featured Snippets area.
1. Perform Normal High Ranking Activity
Keep working on your normal SEO work because most of the snippets on the Google search results pages come from the Top 5 results on the page. If you rank in the top 5 naturally for a keyword, you improve your chances of getting chosen for the snippet area.
2. Use Tools to Find Snippet Information
It’s now important that you choose an SEO tool that reveals which keywords trigger the featured snippet on Google. Most shorter keyword strings won’t trigger a position 0 opportunity so you want a tool that reveals which keyword strings to target.
3. Go Back to Old Content & Reformat
Once you’re using a tool that helps you find which phrases to target, go back to old content and rework it so it’s optimized for getting found for that snippet string. This way, you don’t need to create completely new blog posts in order to rank for this type of search result.
Here are some pointers for how to get found for snippet keywords:
4. Keep Paragraphs to the Proper Length
In order for Google to pull snippets from your content, keep your paragraphs at around 40 to 50 words. Many snippets are answers to questions. So ask the question on your page and then answer it in a 40 to 50-word paragraph to give you a better chance of getting picked up as a snippet.
5. Structure is Important
Snippets are usually formatted as tables, paragraphs, and lists. This means you should structure your content with one of these 3 formats.
If you’re writing a “how-to” article, you need to clearly notate each step so Google sees how to snip out Step 1, Step 2, etc. Use tables if you’re writing a comparison list and Google will snip out the table’s information.
6. Make Lists 8 Items or Longer
This strategy is aimed at getting more clicks from Google over to your site. If your list is longer than 8 items, then Google inserts a “See More” link after your eighth item. When searchers click that link, they come to your article.
Of course, don’t add in more than 8 items to your list if the subject matter doesn’t warrant a longer list. It will only serve to weaken your content and result in more back button activity, which will make your overall SEO efforts suffer.
7. Long-Tails & Questions Work Best
Use questions when your goal is to get a paragraph style snippet. Look for long-tail question keywords to focus on. If you do a good job answering the question for the reader, you increase your chances of getting found in the snippet area.
The type of questions matter as well. For example, “why” questions almost always get featured as snippets while under 50% of “how” questions get selected for this coveted spot.
8. Use the Top of Your Content Page
If at all possible, place your snippable content near the top of your content. There isn’t any data to support whether this alone helps rank for snippets, but it stands to reason that you’ll help the overall user experience.
The reason is that your searcher reads your snippet at Google, clicks through to your site and now expects to see the full answer immediately. You don’t want the answer to the question buried somewhere deep within your content.
As with any SEO technique, such as link building or keyword insertion, use caution here. You don’t want to lose natural flow with your writing because you’re going overboard with snippet optimization.
Follow the above tips in order to give your startup’s site a better chance to get found for featured snippets and watch for the resulting surge in traffic.