Businesses are constantly striving to earn top rankings and results in Google Search. In fact, most businesses measure their entire SEO strategy based on high keyword placement in Google Searches. Addressing strategies to earn top results can help users improve their website’s overall rank such as advanced keyword research, monitoring Google’s search algorithms and penalties, and improving technical features and user experience. Beyond top organic results, the most optimized websites and content can potentially earn featured snippets that rank above all other search content when users type in a query.
A featured snippet or featured result is the box of information that is highlighted by Google to help users answer their query. For example, if a user types in “most expensive car in the world,” the featured snippet will highlight a webpage or article that is well-researched, or has the proper data markup, that answers the question as quickly as possible. Featured snippets quickly redirect users to an article or webpage and rank above all organic search results. But earning a featured snippet takes a lot of time and investment in your SEO strategy.
To earn Google’s most coveted real-estate, featured search results and featured snippets, SEO strategists have to merge content writing skills with technical coding to help search engines identify extremely relevant content. Featured snippets can be earned if website content, such as an article or landing page, has specific technical markup that matches the context of your content’s purpose.
For example, webmasters and SEO specialists could write an FAQ page for their users about a business’s main services and business information. To potentially earn a featured snippet for your FAQ content the webmaster would also have to apply technical markup code so that Google could more accurately crawl the page and feature the questions as featured results.
Featured snippets take a lot of work to earn but the reward is more than worth the effort. Having a featured result on Google can help websites rank for voice searches as well as multiple queries for the same keyword. Let’s dive into some of the ways in which businesses can earn and measure their strategy for earning a featured result on Google.
What type of content can earn a featured snippet on Google?
Webpages, images, and blogs are always important for SEO. But adding specific types of content with the associated data markup is the surefire way to compete for a featured snippet. The two best places to start are Google’s guide for structured data and the Search Gallery:
- Structured data guide: Google allows users to use three types of structured data coding to earn rich results. JSON-LD is recommended by Google but users can also ad Microdata and RDFa for rich results. If you’re not sure what to use, we recommend using this JSON Schema Generator .
- Search Gallery: The Search Gallery tool allows users to find out if specific content types and information qualifies for rich results. FAQs, School Announcements, Books, Articles, Recipes, COVID-19 announcements (for medical businesses), and local businesses can add schema. Take some time to plan content that can potentially earn rich results and featured snippets with structured data.
It is crucial to understand that not all websites and content types qualify for certains structured data. For example, all businesses should have “LocalBusiness” schema data since the rules are generalized for all business types and because this data is helpful for Local SEO purposes. Make sure you follow the rules on certain schema types to ensure that you can earn rich results. For example, ecommerce sites should all be able to apply “Product” structured data if they offer specific products and identify the key features of said product: price, reviews, ratings, specifications, etc.
On the contrary, a website that doesn’t provide related information about entertainment (books, movies, etc.) can’t feasibly add related schema code. Take some time to learn the rules and create content that you can earn featured results for.
How do I add structured data to my website content?
Follow the instructions on Google’s Search Gallery and Structured Data Guidelines to begin developing the code. Double-check that the content you wrote or created has all the information available to successfully crawl additional structured data. Again, online schema generators are a valuable resource to help ensure that your code is accurate.
Once the code is completed you’ll want to test it before adding it onto your website. Simply use Google’ Rich Results test to check the code for errors. If you believe that an older page with schema markup is having issues you can also check the code by URL. If your code is ready to sure, then make sure it is added to the backend of your website and/or appropriate pages in the header section.
*Remember, the more detailed competitive types of content are, like how-to resources and FAQs, the more likely they’ll be featured. Write and create the most detailed and informational content to build a more competitive content piece.*
Need a helping hand with structured data? Contact Boston Web Marketing
Business owners have significant challenges ahead of them with the COVID-19 pandemic disrupting our sense of normalcy, on top the day-to-day operational challenges they have. If you’re a business owner that wants to have a more robust and competitive online marketing presence, then contact our team today! We provide a free audit of your website and can help provide cost-effective SEO strategies, which drive more online customers to your business.