How to Get Google Featured Snippets for Your Blog Contents In 2019

Are you wondering about how to get featured snippets for your blog contents in Google? If yes, this detailed guide is for you.

Google featured snippets are becoming a trend.

For instance, when you type “how to get fit”, Google show up a featured snippets box where you will quickly find the relevant information.

snippet ex

Are you curious to know about how to get those Google’s featured snippet box for your blog or website content? Well, you are in the right place then.

Google was built for users, not websites.

If you keep that ONE statement in mind while creating content, you will have more chances of getting Google’s featured snippet box for your site. If you create content by keeping your target audience in mind, you will get a lot of love from Google in terms of search traffic and sales.

So let’s get into the details without much ado.

The Beginners Guide to Getting Featured Snippets In 2019

google featured snippets

What are featured snippets?

Featured snippets are “selected search results” which are featured on top of Google’s search results (shows up in a box).

Most of the times, these featured snippets help searchers get the required answers to their questions right away. Featured snippets are also known as answer boxes for the very same reason. They answer users questions (without spending more time on search).

Here’s how a featured snippet looks like;

featured snippet example

As you can see from the above featured snippet example, how one of our search results look like when entered the keyword “blog submission list”. If you notice closely, Google is also showing a clickable link with “More Items” and when people click on it, it will take them to the post by showing the rest of the contents.

According to Ahrefs, 12.29 percent of search queries have featured snippets in the search results. Only 30.9 percent of featured snippets rank at the very top placement in the organic results. 99.58 percent of the featured snippets are already in the top 10 positions in Google.

snippet data

In a nutshell, featured snippets are a format which is supposed to provide users with a highly relevant and direct answer to the users’ questions on the search results.

Here’s another interesting finding from Ahrefs case study on featured snippets.

When there’s a featured snippet at the #1 position, it only gets ~8.6% of clicks (on average), while the page that ranks right below it will get ~19.6% of clicks (on average). How does it compare to a regular #1 ranking page with no featured snippet above it? That page will get ~26% of all clicks.

average ctr

That means, nearly 26% of all clicks will be generated to #1 ranking page with a featured snippet.

Enough said about the importance of featured snippets but how do you actually get them?

So what are the benefits of getting Google’s featured snippets for your blog? Let’s talk about them now.

3 Great Benefits of Getting Featured Snippets for Your Site

  1. Google featured snippets can increase your website search traffic. According to a recent case study done by Search Engine Land, they clearly can help a website’s rankings to go higher in search results.
  1. Your target audience get direct answers to their queries. Think about it for a second. How awesome it would be if they get a relevant, high quality and direct answer without going through a lot of links on the Internet?
  1. Getting featured snippets for your site itself says you are ranking in the top 5 search results. Because most of the times, top 5 search results get featured snippets information, so if you are trying to get them, make sure to rank higher in search results. Here’s a detailed easy to follow tutorial on how to get better search rankings for any keyword.

The Ultimate Hack to Get Featured Snippets Easily: Use SEMrush

One of the most effective ways to get featured snippets is to use an SEO tool like SEMrush which gives you complete data of your website’s featured snippets.

It looks something like this;

semrush featured data

As you can see above, SEMrush shows you the;

  • Total opportunities available (from the entered keywords,we are tracking 404 keywords)
  • For which we are already showing
  • New keywords for which we started showing up since last update (24 hours)
  • Lost keywords
  • New on SERP shows for which keywords Google now started showing featured snippets

So if you’re someone who’s concerned more about getting snippets on Google box, you must start using SEMrush.

Click here to try SEMrush free 14 day trial (worth $47)

How to Get Featured Snippets In Google?

Now comes the most important question: how can you get featured snippets for your blog posts in Google search results.

Here’s the quick tip: One of the fastest ways to get featured snippets for your contents is to get into top 10 search results and make sure to increase your CTR (Click Through Rates).

That being said, here are few PROVEN tips that worked well for us to get featured snippets and also helped in getting more clicks in Google organic results for many of the blog posts on Bloggers Passion.

Start using power words in your headlines

Did you know that you can increase your chances of getting more clicks for your contents by using the “power words”? Yes, that’s true.

Power words (aka compelling words) help make your headlines more compelling and click-worthy). Here’s a list of some of the most powerful emotional words you can use in your headlines to increase your click-through rates.

  • Popular
  • Exclusive
  • Valuable
  • How to
  • Ultimate
  • Easily
  • Approved
  • Competitive
  • Mammoth

Quick tip: Here’s an excellent resource on the power words which you can use within your contents such as your post titles and meta description to get better CTR in Google search results.

Include numbers within your headlines

Here are few more quick hacks you can use within your headlines to get more click-through rates and increase your chances of getting featured snippets on Google.

Use numbers within your headlines.

Pro tip: Include odd numbers to get more clicks in Google results. For instance, use “top 11 ways to run faster” instead of “top 10 ways to run” as odd numbers are tend to get more clicks. Weird fact!

Here’s an example of one such headline sample;

Another tip is to use brackets and special symbols to grab users attention. Here’s an example of such headline;

  • How to Get Better Search Rankings (Even If You’re A Beginner)

As you can see the above example includes some of the words within the brackets at the end.

Implement star ratings for your posts

One of the easiest ways to increase your website click-through rates is to get star ratings for your contents as they stand unique and helps you distinguish your results when compared to your competitors.

Here’s how star ratings for contents look like on Google;

wpx snippet

As you can see from the above, although we’re ranking at #2 for the keyword “WPX hosting review” but you can see that our search result clearly gets more attention after implementing star ratings (which ultimately leads to more click-through rates).

There’s no thumb rule that your contents get featured snippets on Google with star ratings but it entices people to click on your results which ultimately lead to more clicks (which are definitely helpful for getting into top 10 search results and you’ll have higher chances of getting featured snippets too!).

Read: How to Get Star Ratings for Product Reviews In Google Search Really FAST

So are you convinced now that you can increase your chances of getting featured images by implementing star ratings? Good!

But how do you implement star ratings for your contents?

Here’s what we do here at Bloggers Passion to get such star ratings for our contents. You can implement the same to achieve the same results.

Start using Author hReview

Author hReview is a simple to use and highly effective WordPress plugin which adds “Rich Snippets markups” for reviews and ratings.

To put it simply, Author hReview adds hReview and AggregateRating support based on schema.org which helps you easily increase your website’s search traffic by making SERP results more enticing. This plugin supports only the editorial rating submission (author rating) which is enough for you to get star ratings for your contents.

Side note: We’re currently using Author hReview premium version (which is $69 for one site and it’s a one-time payment) and we also highly recommend you to invest that money as it is worth every single penny!

Header tags play a KEY role

Whether you know it or not, header tags play a vital role in improving your keyword rankings. The key here is to use and optimize your primary and secondary keywords using header tags in most important places.

Use h1, h2, h3, and other heading tags in a logical way (which is extremely important).

The h1 tag should contain your primary keyword which should be highly relevant to the page title. The h2 tag is a subheading which should contain similar keywords to your h1 tag. Your h3 is then a subheading for your h2 and so on.

Here’s an interesting article about meta tags in SEO which gives you a better understanding about what they are all about and how to use them within your content to get better rankings.

The KEY here is to use h1, h2, h3, and other header tags in a logical way (it’s extremely important).

Have a look at how we’re using these header tags for our contents here at Bloggers Passion.

youtube seo table

As you can see from the above image, we are using header tags like h2 and h3 in a logical way. H2 tag should come after the h1 tag and h3 tags after h2 tags. Implement the similar usage of header tags if you really want to improve the organic rankings of your keywords.

Featured Snippets Types explained with examples

There are several types of featured snippets usually show up in Google search results which are listed below.

  1. Paragraph
  2. List
  3. Table

Quick note: Among the above 3 featured snippets types, paragraphs are being the most important.

getstat data

As you can see, Getstat whitepaper on featured snippets, here are some of the interesting findings;

  • Paragraph snippets were most common, showing up in 82% of featured snippets.
  • List snippets appeared in 10.8%
  • Table snippets in 7.3%

There’s one more interesting finding from their study which says, while “People also ask” (PAA) results only show up in 22% of featured snippet queries, they appear to be related. In 23% of the SERPs with both, the first PAA answer was identical to the featured snippet answer.

So let’s briefly talk about these 3 types of featured snippets.

1. Paragraph featured snippets

These featured snippets in paragraphs and here’s how an example paragraph featured snippet looks like;

paragraph featured snippet example

Pro tip: To increase your chances of getting featured snippets for paragraphs, you can use “question-based subheadings” and write its corresponding reply in the immediate paragraph. Try to keep the paragraph length between 40 to 50 words (Approx 300 characters).

2. List featured snippets

The list featured snippets as the name suggests are shown in list types on Google search snippet box which looks like this;

list featured snippet example

Pro tip: When creating a list post, add more than 8 items to it. As in that case, Google will add more items link which is a direct link to your post. It’s a good practice to use at least “10 listicles” in a list post to properly show up on list featured snippets.

3. Table featured snippets

Google also displays table type of featured snippets which includes tables which look like this;

table featured snippet example

Pro tip: Google shows 3 columns and 9 rows in a featured snippet table. So add just three columns in your table and try to add more than 9 rows to your table as in that case Google will add more rows link which will point back to your original post.

3 Important Takeaways We Learned On Getting Featured Snippets

Here are few important learnings we’ve learned so far while researching about getting featured snippets and we thought to share them with you so you can also learn more about how to easily get them for your site.

1. Spy on your competitors featured snippets

One of the most effective ways to get featured snippets for your content is to find keywords for which your competitors are already showing up in the featured snippet box.

But how can you do that?

You can find the list of those terms easily with SEMrush. Here’s how it looks like;

snippets in action

Quick tip: You just need to create a project in position tracking on SEMrush (where you can also enter your competitors to compare) to find featured snippets.

As you can see above, SEMrush is showing a list of all the links that our site is getting featured snippets for. It also shows your position changes so you can work on your traffic generating blog posts accordingly.

Read: SEMrush vs Ahrefs Ultimate Review: Which Is the Best SEO Tool for 2018?

As said above, SEMrush also shows you the featured snippets of your competitors.

Here’s how the competitors featured snippet looks like;

featured snippets competitors

As you can see above, SEMrush is showing all the position changes also along with the featured snippets of the competitors. SEMrush position tracking data shows you the following information.

  • Reviews on SERP
  • Sitelinks
  • Videos on SERP
  • Images on SERP
  • Featured snippets
  • People also ask
  • AdWords information

Once you have the list, you need to create better content that could outrank your competitors in featured snippets.

You can also use tools like Ahrefs to find your competitors featured snippets. Here’s how all queries for which ShoutMeLoud.com is showing in featured snippet box. It also shows your competitor keywords in that section which can be used for new and for improving the existing keywords. Here’s how it looks like;

ahrefs snippets

2. Ranking on the first page results

Did you know that you don’t actually require to rank in the 1st position to be able to get featured snippets? Yes, that’s true.

Getstat claims that 70% of snippets came from sites outside of the first organic position. So it’s required that the page is ranked in the top 10, but it’s not required to be #1 to be featured.

That being said, you can increase your chances of ranking for featured snippets or in other words, ranking at position zero on Google search if you’re already ranking in the top 10 organic results for your targeted keywords.

3. Stop using special symbols

Don’t use 1) or #1 etc at the headline level. Since Google bots use an algorithm to understand your content type, so we should instead use 1. 2. 3. etc while creating list posts.

Please look at the image below (Hubspot Research):

numbered snippets

We often use #1 at our subheadings like h2 and h3 (also in the bullet points where we use list type of contents), so we now have stopped using them.

According to Getstat whitepaper on featured snippets, Schema.org markup is actually less common on featured snippet URLs than it is on regular search results. They found out that the code snippet of itemtype=”http://schema.org/ appeared on 15.7% of featured snippet URLs, but saw the same markup on 19.6% of regular search result URLs.

3 Simple Steps That Will Help You With Google Featured Snippets

Step 1: Find out all the basic questions your target audience might have

First things first. Google mostly shows featured snippets box for basic questions. Questions like “how to start a blog”, “how to cook”, “reduce belly fat” often gets direct answers from Google which are fetched from a web page (URL included for detailed information).

So if you want to get Google featured snippets for your blog’s content, make sure to find a list of all the “basic questions” your audience might have in their mind.

Find out what they might type on Google to get answers. The more you dig into the basics of your field the better chances you have to get a snippet box on search results.

Take away: Focus on the most basic questions in your field. For instance, if you are running a fitness blog, “how to get flat stomach”, “reduce belly fat” can be the most basic questions.

Step 2: Write “How to” posts

What I’ve observed after reading a lot of tutorials around Google’s featured snippets box and seeing the actual results is that Google often show up snippets for “how to” queries.

Provide clear, direct and simple answers through your content.

If you can do that, you will have better chances of getting snippet box in Google search results for your blog’s content.

And make sure to format your posts nicely for your audience. Formatting your blog’s content is the surefire way to get more reader attention. Remember, writing content is not enough. People who read online really have less attention span.

They always love to skim through any website’s content. So it’s your job to make your post formatting compelling and easy to consume. That way you will not only get a better readership but you will get better search rankings and possibly featured snippets from Google.

Don’t write looong and boring paragraphs. Always keep short paragraphs and use a lot of bullet points.

Take away: If you write detailed and useful information how to posts with lots of bullet points, you will have better chances of getting featured box in the Google search results. Include a summary if you want while answering the most basic questions in your industry.

Step 3: You don’t always have to rank #1 for the keywords

Sometimes, you get Google’s featured snippets box even if you rank second. Here’s a screenshot displaying the featured snippet box for the keyword “what is sales funnel”.

Even though it is ranking #2 but it still got the snippet box because of its content.

research

See that? The term “sales funnel” is showing up on Google’s featured box even though it’s ranking on the #2 result. The reason behind it is the content of that particular page is more direct, simple and highly useful.

Take away: Ranking #1 for any keyword is REALLY hard. And ranking #1 for a keyword doesn’t mean you will rank for snippets on Google search results. It’s all about better formatting, giving direct and valuable answers to your readers queries. That’s how you get Google snippet box even if you don’t rank for #1 result. But remember the fact that, Google shows that snippet box mostly for top 5 results. So it’s important to get into top 5 search results for the keywords you want to get snippets.

Bonus tip: consider creating in-depth articles

The key thing I observed after analysing hundreds of articles that got featured snippet box on Google is most of them are really detailed articles.

I don’t say you can easily get Google’s featured snippets box by creating 2000 words articles regularly but you will have better chances of ranking higher in Google search results.

And Google shows a snippet box for your blog content if it ranks in the top 3 or 5 search results for any keyword you are trying to rank for.

If you are wondering how to create in-depth articles that rank well in search results, make sure to head over to this page and you will find lots of golden nuggets to create great content.

If you are looking for quick ways to get better rankings and Google featured snippets box, try implementing the following things on your blog.

  • Always focus on giving your readers the best experience with your design, content and overall user experience. If you focus on users, Google will take care of you.
  • Learn to write long form content with over 2,000 words and try to add as much value as you can to your readers. If they start liking your content, they will come back for more which results in getting more traffic and sales.

Helpful Checklist for Getting Google Featured Snippets

Here are the steps of getting featured snippets box on Google for your content.

  • Make a list of all the basic questions your target audience might type on Google.
  • Create How to posts around them.
  • Give direct answers to the question.
  • Long form of content always ranks well in Google.
  • Use common language. Don’t use jargon while creating content.

So there you go! That’s how your blog content gets Google featured snippets.

How to find featured snippets of any site using SEMrush

Whether you know it or not, SEMrush is the widely used and expert recommended SEO tool. It not only helps you boost your organic traffic but also helps you do a lot more things like backlink analysis as well as finding Google featured snippet box of any site.

So if you are wondering how to find featured snippets of a site, you can simply plug into SEMrush tool and it will give you all the necessary details.

If you are not using SEMrush yet, I highly recommended you to give a try to it.

I’ve an exclusive deal for BloggersPassion readers where you can get 14 days free trial of SEMrush worth $47.

Step 1: Log in to SEMrush dashboard and enter the domain name of the site for which you want to find Google featured snippets. In this example, I’m going to use Problogger.net which is a widely popular marketing blog.

problogger

Step 2: Click on the “Positions” under Organic Research section to get a list of all the keywords that your entered domain ranks.

positions

Step 3: As I said earlier in the article, Google often show up “How to” queries as their snippets in Google search results, so let’s filter out the results using “how to”. Also make sure to use keyword positions less than 6 so you will get faster results from SEMrush.

keywords

Step 4: Now click on the SERP result to know whether the particular keyword is getting featured snippets box on Google search result or not. Remember that, if a keyword is ranking #1 doesn’t guarantee that it will get a snippet box.

Getting rid of Google’s Featured Snippets Box

If in any case you don’t like to get Google featured snippets box for your website or blog content, you can opt out that feature too.

Here’s how to prevent snippets on your page. Use <meta name=”googlebot” content=”nosnippet”> tag on your page and Google stops showing featured snippets box. It’s as simple as that.

FAQs About How to Get Featured Snippets

Here are a few interesting questions you might want to know on how to get Google featured snippets for your websites in 2019.

1. I have a new website. Can I still get featured snippets on Google for my contents?

Yes, you can get featured snippets for your contents even if you have a brand new website. The ONLY thing you need to remember is you need to get into at least top 10 search results for your desired keywords.

According to Ahrefs data, it is 99.58% positive that Google only features pages that already rank in the top 10 organic results. That being said, a single page can also “be featured” for thousands of search queries.

2. How to get into top 10 search results to get featured snippets for my content?

You should be ranking in top 10 search results on Google to be able to get featured snippets for your blog posts or contents. That said, here are few quick tips to get into top 10 search results for your contents.

  • Focus on finding a primary keyword and target at least ONE primary keyword with each and every post you publish on your site
  • You need to optimize your contents well around your primary keyword. It’s also better to find several long tail keywords around your primary keyword and sprinkle them throughout your contents to be able to rank for multiple related keywords.
  • Attract as many links as possible as getting quality links is the surefire way to get into top 10 search results for most of the keywords

3. How much time does it take to get featured snippets on Google?

There’s no specific time on how much time it will take Google to start showing your contents in Google search snippets box. Firstly, your content needs to rank in the first page of Google search results, then you need to provide correct, highly useful and concise answers to the users’ queries.

That being said, as far as our understanding, it will take anywhere around 2 to 3 months for you to get featured snippets for low to medium competitive keywords. We also have written a detailed SEO case study where you can find out how long does it take to get into top 10 results for a keyword.

4. What are the BEST tools I can use to get Google featured snippets easily?

Here are few of the best SEO tools we often use to get Google featured snippets for Bloggers Passion contents.

  • SEMrush (it’s an essential SEO tool which helps you with everything from keyword research to backlink analysis to competitor research)
  • Author hReview (useful for implementing star ratings for your contents)
  • Yoast SEO (a great optimization plugin for all WordPress users which helps you easily optimize your contents for your primary keywords)

5. Are featured snippets going to show up forever for my blog contents?

So once you get featured snippets for your blog contents, are they going to be there forever in Google search results? That’s an interesting question and the answer is a BIG no. Google constantly changes the featured snippets and only keeps the BEST possible answers to show up in the Google featured snippets box.

Also, Ahrefs found that the more popular a keyword is, the more often Google updates featured snippets which means that long tail keywords might not have their SERP updated in 2 to 3 months.

That being said, if any of your competitors create even better content and concise answers for your target audience queries, your contents will be replaced by theirs. It’s as simple as that.

Final Thoughts on Getting Featured Snippets on Google

Getting featured snippets for your contents is doable. It doesn’t matter what industry you are in and it also doesn’t matter whether you have an authority site or not, if you’re providing highly informative and concise answers to the users’ queries, Google is going to show your information in their answer boxes (aka featured snippets).

Have you found this detailed stud on Google featured snippets useful? If yes, please consider sharing it with others and let us know if you’ve any questions in the comments.

15 Comments

  1. Mario Nimal says:

    I have noticed the Google featured snippets for a while now. This really makes the competition fiercer than ever. I’m also guessing the featured snippets for any topic won’t always be consistent since the top 5 search results can vary at any given time. I like one of the things you pointed out: Google was built for users, not websites. This is the most important thing to keep in mind that many of us easily take for granted. Thanks for the awesome tips, Anil!

  2. I’ve always wondered how other bloggers do that to their content. Thanks a bunch for this comprehensive tutorial on how to optimize blog contents for Google’s featured snippets box.

  3. Hi Anil,

    This is wonderful post on getting featured on Google. There are lot of things we need to take care of before we can even think of getting on the top like that which is not very easy task. I am sure your guide will help getting there. Thanks for sharing this wonderful knowledge.

  4. Harman says:

    Hi Anil,
    Its amazing article on Google Featured Snippets benefits, It is the second basic need for every website seo, We have to pass our blog or website from snippets. Yes you are right the top 5 results on the Google have featured snippets. So while doing SEO for the website, we keep this important need in our mind.

  5. I was always very curious to know about How to get featured snippet…I don’t think its easy to get featured snippet when many high authority sites are already ranking…. You need to be at least in Top 10 to get featured snippet…. From your end only one thing you can do is optimize your article for featured snippet. Thanks for sharing this wonderful knowledge..

    • Hi Shivam, yes, you can increase your chances of getting ranked for snippets when you properly optimize your contents. It also has to do with the type of keywords you choose (along with the competition and overall search volume).

  6. Thank you for Sharing Valuable Information. Can you suggest me which is best free plugin for Featured Snippets?

  7. Navin Rao says:

    This is awesome Anil.

    No Wonder, the CTR ratio of feature snippets is in increase and we all want to get those for our blog posts. The strategies you have defined are quite logical and obviously you got the results as well ranking bloggerspassion’s plenty of blog post in feature snippets.

    I have gone through the guide and will implement it on one of my blog in 2019.

    Have a great year ahead!

    • Hi Navin, glad to see you here. Yes, CTR is so crucial if you want to get featured snippets. Also giving direct answers to your users queries is important as it tends to give you featured snippets in the first place. Glad you found it useful!

  8. Hi ankit very well written article,
    But i don’t have any semrush account because as a beginner it too much costly to buy semrush monthly plan.

    There are many websites which provides semrush and ahref at very low monthly plan.

    Does i buy semrush plan from 3rd party or official website of semrush ?

    I have one suggestion for you , i am browsing from mobile , i want to share your this blogpost to my close friend on WhatsApp , but i don”t find any plugin,which make easier just one click share.

    Now i have share this post manually by copying your post url to WhatsApp.

    Thanks

  9. Srinivas says:

    Hello, Very Good and Useful article. Small Issue from my side, I could not see the images at all places, instead I feel im seeing the alt tags at few places for example, in step 1, 2 and 3 I could see only words, where I believe images are present. Please check it from your side for once.
    Thankyou.

  10. Hi Anil, great tips.

    Another tip I got here is to include using LSI keywords in the article. It also increases the chances of your blog results getting picked up by Google. The moment Google understands your content completely, it features your site in the knowledge graph.

    I also heard that the branded anchor backlinks help a lot, though not tested it.

    I didn’t know about that code to prevent snippets on your page!

    Best,
    Akshay~

  11. Hi Anil,
    I think these snippets are highly clickable. Since they also take most of the space on the front page of Google, a blog which features tends to get a hell lot of more traffic. I suppose the points you have mentioned here like writing in smaller paragraphs and using tables and lists to answer the questions which readers could be asking can make all the difference. I will definitely be incorporating these tips in the next piece I write on my blog.
    Thanks for sharing this.
    Regards
    Vineet Saxena

    • Hi vineet, exactly. The more clicks you generate from search, the better rankings you’ll get and you’ll also easily increase your chances of getting featured snippets for such stuff.

  12. Hyma says:

    Hi Anil, thanks for this wonderful article. I was always very curious about how Google get featured snippets. I’ll definitely try this tips while creating the content. Thanks for sharing this article.

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