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Triggering Featured Snippets: good for traffic, but does it convert?

Following on from our recent blog where we discussed how voice search should affect your website content, a report by Statista found that 46% of voice searches in the US were done via Apple’s Siri. It’s clear that putting questions to our mobile devices is fast becoming the preferred way to find quick answers.

With the growing prevalence of mobile voice search in mind, SEMRush pioneered research into what triggers Featured Snippets to appear in Google’s mobile organic search. The study, which looked at 10 million keywords and those regularly appearing in Featured Snippets, revealed a pattern that can be adopted by those aiming for Position Zero.

The main takeaways?

  • Content should be short paragraphs that answer questions
  • 89% of questions lead to Featured Snippet paragraphs displaying
  • 94% of the snippets are taken from results that rank in the top five search results

A change in tide…

Over the last year, we’ve noticed a shift in direction as the industry, and those seeking advice from digital experts, become more aware of Featured Snippets, their influence, and how to reach Position Zero.

Having conducted in-house analysis into mobile voice search within our clients’ sectors, the findings from SEMRush helped to consolidate our own internal knowledge.

Snippets attract strong click through rates (CTR) and businesses targeting Featured Snippets for mobile will typically see an increase in CTR maximising their potential share of traffic.

…but it’s a way off shore

There’s still a way to go before we start to see refined voice search results that truly convert. At the moment it’s a useful tool for researching information such as popular holiday destinations or what the weather is like in the country you’d like to visit, but when it comes to the holiday booking process, we can’t yet reserve seats or book the hotel.

Likely to change over time as results improve and are refined enough to directly answer our queries, it could see people order, book or buy things via voice search, essentially making it transactional. It took a few years for mobile search to reach that point and it may take some time for voice to get to that stage.

For now, if you’re thinking of implementing a Featured Snippet-based approach to achieve Position Zero and drive traffic, it’s shouldn’t just be a feature of your strategy, it requires an active, tactical process involving a structured, well thought out and dedicated strategy.