Have you ever noticed that sometimes when you do a search on Google, a box will appear near the top of the search results containing a short, concise description or answer to your search query?
According to Google, "this featured snippet block includes a summary of the answer, extracted from a webpage, plus a link to the page, the page title and URL."
We helped get one of our SEO clients a featured snippet!
The above screenshot displays the search results for a keyword phrase of one of our clients, Modscape. A search for "eco friendly homes", for which they are currently ranked #1, will bring up this featured snippet from their site.
While the specific page it links to doesn't exactly define eco friendly homes, it does offer heaps of related content about sustainable house design principles. Also, the phrase "eco friendly homes" only appears once on that page, which just goes to show that there's no need for keyword stuffing or other black hat SEO tactics.
So how, then, did they land a Google Featured Snippet?
The short and honest answer is: we'll never know for sure. Like organic search rankings in general, it remains Google's little secret.
However, we can certainly speculate as to what lends a hand in being selected as a Google Featured Snippet.
The above screenshot is the content from which the featured snippet was sourced.
Putting short sentences or phrases in a list (i.e. using appropriate ul and li tags so that Google can read that it's in list format) seems to be a common trend between pages linked to in featured snippets. In the case of Modscape, our Melbourne SEO specialists ensured that content was formatted in list form whenever possible, so as to make content easier to read and absorb.
Bottom line, lists are easier for Google to parse and determine relevancy.
But inserting lists here and there throughout a site isn't quite enough to land a featured snippet. The list itself must relate to the search term, and the page itself must be optimised for that term.
With Modscape, we used the term "eco-friendly" in a h2 header tag, which is a subset of the "eco friendly homes" keyword phrase.
We also used "eco friendly homes" in content contained within the header of the page.
Lastly, we linked to this page frequently throughout the Modscape website. Internal links are super important when it comes to establishing credibility and authority. They let Google know that various pages of your website relate to a similar topic. Thus, the generous number of internal links to Modscape's sustainability page indicate that a healthy portion of their website relates to sustainability (and perhaps, in turn, eco friendly homes as well).