Google is slowly but steadily becoming more of a portal. It is not just a search engine as we know it from the past. One of the changes which confirm this theory is the big increase in so-called zero-click searches and the higher usage of featured snippets.

So what are actually the zero click searches and why should you care?

Zero-click searches are the first results which appear on Google after you enter your question or a term. As it contains all the answers to your questions it does not need any further click. That’s why the name zero-click search.

Zero-click searches - Everything you need to know about the zero-click searches, position zero and featured snippets.

According to research conducted by Rand Fishkin at SparkToro, 48.96% of all the searches made in the U.S. in Q1 2019 were the zero-click ones.

This basically means, that almost half of the people who searched on Google found the answers to their questions without clicking to another website.

The negative impact of zero click searches on your traffic.

If you are a blogger or small business owner you should definitely put your attention to zero-click searches and featured snippets. And if you want to drive at least some traffic from organic search to your website (and have a higher CTR, click-through rate) you have to rethink and properly optimize your keyword strategy.

Relying only on your own judgment is not enough anymore. You have to get more effective and do proper keyword research.

The zero click search case study.

Here is an example of how the zero click search can negatively impact your traffic:

On the first print screen, you can see that once the term “how to cook spaghetti” is entered into the search bar a zero-click search result is shown.

And you just got all the answers without clicking on any other website. Pretty cool right? Yes, if you are the creator of that particular recipe. If your content is good enough, Google will feature you here. As a result, you are more likely to actually get clicks from it.

Zero-click searches - Everything you need to know about the zero-click searches, position zero and featured snippets.
Zero-click search / position zero

On the other hand, this is not so cool if you are a food blogger who just posted an article about the same topic and expects to get some traffic to it. But unfortunately, the position of your article is ranked lower on the first SERP page.

Zero click searches - Everything you need to know about the zero click search, position zero and great featured snippets. 1
All the other search results are listed below the zero-click search

Don’t take me wrong, ranking on the first page is still awesome but it might be not enough anymore.

So what you can do about it?

Aim for position zero with a featured snippet.

Position zero is also called featured snippet– it is the first position in a search query above all the other search results. Position zero is the new number one.

Featured snippet – featured snippets are special boxes where the format of regular listings is reversed, showing the descriptive snippet first. – Google

Featured snippets can be a paragraph (length between 40-60 words), lists, and table.

And how can you to get the position zero with a featured snippet?

According to Google you can’t as Google systems determine whether a page would make a good featured snippet for a user’s search request, and if so, elevates it.

Perhaps you cannot outsmart Google, but there are definitely some tips on how to optimize your content to get higher rankings.

Zero click searches - Everything you need to know about the zero click search, position zero and great featured snippets. 2

Tips to get position zero and rank higher on the SERP page.

  1. Optimize your keywords – check out the best blogging tools that could help you with this.
  2. Focus on CPS (click per search) – it’s not only total click volume
  3. Add FAQ to your blog posts – Frequently asked questions can be very good content for the featured snippets
  4. Write high-quality content – great quality can sometimes beat the big names.
  5. Write longer posts – a post with around 2 000 words is optimal.
  6. Boost your content on other media – sharing your content on social media channels or blogging platforms can increase your click-through. Remember to use features like the Instagram chat to engage with your followers.
  7. Use internal links – link to your other useful content
  8. Add alt-tags to your images – use alt-tags which are helpful, don’t overdo them.
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Zero click searches - Everything you need to know about the zero click search, position zero and great featured snippets. 3