Is your site a featured snippet? If so, the benefits you’ve been receiving from double-dipping within Google’s visibility may be coming to an end. This month, Google confirmed that they are testing dropping the featured snippet listing from the core listings. Until now, a site that was featured as snippet appeared both in the snippet position and again as one of the first ten core search listings below.
An example of a listing featured as a rich snippet and in the top 10 core listings:
What are Rich Snippets?
Rich Snippets is the structured data markup that is added to a site’s existing HTML that provides search engines with a better understanding of the content on each of site’s pages. However, over the last few years, Google has taken Rich Snippets a step further by using the marked-up content to enable users to find richer search results easily.
In a standard SERP, Google displays the title, meta-description, and URL you have created for the page. When Rich Snippets are set up, Google can show more information related to the query directly in the search results, typically in the first or zero position. Also, Rich Snippet results are typically used for voice search results in Google Assistant or Google Home.
Below is a graph from a study conducted by Stone Temple regarding the increase in featured Rich Snippets displaying in Google search results. The growth in the presence of Rich Snippet listings is a clear indicator of how important these are to Google. According to their survey, users also think that these results are relevant and useful. In fact, over 60% of the 1,000 users Stone Temple surveyed said that they wanted “More results that answer my question directly without my having to visit a website or another app.”
However, Google specifically said that this is just a test and not a permanent move. They announced this statement:
“We’re always experimenting with ways to create the best possible experience for our users but have nothing to announce at this time. Of course, the test could become permanent down the line. But at the moment, that’s not the case.“