8 Google SERP Features to Improve Your Rankings in 2020

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Search engine results page (SERP) features are results displayed to reveal more context to search users. Google SERP features provide relevant information to help those users find answers in less time.

Google has been developing many of these SERP features to improve user experience. They often differ depending on the search query and the information they provide.

In this article, we’ll share with you the most essential Google SERP features for businesses in 2020.

We’ll also show you how you can optimize for each of those features and outrank your competition.

Let’s jump right in.

1- Featured Snippets

A featured snippet pulls information from a webpage and displays it at the top of the SERPs.  It’s one of the best SERP features to focus on to grow your business. 

Featured snippets are guaranteed to get the highest click-through-rate and therefore drive more traffic.

Featured snippets are one of the more popular Google SERP features.
Featured snippets are one of the more popular Google SERP features.

The information Google shows to each user differs based on the search context. 

For example, it can be a paragraph, a list, an image, or even a table.

How to optimize for “Featured Snippets”

To create featured snippets, you need to structure your data using schema markup. 

Schema markup is a coding language that helps Google understand the structure of web pages. It allows crawling spiders to pull the necessary data to serve better search results.

You can learn the rest of the steps at Schema.org.

2- Local Pack

Local pack (Map Pack) includes three local businesses displayed below Google Maps. Google shows there results to local customers when they search for related services.

For example: “plumbers near me.”

This is an excellent option for brick-and-mortar businesses looking to attract local customers with high commercial intent.

Map 3-Pack is a popular Google SERP feature for local businesses
Map 3-Pack is a popular Google SERP feature for local businesses

This snippet provides everything the user needs to know about the business. The pack includes information such as name, location, reviews, and phone number. 

How to optimize for “Local Pack”

To get your business on the local pack, you need to register a Google My Business (GMB) account and verify it. 

Once done, make sure to optimize your GMB profile with the necessary information. 

After that, you need to get your business listed on popular business listing directories. Some of the most important ones are Facebook, Yelp, Manta, and Foursquare.

3- Google Ads

Doing SEO may take a lot of time and hard work. And that makes it hard for most businesses to find quality clients and continue their growth.

Google Ads is the solution

The program offers great value to any advertiser looking to attract more customers. And unlike other advertising platforms, Google drives highly targeted traffic that has a higher chance of converting.

Google Ads is the most prominent SERP feature
Google Ads is the most prominent SERP feature

Displaying ads on Google SERPs isn’t free. But, it drives amazing results to lots of companies — especially if they’re at the beginning of the journey.

4- Rich Snippets

Rich snippets come with additional information in the SERPs — which allows your results to stand out.

This feature drives more qualified traffic to your website. 

You can inform users about a product’s availability, price, ratings, and description. That way, they wouldn’t have to click on your website and check the offering.

It may seem like you’ll lose traffic by not getting potential buyers to click on your website. Yet, this feature will drive you more qualified traffic. 

That’s because these results are more attractive compared to typical SERP displays. They’ll make your business seems more genuine and save potential customers time.

How to optimize for “Rich Snippets”

You can create rich snippets the same way you do for featured snippets. Use schema markup to structure your data and help Google pull relevant information more efficiently.

5- Image Pack

There are many times where a query has to be answered in a photo format. And that requires the display of relevant images to search users. 

That’s why you need to optimize images on your website to appear to your potential customer. 

It’s also a great way to draw attention to your content and drive more visitors to your website. 

How to optimize your images for Google Image search

  • Use descriptive file names and use keywords while avoiding filler words. Then insert hyphens to separate different words. For example: “google-ranking-serp-features.png.”
  • Use alt tags to describe your image shortly — but avoid writing longs texts and stuffing keywords.
  • Reduce your images to smaller file sizes, but make sure to maintain an optimal resolution for SEO.

6- People Also Ask

People Also Ask is a section that appears in the middle of the SERPs. It gives users more options for what answers they can find and expand on their initial search query. 

The questions in the list are semantically related to the first search query. 

How to Optimize for “People Also Ask”

To get your content to appear in this snippet, you need to reverse engineer the content creation process. 

This simple process will allow Google to understand your content structure more. It will pull answers from your website when a user asks a question — which drives you more traffic.

First, start with the main question in mind and search for it on Google. 

Then, generate a list of related questions that you can then use as latent semantic index (LSI) keywords. (To generate more questions, click on another query from the list. With each click, Google will show you more related questions.)

After that, break your article and paragraphs into smaller sections. You can then use those questions as headings and subheadings. 

7- Knowledge Panel

This panel is displayed on the right of the results page. And it pulls information from Google My Business profiles or Google Maps.

The knowledge panel helps local customers find specific information about nearby businesses. 

How to optimize for “Knowledge Panel”

Like the local pack, optimizing for this feature requires an updated GMB profile. Make sure to add images and ask your satisfied customers to leave reviews about your service.

Also, you need to get your business on business directories with accurate information. 

8- Knowledge Graph

Like the local pack, optimizing for this feature requires an updated GMB profile. Make sure to add images and ask your satisfied customers to leave reviews about your service.

Also, you need to get your business on business directories with accurate information.

This snippet gives users the information they need without having to click on a website. 

So, it may not be the most beneficial snippet if you’re looking to attract more customers to your website. 

To get your business featured, you need to verify your social media pages. Then, use organizational schema markup to help Google pull the data. Once finished, you have to submit your link to Wikidata and get approved.

Wrapping It Up

Boosting your traffic is no longer only about the traditional SEO practices. Google is always working on improving its user experience. And with that come new search features and updates.

If you still haven’t started optimizing your content for these 8 Google SERP features, you’re missing out on some great opportunities for growth. 

It’s time to get going!

Ready to optimize your content for these Google SERP features, but still not sure where to start? Contact us or give us a call at (949) 354-2574. 

Looking forward to helping your business grow.

    Jeramy Gordon is the founder and Chief Content Officer at the Lorem Ipsum Company. He has been creating successful content strategies for almost two decades and believes in the power of high-quality content. He lives in Orange County, California, with his wife and two children.

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