Featured snippets have been expanded to provide users with more comprehensive search results.
Introduced in February 2018, multifaceted featured snippets are the latest innovation in a series of updates recently announced by Google. If you’re struggling to keep pace with all the changes, we can help you wrap your head around multifaceted featured snippets.
A featured snippet is the small section of text that appears at the top of SERPs. The content is extracted from a website, with the URL and the page title included in the snippet. By providing users with quick answers, featured snippets can help drive traffic and increase your website’s authority.
This is what a standard featured snippet looks like:
For a full lowdown on featured snippets and their value for SEO strategy, check out our article on How We Managed to Rank Position 0.
While featured snippets answer one query at a time, multifaceted featured snippets can answer several at once. They’ll appear in searches that are broad enough to be interpreted in different ways. Known as a ‘multi-intent’ query, these requests can be tricky for Google to interpret correctly.
To combat the inconvenience of having irrelevant search results crop up, multifaceted featured snippets allow several pieces of text to appear at the top of the SERP. Each of these snippets will be based on a different understanding of the query, so users can find the answer they’re looking for without rewording their search.
When Google announced multifaceted featured snippets, they included several examples of queries that could trigger the appearance of more than one featured snippet. One of these examples included “tooth pain after filling”. This query could be interpreted in two ways:
The differences between these queries may be subtle, but they’re still significant enough to influence search results.
Google also used “garden needs full sun?” as an example of a query that would generate a multifaceted featured snippet. Here’s what the multifaceted snippet for that query actually looks like:
By answering two questions at once, this multifaceted featured snippet provides users with more information than a standard featured snippet would.
Multifaceted featured snippets will be made available on mobile first, with desktop set to follow suit in the coming months. It won’t be possible to gauge their impact until they become more widely available, but don’t be surprised if you start spotting them in the wild soon.
The key takeaway here is that multifaceted featured snippets show how far Google has come in its ability to interpret intent. By considering Google’s growing intelligence when creating your own SEO strategy, you should be able to take advantage of innovations like the multifaceted featured snippet.
Feature image editorial credit: Twin Design / Shutterstock.com