How to protect your company’s site from zero-click searches?

Most businesses try to keep up with what search engines are doing in order to be able to reach users with their marketing. However, every once in a while Google tends to make major changes in how they deliver results to end-users. A couple of years ago, Google decided they didn’t simply want to be a middleman and point users to other sites. Instead, Google started to directly display answers from other websites on its search results pages. This obviously led to fewer external website visits, since certain questions were seemingly answered by Google itself. If you want to get users back to your website, you’ll need to learn how to protect your company’s site from zero-click searches.

What are zero-click searches?

Woman searching for answers on Google.
Some users only use Google to get quick answers to their questions.

A large number of online searches on Google don’t result in visits to other websites. This is due to the fact that the user receives all of the information they were looking for in the small snippet on Google’s results page. Google believes this to be beneficial for users and improves UX. While that may be true, this also benefits Google, since users will stay on its search pages instead of visiting other websites to get the answers they were looking for.

The business whose content is being offered in snippet form doesn’t get a page click, which is why they are called zero-click searches. This can be a problem for some companies who rely on their website as the means to sell their products or services to users. Although there is nothing wrong with answering user questions through snippets, at the end of the day, you are trying to sell your products.

Are zero-click searches bad for your business?

Unfortunately, the fact that you are featured in a snippet doesn’t guarantee you’ll get a click from users. However, there are still many benefits in case Google picks your website for ‘position zero’ when it is delivering search results. You will definitely get more visibility for your website, which is always good. Some users will still want to visit your pages to get more information on what they were searching for. Additionally, this means that your authority on the topic in question will improve in Google’s eyes.

However, if users don’t visit your page, you still won’t be able to appeal to them with a call to action or offer them your products. If your website visits have dropped, you can always take into consideration the appeal of PPC services New York, since that form of advertising avoids the zero-click problem. Try investing in forms of marketing that have a good ROI and where you will only pay if users actually click on the ads and go to your site.

Four ways to protect your company’s site from zero-click searches

#1: Focus on long-tail keywords

User doing complex long-tail keyword search.
Focus on delivering detailed information to the users who will click on your website.

Some people will want more information on the subjects they are looking up on Google. Optimizing your content for long-tail keywords will give you more clicks from users who know what they are searching for. In truth, while some people use Google in hopes of getting a simple answer, most people crave detailed information. And if users have a need for long-form content, why not give it to them? Although snippet results might not lead to a page visit, long-tail keywords usually do, so make sure to grab that portion of the userbase.

#2: Offer users a reason to visit your website

Your website represents an environment you can control, where you can select which information users will see on each page. Use this to your advantage by guiding website visitors to the info they need on each of your pages. Consult with digital marketing agencies in New York to apply traditional SEO and marketing techniques to draw more users to your pages. Redesign your website to make it intuitive and easy to use.

Navigation needs to be simple and mobile-friendly, and all the information clearly displayed. Use logically labeled hyperlinks to help guide users around, and place strong calls to action to land more conversions. Make your website the place to go when people need detailed information on the topics you specialize in.

#3: Interact with users outside your website

Person optimizing image for zero-click snippet
Optimize your content so it works with zero-click searches.

A great way to get around zero-click searches is to establish several different methods of interaction and communication with your users:

  • Build an app. You can build an app for your business to answer the needs of your users. Keep your customers tied to your software instead of Google’s search engine.
  • Emails and subscriptions. Ask users to sign up for your newsletter and establish that as their go-to source of relevant information.
  • Social networks. Most online users spend the majority of their time on social networks. Social media marketing NYC targets users who are already browsing social networks. Get around Google’s zero-click searches by building a large following on social media platforms.

#4: Don’t fight it and embrace zero-click searches

Instead of doing everything you can to avoid getting your content served up in snippet form, you can go with the flow and make the most of it. After all, position zero on SERPs is placed above the first ranked result, and the content is usually pulled from one of the results on the first page. Google even offers a guide on how to control your snippets in search results. Here are a few ways to optimize your website and embrace snippet delivered content:

  • Optimize your content. Use relevant images and keywords to get selected for featured snippet previews.
  • Make lists and tables. This is a snippet-friendly form of content. Include multiple lists and tables among your website pages in order to compete for the zero position.
  • Optimize your GMB. Fill out all of the information on your Google My Business page.
  • Answer questions and offer definitions. Snippets are typically used for answering simple user questions. Snippet results follow after ‘what’ or ‘how’ structured queries, so make sure you have an FAQ section on your site.
  • Videos. Create YouTube videos with indexed chapters and subtitles.

To summarize

We hope you have gained a deeper understanding of what featured snippets are, how you can benefit from them, as well as how to protect your company’s site from zero-click searches. However you choose to approach the topic of zero-click searches, it will surely involve website optimization. It might be time to rethink how you have been handling your SEO. And if you are unsure, then consider gaining the professional input of skilled New York SEO agencies.

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