What Are Zero-Click Searches And How Do They Affect Your Business?
Google frequently makes changes to its algorithm. The focus is on ensuring that users get the best and most relevant digital experiences. So regardless of how big or small the updates and changes are, the internet Giant aims to ensure that the searchers get the information they need quickly.
To allow users to access information quickly and enhance the search results, Google introduced zero-click searches at the start of 2020. Like all other algorithmic changes, small and medium businesses with websites had to sit up and take notice. Every company that wants to increase traffic to its website has to focus on Search Engine Optimisation.
Previously, online marketing geared towards making sure that your business website has the ideal mix of keywords to show up at the top of the SERPs. However, the zero-click algorithm changes have significantly reduced the need for searchers to click through, reducing the click-through-rate for websites by a whopping 49%.
Exactly What Are Google Zero Click-Searches?
Zero-click searches are essentially the search results that feature at the top of the first SERP (search engine results page). They answer queries quickly in-search, which means that users can find the information they need without clicking any further. The internet giant introduced this change on 13 March 2020. This update aimed to eliminate the possibility of multiple results that users don’t require and satisfy searcher intent faster.
In simple words, when users are searching for some information online, they would get many results that did not answer their questions. It meant they ended up making more clicks than necessary to find what they were looking for. The launch of zero-click searches has changed this. For example, if you type a phrase like “digital marketing” on Google, the search engine will assume that you want to know what this is.
So, on the search results page, the definition of digital marketing would be placed in a featured snippet right at the top, making it easy for users to access necessary information about digital marketing. However, if you enter something more specific like “Tips for Digital Marketing”, Google will then provide its zero-click search result, which includes a list of tips.
Featured Snippets – The Different Types
Featured snippets show up in these primary types:
- Paragraph – This is the most standard type of featured snippet. It includes a box with an answer with or without images.
- List – This appears when the answer that Google provides is in the form of a list.
- Video – The answer appears in the form of a video snippet.
- Table – Your answer will appear in table form.
Google Features That Are Impacting CTR For Businesses
Here is a closer look at the user-friendly search options that Google has added as part of its zero-click search update:
These boxes are a quick and straightforward way for users to find the answers that they are looking for, without having to click through to any source pages. Whether you are looking for a product description or answers to trivia questions, you would be able to find a short response to your query using the drop-down answer boxes which are very handy. While you can click through to source pages for more information, the summary will include a sufficient amount of information. This makes clicking to the original site unnecessary, reducing the traffic to those sites.
Products & Services
At the outset, online users would search Google for the products they wanted, and be directed to websites which mention those specific search terms – this is how Search Engine Optimisation started. Even now, a search still pulls up all the most relevant results depending on the Internet giants advanced search engine algorithm. What has changed is the panel that shows up at the top of the search page, which offers a quick price comparison of services and products related to that particular search description.
A consumer can just follow the link to get the entire listing while being on Google site. This function is far more user-friendly for users than having to click through multiple websites for detailed pricing and information. However, this keeps users on Google, costing businesses a significant amount of traffic.
Zero-click searches don’t always mean zero opportunity. The primary goal of this function is to increase exposure and generate awareness which becomes an excellent opportunity for businesses to build credibility and similarity among online audiences.
Now that Google Wallet has been introduced, it means that customers can find the services and products in need without having to visit the business site and they can also purchase these directly. Since customers can buy the items through Google, it means that they do not need to visit the site at all. When there are fewer hits, it means that the company that is doing the selling makes less money, and they become nothing more than a provider of services and goods to Google rather than to customers.
How You Can Adjust Your Marketing Strategies?
Since Google has found significant success with making these changes, it means that they aren’t likely to alter the approach anytime soon. In fact, their BERT algorithm, which is pending, makes it possible that zero-click searches will become even more common. What it means for small and medium businesses is that they need to alter their marketing approach and strategies if they want to continue using search engines like Google to their benefit.
Making these changes and evolving along with the algorithmic changes that Google makes, is all about focusing on the details. Rather than prioritising overall search rankings, focus on your target audience and consider how you can make long-tail searches that are geared towards making that search metric more relevant.
If you tailor your website to your audiences, it might harm your visibility on Google. However, you may end up seeing more hits from target audiences. Also, it might be a good idea to opt for paid ads on Google which will direct more customers to your website. These ads show up at the top of all SERPs, which means you are far less likely to get side-lined in the shuffle.
Optimising for Google’s zero-click Searches
Every business has different goals such as building credibility, increasing website traffic or generating brand awareness. Regardless of what your goal is, it can benefit you to rank higher on featured snippets. Here are some tips that can help you reach that zero-click position on Google search.
1. Focus on Creating Question-Type Search Queries
When you conduct extensive keyword research, it helps you select the right question based on who it was and determine which words will appear in featured snippets. It would be best if you also focused on the questions that your audiences are asking. Try to answer their why’s, how’s, who’s and when’s. You can use tools such as KWFinder or Twinword to get wide-ranging suggestions.
2. Create High-Quality, Relevant Content
For your content to rank on the zero click search result, it needs to be information-rich, valuable and well researched. When Google finds your content to be relevant, it will also help you rank in that search result.
3. The Structure Is Important
How you structure all your content can affect whether your web pages can rank on a specific featured snippet. Always use header tags as these allow Google to index your content easily. Divide the content into points and paragraphs; structuring it in this way makes it easily readable.
4. Use Stats And Facts
Any content that includes relevant facts and numbers will be far more valuable to Google’s eyes. It’s why you should start with using statistics, graphics and comparison charts and focus on the facts.
5. Include Images
If your paragraph featured snippet has images that can make it quite eye-catching. It’s why Google tends to opt for content that is rich in visuals. Not only do images break the monotony of chunks of text, but it also helps to keep users engaged. However, make sure that you use high-quality relevant images with descriptive alt-text.
6. Always Be Concise
Google is partial to long-form content. However, you can get to the position zero-click rank only if you are specific and concise in what you are saying. It doesn’t mean you need to write short pieces of content. However, you must break the information into paragraphs of approximately 45 words which are meaningful and valuable to the readers.
7. Make Sure you Have an FAQ section
Since Google ranks question-based keywords in snippets, it can benefit you to have an FAQ page on your business website. Targeting specific audiences is all about adjusting target mechanisms, narrowing your focus, analysing your metrics and making changes in tandem with the current online marketing landscape.
For custom web design services as well as template sites, CRM automation, and results-driven digital marketing strategies, contact Digital Canteen on 02-9025-4304. Discuss all your project details, and our team will get your project started as per your requirements.
Thanks for reading,
Digital Canteen Team