Over the years, Google has evolved from being a directory of web pages to a one-stop shop for internet searches. Nowadays, a search results page could contain anything from business listings and reviews to questions and answers, how-to guides, lists, recipes, maps, products, news articles and more.
With this in mind, it makes sense that more online searchers now find what they’re looking for as soon as they land on a results page, without having to click anywhere else. In fact, in 2020, nearly 65% of Google searches ended without a click to other web content.
This is what’s known as ‘zero-click searches’.
Why do zero-click searches matter?
Zero-click searches have been on the rise for years, but they now account for the majority of Google searches. This means it’s no longer safe to assume potential customers will click on your website, even if one of your web pages pops up in Google search results.
What’s more, as Google continues to improve and refine the search experience for users, zero-click searches are likely to grow. Reviewing your SEO strategy now to factor in the zero-click landscape could be what it takes to get ahead of the competition.
How to adapt your SEO strategy for zero-click searches
So, what can you do to help improve your business’ visibility in Google, even if people aren’t clicking through to your website?
Optimise your website content for featured snippets
Featured snippets are blocks of text or visual elements that appear at the top of Google’s search results above the list of web pages. Here’s an example:
Types of featured snippets include:
- Short paragraphs
Featured snippets are designed to answer a user’s query without them needing to click anywhere else. For example, searching for ‘how to unblock a drain’ might bring up a featured snippet with a video tutorial, a step-by-step list or a block of helpful text.
Fortunately, you don’t have to be a tech wiz to optimise your website content for featured snippets. Think about the types of questions your customers are asking and the information they’re searching for. Free tools like keyword.io and AnswerThePublic are useful for coming up with ideas here.
From there, consider how you can use those queries to publish useful content on your website such as:
Keep in mind that featured snippets appear as short paragraphs, lists, tables and videos – so use these formats as often as possible, and don’t forget to include relevant keywords and common queries.
Update your Google My Business (GMB) listing
With the rapid rise of zero-click searches, your Google My Business (GMB) listing could be the first (and only) impression customers get of your business. Make sure to claim your GMB listing if you haven’t done so already, and update it with as much information about your business as possible. Your contact details are especially important here, as users can get directions or contact you directly from your listing.