A new and very interesting study from RankRanger shows that when a site gains a featured snippet, you can rest assured that, on average, you will only share that featured snippet with one other competitor.

What it means. Let’s say you see one of your web pages come up in the Google featured snippets. That is great news, but now you are worried that Google won’t keep your page there and it is driving a lot of traffic that you don’t want to lose. This study shows that, on average, you will only share that featured snippet with one competing URL. And even when your URL is not shown, it is very likely that your URL will once again show up for that featured within a 30 and 90 day period. More specifically, over a 90-day period it will swap out on average 6.7 times but only between 2.4 unique URLs.

See for yourself. This chart below shows the change in behavior within a 30 and 90 day period between the unique number of URLs (the light blue bar) and the number of times within those time periods the URL will change (the dark bar):

One URL will show up more often. When you share the featured snippet with a competitor, there is most likely what they are calling a “dominant URL.” The dominant URL shows up 77 percent of the time over the 30-day period, while the alternate URL shows up only 23 percent of the time. So you do want to be the dominant URL here, but how you control that is unknown.

Why it matters. Features snippets have become more and more important for marketers and SEOs to focus on. They show up at the top of the search results, they are the voice responses for Google Assistant and they give off an impression of status for the website. Understanding how often Google changes the featured snippets can help you understand how easy or hard it is to gain a new featured snippet for a web site.

About The Author

Barry Schwartz is Search Engine Land’s News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on SEM topics.

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