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Google Expands Featured Snippet

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Google Expands Featured Snippet

Google appears to have expanded its Featured Snippets to include Google Suggest navigational buttons. This function was previously announced in January. When a user enters a vague search query for which there are more nuanced variations, the featured snippets will now show navigational “chiclets” style buttons that help users navigate to a more specific response. This kind of featured snippets appears to be appearing in more searches.

Featured Snippets with Google Suggest Buttons

The navigational buttons appear to be an extension of the Google Suggest feature. It’s like having search suggestions in a navigational element.

Take a look this search result for the phrase, how to zip a file

Google Suggest style navigation in Featured SnippetsThis is a search for the phrase, how to zip a file. Google shows more precise suggestions to help users navigate to another search result.

As you can see, there are Google Suggest buttons that clarify the search for how to zip a file on a Mac, in Linux, on Windows and so on.

Here is another example, How to Catch Trout

When searching on Google for How to Catch Trout, you’ll get the traditional Google Suggest drop down menu:

Example of a traditional Google Suggest Drop down menuTraditional Google Suggest drop down menu for the phrase, How to Catch Trout.

But if search for how to catch trout, without engaging the suggestions in the drop down, Google provides the featured snippets with the Google Suggest navigational buttons.

Here is a screenshot of the new style of featured snippets:

Featured snippets featuring Google Suggest navigational buttons.Featured snippets featuring Google Suggest navigational buttons.

Official Announcement

As of this writing there is no official announcement.  However this change appears to be live on many searches, tested across multiple browsers. You can test it for yourself with the above queries or try your own queries that initially spawn a Google Suggest drop down.

Takeaway: Positive Impact on Search Traffic

The above search result did not previously feature navigational elements. With this update to the featured snippets, Google can now send traffic to sites that offer more precise information. That’s a win-win for users and websites with less generic content.

Hat tip to Leanna Kelly of CPCStrategy.com for noticing the feature and calling attention to it!

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Roger Montti

Roger Montti is an SEO consultant & web publisher with nearly 20 years experience. He offers Site Audits for ranking ... [Read full bio]

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