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Everyone wants to be on the first page of Google’s search engine results page (SERP) but what that means is more confusing today than ever. Do you want to be number one in the organic section of the first page? Do you want to be number one in the ads section of the first page? Do you want to be number one for the local results that show up on the first page? Do you want to show up in a position zero widget box?

Google’s SERP is no longer just organic and paid positions. There are a lot of components to the SERP and we’re going to cover some of the more popular ones in this post.

Position Zero

This is the featured snippet block at the very top of the SERP. Google tells us that a featured snippet block may show up at the top of the SERP when someone asks a question in Google. The featured snippet block will then include the answer to the question. The answer will be content that is on a website that Google has determined to be the best resource to answer the question that the user asked. In addition to the answer, there will also be a link back to the website page that the answer came from.

Should you work to get your content listed in a featured snippet? Yes! There are a couple of reasons that you will want to target this SERP feature.

Local Knowledge Panel

The knowledge panel shows up on the SERP when someone searches for a business. The knowledge panel is really useful for local businesses when people do a search for your brand or business name. The knowledge panel can contain a lot of information, but it’s up to you to optimize your business for the knowledge panels to get that information. Some of the most used features of the knowledge panel are:

There are a lot more areas that you can optimize your business for the knowledge panel but these will be the most important.


Site Links

Site links is basically an extended snippet that you can optimize for that includes direct links to certain pages within your website. All of the links in this snippet have to be under one domain and it typically shows up when someone searches for your company or brand. The beauty to the Site Links snippet is that you are able to drive the searcher directly to the area of your site that they’re going to be most interested in.

There are a couple of benefits that you’ll get from optimizing for site links.

Local Pack

The local 3-Pack is a widget that returns the results of places and businesses that are close to the ssearcher’s geographic location. Even though there are more than 3 listings in the local snippet, there are only 3 that show up by default. This means that these 3 listings represent highly important listing spots for local businesses and optimizing your business to show up in these spots could have a large impact on your business.

Any time that Google determines a search has ‘local intent’, it will show a Local 3-Pack at the top of the results page. That means if your business focuses primarily on a local geography (i.e. retail stores) then, if you’ve optimized for it, when someone searches on your product or service and they are in your area, or if they use your area in the search, then you have an opportunity to show up in this local search snippet.

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