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What Happened to Google’s Coveted Position Zero?

Why Position Zero is No Longer a Thing

In digital marketing, search engine optimization (SEO) is a way to rank higher on a Google search. After all, how many of us explore past the first page? Marketers have to implement SEO tactics to get on that sought after first page.

In 2014, Google introduced a reward for those that have gained the number one organically ranked spot: the featured snippet. Besides being the first source a searcher comes across, there is another reason why this is a coveted spot; it created a position zero.

When you search on Google, the top ten organically ranked websites will appear on the first page. However, if you achieved the top rank, you were granted the featured snippet (position zero) and the number one spot. Take a look:

To resolve this situation from happening, Google has eliminated the ‘position zero’ while keeping the featured snippet. So, why did this happen, and what exactly does this mean for marketers?

Why Position Zero is No Longer a Thing

Google’s official tweet says, “If a web page listing is elevated into the feature snippet position, we no longer repeat it in the first page of results. This de-clutters the results & helps users locate relevant information more easily. Featured snippets count as one of the ten web page listings we show…”

Previously, there would technically be eleven results–the featured snippet (position zero), the repeated listing (position one), and the ranking results from two to ten. Now, take a look at how Google has made the featured snippet position one.

At first, many will still think being ranked number one and earning that featured snippet is the best place to be on a Google search list. However, there is a pretty significant downside.

Featured snippets can function in two ways. When a feature effectively answers the searcher’s question, they have no need to go to your website, and it can negatively impact your click rate. If it works as a tease, it will prompt the searcher to click on your website to get all of the information.

Google is regularly updating its ranking rules, and it may be overwhelming to keep up. Stay on top by getting in touch with the SEO experts at Kraus Marketing. We are fully equipped to work through Google’s zero position changes and increase your organic traffic.