How to Optimize Rich Snippets for Voice Search

More and more people use voice search to browse the internet, and this is a trend that’s going to keep growing over 2018. To keep your site ahead of the pack, optimize rich snippets to provide better answers to voice search. A few simple changes will put your site in poll position. Follow’s handy guide and get started now!

What are rich snippets?

A snippet is a snapshot of a webpage show in search engine results. It can be as simple as the title and opening line. If you’re savvy, you already write your own snippets. This can be done using simple plugins like Yoast SEO, and lets you control what people see in your site’s preview. Rich snippets go a step further. They include additional information such as business location, contact details, opening hours, reviews, and more.

How do they work?

Rich snippets get their information using Schema markups. This is simple HTML that tells a search engine exactly what information they’re accessing. You can always include your information without employing Schema, but you run the risk of search engines missing or misinterpreting it.

There are Schema markups for almost every type of information, from contact details to prescription drug classes. Run a recipe site? There are markups to include reviews, ratings, calories, cooking times and more in your rich snippets.

rich snippet recipe website google

The first result in the above example is a standard snippet, showing the page title, address, and a one-line description. The second example employs rich snippets to include a more detailed description, as well as ratings, reviews, cooking time, and calories. This gives the user far more information at-a-glance. Rich snippets have dual usefulness. They not only encourage more people to visit the webpage, they also attract the right people, reducing the site’s bounce rate.

How do rich snippets help voice searches?

When people make voice searches the answer is usually read aloud, either by mobile assistants such as Siri and Cortana, or in-home smart speakers such as Google Home or Amazon Echo. Long webpages don’t provide optimal answers. Instead, rich snippets can provide the information people are searching for without having to read your whole site. When somebody searches for your business opening hours or directions to your store, the information has already been provided to search engines through Schema for voice responses to read.

Google featured snippets

The next step up from rich snippets is to get a coveted Google featured snippet spot. These are the boxes that appear at the very top of Google results when you search the answer to a specific question. For example, “What’s the largest species of whale?”

google featured snippets

Getting a featured snippet means your site will always be presented top of Google search results for that question. Featured snippets are extremely coveted for that reason. Getting one can be tricky, but look at common questions in your field. If you can provide a clear, definitive answer, you could get to the top of Google every time.


While featured snippets are the holy grail of Google SEO, you can imitate their usefulness using rich snippets. As voice searches increase in popularity, providing critical information about your business in the briefest possible way will become increasingly valuable to boosting your business. Get ahead of the curve by starting now.

Not sure how to start? Pick a plan today and let’s friendly experts guide you.

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