What Is a Search Result Snippet and How Can You Influence What It Says?

Google uses your own content to create allowing you to influence what appears on the results page.

The search results that appear on Google generally consist of a clickable title followed by a description underneath. Google writes these descriptions and often uses snippets of text lifted from your webpage content. So, what exactly are snippets, and how can you influence them?

Google will create snippets from your web page content.

When the Google search engine finds your website, it will scan the content of your webpages (also known as indexing) so it has a copy of them. From these scans, the search engine will create the snippets it uses for the descriptions on the search engine results page (SERP).

The fact that Google uses your own content to create these snippets means you have a lot of influence on how Google will craft them. But just how do you write webpage content that will generate the snippets and, therefore, the SERP descriptions you want to appear?

How do you write content that Google will extact snippets from?

Google is looking for a sentence or short paragraph (ideally less than 160 characters) that effectively sums up what a particular page is all about. So, it is important to add this somewhere on the page. Generally, near the beginning is best but not vital. The main thing is to create compelling people-first content you can and ensure the description paragraph is included somewhere.

Of course, there is no guarantee Google will use your chosen paragraph or sentence as a snippet, but the more effort you put into it, the better the chance they will.