How My Blog Post Got A Featured Snippet on Google (And Ranked No. 1)


It’s on every mom blogger’s mind lately. Here’s the thing:

How My Blog Post Got a Featured Snippet In Google (And Ranked #1) Plus a FREE checklist to rank in Google

You’ve been blogging for a few months now and by this time, you should see some progress with your posts ranking on Google. I heard somewhere to give your blog at least six months (sometimes sooner) to start seeing your posts in Google (like within the first or second page).

I’m still in the beginning stages of optimizing my site for Google traffic. Right now, it’s completely optimized for Pinterest traffic. I’ve created Pinnable images, optimized my Pinterest profile and I’ve Pintified my blog!

So, now I’m working on getting my Twins Mommy posts on the first page of Google. And I’m shocked by it all!

Now, I don’t know what people are searching for, but I can take a gander at common questions or keywords.

For example, my post on optimizing your blog for email subscribers is #1 (I’m above Kissmetrics of all things! Cray-cray). I searched for, “how do I optimize my blog for email subscribers.”


So, I know people may not use that exact phrase, but if they do, I’m there!

Another post I have on free girly stock photos is actually #1 in Google for the phrase, “free styled stock photos.”


Not bad eh?

Before we dive into featured snippets, I have this checklist to help you rank in Google.

What the Heck is a Featured Snippet?

Exactly, right? I had no idea either until I learned that one of my posts on my freelance writing blog was displayed as a featured snippet.

From my research, it looks like Google is trying to find ways to present information in a better and organized way. These featured snippets are used when people ask a question in the Google search box.

For example, if I search for, “how to bake a cake” I get a featured snippet of the instructions on how to make a vanilla pound cake.


That’s cool eh? And, you don’t even have to be the first result to get a featured snippet, but usually featured snippets are the first result (after the snippet).

But, wait a minute – wouldn’t that deter people from actually clicking to your blog post? I mean, they have the important information right there on the search result page.

Well, that’s not the case. Here’s what Hubspot says,

I found that the CTR to the HubSpot website for high volume keywords increased by over 114%, even when we ranked #1.

*CTR means click-through-rate. Essentially, it’s the percent people are actually clicking through to my post from the featured snippet. According to Hubspot, their rate increased by over 114%!

So, even if you do end up ranking #1 in Google (like I have for some Twins Mommy posts), if you have a featured snippet, you’ll have a higher click-through rate, which means more traffic to your site.

My Featured Snippet

Recently a new course member for my freelance writing course told me that she found my blog on Google. I asked her what did she search for and she told me, “find freelance writing job.”

So, I did some investigating and typed that into Google and was ah-mah-zed by what I saw:


My post on 20 ways to find a freelance writing job is #1 with a featured snippet! Wha-what? How did that happen?

While there are some technical ways like using a H2 tag for your search query in your blog post to increase your chances of having a featured snippet, here is what I did to get that post ranked in Google as a featured snippet.

1. Solve a Problem

For bloggers who want more traffic and subscribers, your blog posts should help your target audience. You should be solving problems your audience has when you create a blog post.

Now, not every post has to fulfill that need, but wouldn’t it be great if your blog could help so many people? That’s why I love visiting sites like Melyssa Griffin or Wonderlass or Caitlin Bacher. All these power women have hella good content because they pin-pointed problems their audience has.

Over on my freelance writing blog, I try to write posts that new freelance writers might have problems with:
Hit a Dead-End With Your Freelance Writing Business? Here’s What to Do
7 Ways to Maximize Your Time as a Freelance Writer

A lot of my posts center on finding jobs and improving your income. I wouldn’t get hung up on finding a keyword and building your post around that. I mean, maybe later on in your strategy, but for me, since I’m more into doing posts for my audience (and not for Google), I like what’s been happening.

Takeaway: create content around the problems your audience has. Listen to what people are saying in various Facebook groups and in your comments.

2. Make Your Content Shine

In order to get your post ranked on the first page or even as #1 in Google, make sure your content is better than what’s out there. This can be hard when you don’t know what’s out there. When I decided to write that post I knew I wanted it to be epic.

I researched what was already out there and a lot of the posts had less than 10 ways to find a freelance writing job. So I knew in order to get my post up there, I had to create more ways to find a freelance writing job. I settled on 20.

Here are some other ways to make your content better than what’s already out there:

    • Provide a clear answer to the question – does your post answer the question that you wrote about?
    • Provide more tips and examples – this goes along the lines of my post having 20 ways to find a writing job. If you provide more ways, tips, strategies, elements or examples, Google will notice it.
    • Put images in your post and stylize them – I knew since my 20 ways post was going to be epic I needed to have some epic visual content too. For big posts, create images for every sub heading and stylize them too. This shows Google that you put some time in this post.

You’re trying to make your post the definitive answer to a common problem. So, it better be filled with links to other resources and other posts that can help that reader find more information about their problem.

3. Reach out to other Bloggers in your niche

For a lot of my posts, I don’t ask other bloggers to share my post or to tell other people about my post.  I only do this if it’s a roundup mostly.

But, for this 20 ways post, since I had it in my mind it was going to be epic, I knew I had to reach out. My freelance writing blog isn’t that popular so even if I put that epic post on my blog, not many eyes would have seen it.

So, I reached out to popular freelance writers and past clients.  I also emailed the bloggers I mentioned or linked to their blog. This ensured that they would share it with their massive audience and help get this post seen.

4. Promote it on Social Media

One think I know, is to see traffic to your site, you need to promote the heck out of your posts on social media. This is where your audience hangs out every day!

When I wrote this post I wasn’t into Pinterest that much but I still created a pin for that post. I also made sure to share it on Twitter and on my Facebook page. But I did this all on my own. So for a while, I doubt it ranked in Google.

It wasn’t until I did the next thing that I think really helped it climb to the top of Google.

5. Schedule My Post with Tailwind

Tailwind has been a game changer for my blog. It really has. I’m able to schedule my pins and let them drip all day while I take care of my twins, do my house chores and write for my clients.

I started with pinning up to 50 pins a day – mostly my content and some of other people’s content. I then started scheduling over 100 and up to 200 pins in the summer (to account to the summer slump).

Now I’m at 100 pins and my followers are growing and my traffic is back up. And this is all because of using Tailwind.

I like to use the board lists which saves me a lot of time. I just click on one list and BOOM! My pin is scheduled to all those groups and boards!


Since I started scheduling my 20 ways post, I’ve gotten a lot of saves and re-saves. To count, that post is the most shared post on my entire Elna Cain blog.


Don’t forget to grab my checklist to help you rank in Google.

Write for Your Audience

The big takeaway here is to write for your audience. Don’t write a post because you have a great keyword. Whenever I sit down to create a blog post, I think about what my audience wants.

I might look at my Google Analytics to see which posts are the most popular. Or, I might look at my topic list for Twins Mommy and pick a post that’s relevant. Or, I might share an experience – like this post topic – and tell my audience about it.

Are you ready mamas to get featured? If you are tell me about it!

Leave a Reply


Hey Elna, Congrats on the Featured Snippet! I really like the way you put together your systems for your blog posts to help improve your ranking. Thanks so much for sharing them!Reply to Wendy
Hi Wendy, Thank you! Yeah, I’m learning more about SEO and ranking and it’s fun trying new strategies!Reply to Elna
Love these SEO tips! I have YOAST SEO plugin installed for my site and it helps me SOO much when publishing my posts to improve my SEO. One thing I never did was change my snippets. I will change that on all my old posts and current ones! Im sorta a non niche blogger. Although my posts about wordpress and helping others with monetization have been getting the most traffic, so im thinking of going in that direction with my blog. I plan on posting more posts about family and parenting , which is what I initially intended for my blog.Reply to Amy
Great post this was very informative. I never thought about Google Rich snippets before. Hopefully this will be a game changer thanks for the information.Reply to Brittany
Hi Brittany, You never know eh? I just was happy to know that my post on Elna Cain had one!Reply to Elna
Hey! This is awesome 🙂 I’m going to go ahead and do some more researched on the snippets! I would also suggest checking your SEO standings by using a private browser and clearing your cookies before checking. Excited to look around your blog some more!Reply to Maca
Hey Maca! Thanks for your tip!Reply to Elna
Oh, I love you, Elna!! Girl, you rock. This is genius!! Thank you so much for sharing this. 😀Reply to Ana
Hey Ana! Thanks so much! Glad you enjoyed the post 🙂 It’s people like you that put a smile on my face and make me realize I still have to keep blogging! It’s hard though, with two blogs and two kids that are twins!! yikes! 🙂Reply to Elna
Hi Elna, Awesome and congratulations on your featured snippet. Not to forget that article was EPIC in every manner. The tips you mentioned do help in getting snippets. My blogs have dozens of featured snippets for their queries and they are the key to traffic for me. Let’s not forget more featured snippets = more click-through-rates + more authority. I would also say that you don’t need to rank number one to get featured snippets, featured snippets can come from an article from the second page too. Most featured snippets are the result of you writing the post in a manner that answers, lists the steps of the process, or summarizes an event the query is about. These are the best way one can get more traffic, so I suggest everyone optimize their posts, directly answer the queries in their main keyword and probably use the main keyword or answer in a H2 tag once. I have a lot of tips that I know works for this, since I have a good number of featured snippets. I might write a blog post and share with you guys if you need. Elna, You’re doing a great job. Loving your tips. -SwadhinReply to Swadhin
Hey Swadhin, That’s good to know! Thanks so much for clarifying some things. SEO is still new to me. I mostly write for my audience and don’t actively search for a keyword when I write (which I know I should). But, it’s a learning process and it’s nice that I can write about my learning on this blog! YOU should write a post on that and share it in the private FB group we are in!Reply to Elna
Hi Elna, First off I want to let you know that you are doing a terrific job. It isn’t easy to manage so many things so wonderfully and still have a blog dedicated to moms (or people in common) and make them independent and confident about themselves and their business. SEO isn’t a small term too so none of us can say that we are well versed with it. You are perfect the way you are and the only reason I come to this blog is I get so much to learn from someone I admire. So kudos on that too! I just couldn’t control my emotion when I saw you discussing something from my niche and shared my findings till date. This by no means means that I know everything of it, there are tons of other blogs killing it with snippets like WordStream blog, Moz etc. Yes it is definitely nice that you are writing your process and in the same time you are educating so many of us (we all learn from each other, don’t we?). I came to know of many Pinterest and FB group tricks and resources only via your blog so at least for me you’re insanely talented and an educator! Yes that is on my mind too, maybe I will write it in sometime. Thanks Elna for making me feel welcome here and I am loving every bit of this site, though it is dedicated for moms there is always something to learn for everyone.Reply to Swadhin
Hey Elna, Congrats!! I used to think it takes a long time for bloggers to get ranked on Google, even a snippet. Maybe not. I totally agree with all your points. There is always so much to learn from your posts. Thank you for a great post!!Reply to Sireesha
Hi Sireesha! Love your blog woman! Thanks so much for coming over here. Yes, I thought the same way too that it takes a while to get ranked and/or a snippet. But, I mean within six months is usually the time when you see your posts on Google. Not necessarily #1, but it’s there in the SERPs!Reply to Elna
This is such a great post and congrats on your blog being featured! I am seriously so proud of you. I been following you for a few months now and it’s amazing to see your blog grow. I have yet to catch up but I am excited to be where you are soon.Reply to Vanessa
Hey Vanessa! Thanks so much. I’m happy that my freelance writing blog is picking up with SEO and even Twins Mommy! It’s awesome!Reply to Elna
Hi Elna, Great post, and congratulations for your Snippet !!!!! You deserve it so much. One great tool that you might like to add as a resource for your readers is : It allows you to find the most popular questions on a given topic. Oh, and here is another one. If you also want to find the most common Google Suggested questions, you can use Both tools are free!!!! Happy thanks giving.Reply to Jean-Christophe
Hey Jean-Christophe, Thanks for suggesting some great free tools!Reply to Elna
This is so great, thank you. I want a Google snippet! #newlifegoal 🙂Reply to Taughnee
Hey Taughnee! I know right? I was shocked. I’m sure it’s totally possible too! Just make your post the go-to post for a question.Reply to Elna
I LOVE that Google does this. Makes life so easy when you’re searching for a quick answer to something on your phone!Reply to Amanda
Hey Amanda, I know right! I love it too and I was shocked one of my posts got featured. Like my post is the go-to post for all new freelance writers! That’s awesome 🙂Reply to Elna
This is really cool, Elna! I have seen the featured snippets in Google many times, but didn’t even realize that is what they are called. And I had no idea how to get one. I am going to do a big list post soon anyways, but I think it just got bumped up in my editorial calendar!Reply to Kecia
Hey Kecia, Yeah, I’ve been seeing these featured snippets around too, but had no idea why they were there until my post was featured! So I dug and tried to find out why. Good luck girl on your epic list!Reply to Elna
Hey Elna, great work on the ranking 🙂 It’s a pretty epic post, definitely #1-worthy. Thanks for explaining the whole snippet thing. I’ve been vaguely aware of it for a while but I thought you had to install some kind of snippet plugin to get it to work. Nice to know you don’t have to do anything out of the ordinary (except, y’know, write something amazing.)Reply to Cath
Hey Cath! Yeah, there’s no installing for the snippet. Google just decides if your blog post is the best answer to the search query and for some, they display it as a feature snippet. Not sure why? But I took a good guess!Reply to Elna
I am constantly looking for new SEO tips and advice. Going to bookmark this for future reference, thanks!Reply to Kori
Hey Kori! Thanks so much! Good luck on getting ranked on Google for your blog posts! I have no idea what I’m doing, but it’s working 🙂Reply to Elna
Wow! These are some great results! I guess if you’re going to be ranked at the top of search engines your post really has to be epic. These are some awesome tips!Reply to Susan
Hey Susan! Thanks! I had no idea I was ranking in Google (at #1 for a long tail keyword) at all until I wrote this post. I was meaning to write it about my other blog. What a nice surprise! Yeah, your content should be pretty epic for Google to rank you! Good luck.Reply to Elna