9 Tips for Ranking in Google’s Featured Snippets


rank google featured snippets
Obtaining traffic from Google means that you’ve got to keep up with all of Google’s features all of the time.

If you haven’t noticed, Google constantly changes their features.

And you’ve got to know exactly how they work so that you can rank for them.

You also have to keep an eye on competitors.

Google results are now full of so much more than just plain links. Featured snippets are the first thing that most people see when searching for a word or phrase.

They’re also becoming more and more popular each year. Just look at how many posts had featured snippets in 2016 compared to 2014:

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It’s a huge difference, right? But why are they so popular?

It’s because they give answers to the questions people are searching for in a way that’s convenient, quick, and easy to read. You don’t have to click through anything to find what you’re looking for.

They aren’t just helpful for the average person though. Featured snippets give marketers a chance to beat competitors, boost conversions, and drive traffic right to their site.

HubSpot research has shown that content with a featured snippet gets a 2X higher click-through rate.

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Those results are huge.

But what exactly are Google featured snippets? And how can you optimize your content to rank for them?

What is a Google featured snippet?

Whether you know it or not, you’ve probably seen countless featured snippets from Google when searching for information or answers to your questions.

We often refer to the position that featured snippets give to content as “position zero.”

This is because featured snippets take up the most space on a search results page. They’re usually at the very top of the page, too.

For instance, say that you’re searching for “How to lay tile.”

Google will answer your question with a snippet containing information about your question above all of the other links on the search results.

Google usually pulls them right from the content that’s already ranking on page one, but it can also pull from lower ranking SERPs.

These featured snippets make finding answers easier than ever before because you don’t have to click anything to view the information.

Here’s an example of what featured snippets look like:

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They can contain numbered lists, bullet points, and more. They can answer your search questions with a brief paragraph, too.

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Ranking for a featured snippet is so much more helpful and effective for driving visitors to your site than ranking for #1.

Just look at how much space a featured snippet takes up!

They dominate the SERPs, give you tons of exposure, and keep your website far above the fold. Plus, they’ll boost your company’s credibility quicker than any other method.

And you don’t necessarily have to pay any extra advertising fees to rank for them.

You don’t have to be number one in your industry, either.

Any company, regardless of its size or budget, can earn a spot at position zero if they play their cards right.

But there’s no exact formula for earning a featured snippet. And if you earn a position zero spot, it might not last forever if Google decides that another page is better suited to rank for it.

The easiest way to earn a featured snippet spot is to produce quality content and format it in a way that Google will love.

You have to make your content “snippable” so that Google will recognize your link. If you’ve already got some links with high rankings, you’re in luck.

According to Ahrefs, 99.58% of featured snippet pages already rank in the top 10 SERPs in Google for a particular search query.

That’s why you’ve got a good chance of earning featured snippets for search queries that you’ve already achieved high ranking spots with.

However, Getstat says that 70% of snippets come from sites that aren’t in the top-ranking organic position.

So if you aren’t ranking high, don’t worry. You’ve still got a chance to rank for featured snippets.

If your brand focuses on DIY, health, or finance, your chances of getting featured are higher than if you publish content in other industries.

An Ahrefs study found that search queries with the following words have a better chance of getting featured:

  1. Recipe
  2. Best
  3. Vs.
  4. Make
  5. Definition

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Now let’s go over the different types of featured snippets.

Types of featured snippets

There are three major types of featured snippets:

  • Paragraph
  • List
  • Table

When it comes to paragraph style featured snippets, Google gives an answer to the searcher in text rather than a list. There may also be an image that accompanies the text, like this:

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List style featured snippets show an answer in list format. Here’s what list snippets look like:

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Table snippets provide answers in the form of — you guessed it — tables. They usually look something like this:

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According to Getstat, the most popular type of featured snippet is the “paragraph” type.

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The first thing you should do when trying to rank for Google’s featured snippets is to determine which featured snippets your competitors are ranking for.

Tip #1: Use SEMrush to find competitors’ snippets

SEMrush is a great analytics resource, but did you know that you can also use the tool to find featured snippets?

You can use it to find out which featured snippets your competitors have earned as well as find out which featured snippets you’re already ranking for.

All you’ve got to do is run a regular domain search and click “Organic Research.”

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Then, just click on the “Featured Snippet” on the bottom right-hand side of the page.

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You can even filter keywords by clicking on the “Advanced Filters” option to include featured snippets.

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Then, once you know which snippets your competitors are earning, you can optimize your content for the same exact words and topics.

When checking out your own snippets, be sure to keep an eye out for variations of other keywords that you could rank for as well.

But SEMrush isn’t the only resource for finding featured snippets. Google is a great resource, too.

Tip #2: Use Google to uncover snippet opportunities

One of the best ways to find snippets that you can optimize content for is to think like your audience.

What questions are people actually trying to find answers for?

For instance, put yourself in the shoes of someone who is new to marketing and may not understand some common terms.

There are a whole lot of terms and acronyms in the marketing world that can be intimidating and confusing to people who aren’t familiar with them.

Do a short search, such as “What is a CTA in marketing?

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For this search query, there’s a featured snippet in the form of a paragraph.

For the term you look for, the snippet might contain a list or a series of steps. And who knows — the featured content might already be yours.

If it isn’t, check out ideas under the “People also ask” section.

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These are questions related to the search you already entered. To look at snippets for each search query, just expand the phrase by clicking the arrows on the right.

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Then, you can read through the full snippet for each related question.

This is a quick way to identify competitors and content ideas in one easy step. Now, you can steal their snippet with a bit of time and effort.

You can also identify some questions by using a site like Answer the Public.

Tip #3: Find content ideas on Answer the Public

Since questions are most likely to bring up featured snippets, you’ve got to answer how, what, when, where, why, or who.

The best place to find out the types of questions people might be asking about a particular topic is Answer the Public.

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Let’s say you want to learn more about apple pie.

Just type it in and you’ll receive tons of suggestions for questions related to the topic that you can answer with your content.

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Then, pick which angle you want to take. If you want to answer questions that address the “what,” just focus on that section.

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Then, pick a question to answer from that group. It’s that simple!

Keep in mind that you may want to do some keyword research before you do this to make sure the words you’re searching are SEO friendly.

Tip #4: Do keyword research

It’s time for some good old keyword research.

You should already be doing it. But you can optimize your keyword research to help you get featured snippets, too.

It’s a good idea to use a tool or two to find out if a search query will bring up featured results or not.

I like Serpstat because it allows me to easily see which keywords bring up featured snippets on the results page.

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Now that’s pretty neat, right?

Just type in a domain, keyword, or link, and hover over each result to see if featured snippets come up for each.

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This is awesome for uncovering which featured snippets your competitors are currently ranking for.

Plus, if you already rank high for a particular keyword, it’s worth finding out if Google currently brings up featured snippets for those keywords.

If they do, try to rank for it by identifying (and answering) the questions that people have about that topic.

Then, just format your content to include tags that relate to those questions.

It’s also important to answer more than one question in each of your articles.

Tip #5: Answer multiple questions

Do you remember the Ahrefs study from earlier?

Well, it also uncovered that once a page earns a featured snippet, it’s more likely to become featured in other related queries.

That’s why you should structure your article in a way that answers every related question in one location.

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Focus on beefing up one solid article that answers tons of questions rather than multiple articles if you want to earn featured snippets.

Word count is a huge factor to consider, too.

Tip #6: Stay within the optimal word count

Keep your section tight and concise so that Google can easily feature your content.

Section off your lists, paragraphs, and steps rather than letting them all run together.

Just look at this list — it’s only 52 words long!

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According to SEMrush, this is a pretty normal length for a featured snippet. Their analysis found that “[t]he most common length of content in featured snippets is between 40-50 words.”

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Because of this, you should try and keep each section of content no longer than 50 words and no shorter than 40.

Use headers to break up your content sections.

Tip #7: Use headers

One quick, simple way to format your content for featured snippets is to make sure that you break up each section.

Use the “Paragraph styles” section on Google Docs or in WordPress to do this.

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Organize your steps, lists, or paragraphs with headers. I prefer h2 headers, myself. Use h1, h2, h3, or h4, and be sure to organize your subheadings by size.

For example, a subheading under a main heading that is h3 should be h4, not h2.

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If you add “Step 1, Step 2” or “Rule 1, Rule 2” to each heading phrase, Google will place them in chronological order.

So be sure to format your article in chronological order, too, so that Google will be more likely to feature it.

Another great tip is to add a whole new area to your site devoted to providing resources to your readers and customers.

Tip #8: Add a “how-to” section to your website

Since featured snippets are such a great opportunity to attract website traffic and gain new leads, it’s a smart idea to redesign your site in a way that lets you optimize “how-to” content.

Some websites are creating entire sections on their sites that are specifically for giving answers to their readers’ questions.

Here’s how Lowe’s is doing it with their “How-to Library:

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This gives all of your content that is devoted to answering questions or solving pain points a place to live on your site.

If you don’t want to create a “how-to” section, a Q&A area might be a good idea instead.

This area could include answers to frequently asked questions about your products, services, or industry.

High-quality images and videos also boost your chances of ranking for featured snippets.

Tip #9: Add high-quality images and video

Most people love to learn visually, which is why photos and videos can help you rank for featured snippets.

Adding images to each step doesn’t have to be hard. I have repeatedly said that Canva is a great tool for creating your own images because it truly is.

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Upload your own images or pick a free Canva stock photo. Then, choose free shapes, icons, and more to add to your images.

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Don’t forget about video either. It’s huge for engagement.

65% of people watch at least three-quarters of a video and 59% of executives believe that people are more likely to watch a video if they combine text with video.

One simple way to do this is to create a voice transcript for all of your videos. Google will recognize the text and might choose it for a featured snippet.

You should also make sure that your video content is high quality.

I try to add transcripts for almost all of my videos, like this one:

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I write the entire voice transcript in the description area of the video, right under my other social links.

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This allows me to combine my video efforts and my SEO and keyword research plans, optimizing my videos for featured snippets, too.

Conclusion

Trying to keep up with Google can be absolutely exhausting.

But it looks like featured snippets aren’t going anywhere. In fact, they’re on the rise. That means that pages with featured snippets are dominating search queries.

They’re the first thing that comes up in most SERPs and they’re more than just plain links.

Earning a featured snippet means that you rank for position zero, which is the highest ranking spot possible without advertising.

If you want to boost conversions, drive visitors to your website, and beat your competition easily, ranking for featured snippets is the answer.

Now that you know exactly what featured snippets are, there’s no excuse not to try and rank for them.

Start out by finding out which featured snippets your competitors rank for with a tool like SEMrush. You can also use Google to find other featured snippet opportunities.

Use Answer The Public to identify tons of potential content ideas, and be sure to answer as many related questions as possible in one article.

Keep the word count for each question brief: no more than 50 words. Use headers to break up steps and lists, too.

Don’t forget to add a “how-to” or Q&A area to your website to give content that you optimize for featured snippets a place to live.

And add lots of high-quality images and videos where you can. Create voice transcripts for videos so that Google will recognize the text and consider your videos for snippets, too.

What are your tips for ranking for Google’s featured snippets?

The post 9 Tips for Ranking in Google’s Featured Snippets appeared first on Neil Patel.



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How to Write Ecommerce Emails That Don’t Annoy the Crap out of Your Readers


Email marketing is an essential component of every business.

But it’s even more important for your ecommerce website.

Why?

It’s one of the best ways to communicate with your customers.

As an ecommerce business, you don’t have the luxury of seeing your customers face to face like you would if you were a brick-and-mortar company.

Sure, there are other ways you can communicate with your customers.

They can call your customer service department or reach out to you on social media.

But marketing experts agree that email is the most effective digital marketing tactic.

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With that said, your strategy is only as effective as your message.

If your previous campaigns aren’t getting much of a response, you might need some help writing your emails.

Luckily for you, I can coach you through that.

No more bad emails.

I’ll show you how to write an ecommerce email that won’t leave your readers shaking their heads.

Start with a goal

Before you do anything, you need to establish a clear objective for your message.

What do you want your reader to do once they receive the email?

If you can’t figure that out ahead of time, there’s no way the recipient will take the action you want them to take.

Here are some examples of goals you may want to consider:

  • launch a new product
  • promote a special event or sale
  • upsell on a previous purchase
  • send shopping cart abandonment messages

The list goes on and on, but this is a good place to start.

Make sure each message focuses on one goal.

Don’t overwhelm the reader.

If you give them too many options, they may get confused and end up doing nothing.

The message should have a clear call to action.

Here’s an example from Fab:

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This message has a clear and concise goal.

Fab is trying to get their subscribers to download their mobile application.

That’s it.

They aren’t offering a discount. There’s no special event.

The reader won’t be confused by this message.

Obviously, Fab wants to start promoting sales on their app.

That may be an undertone of the company’s overall marketing campaign.

However, the email doesn’t need to get into all that.

It’s short, sweet, and actionable.

A 2017 report on mobile usage found that 90% of mobile media time is spent on apps, which means Fab’s campaign is smart.

Ultimately, I’m sure they believe this will help increase conversions and revenue.

But for the time being, the message is strictly to drive downloads.

Start with a goal, and make sure your message represents that objective.

Your message needs to deliver value to the reader

Don’t just send an email because it’s been a week since your last message and you think it’s time to send another.

While sending a message once a week may be a viable strategy, each email needs to offer value to the subscriber.

If you’re not offering any value, the reader may consider your message as spam.

Here’s an example from Huckberry:

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This message encourages the subscribers to invite their friends to the Huckberry community.

Why would anyone do this?

Because their campaign adds value.

Huckberry is going to give away prizes to people who share this message with friends and family.

If the message just said “invite your friends” without offering an incentive, the subscriber wouldn’t see any value. The email would be useless.

Can you promote your product while providing value?

The answer is: it depends.

For example, DODOcase was able to hype their product before launching it by promoting it to potential customers. As a result, it sold $7 million worth of products within 90 days of their first product launch.

What else offers value to your customers?

Look again at our first example of Fab.

Even though they were promoting their mobile app, the message still provided value. It offered:

  • free shipping
  • free returns
  • best price match

We know that 87% of Americans say price is the most influential factor in their purchasing decisions.

And 80% are influenced by the cost of shipping and delivery speed.

Discounts influence 71% of American shoppers.

What do these three statistics have in common?

Value.

That’s what your customers want, so that’s what you need to give them.

Make sure your ecommerce email focuses on the value you’re offering.

Your subject line is important

What’s the first thing your subscribers see when they get an email from you?

The subject line.

Your subject line is one of the top reasons why people would open your message:

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You have to put just as much thought into your subject line as you put into the rest of the message.

If your subject line can’t hook the recipient, they will never see the content of your email.

Here are some guidelines for writing a subject line that will increase your open rates:

  • create urgency
  • use breaking news
  • tell a story
  • stimulate curiosity
  • personalize it
  • send an offer

Those of you who struggle with catchy, creative, or actionable subject lines can refer to these points for inspiration.

Look at how Eddie Bauer creates a sense of urgency with this email:

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It’s the last day to get 50% off your fleece purchase.

If the customer doesn’t act now, they will miss out on the deal.

Use this technique for your subject line.

  • Sale ends tonight
  • 48 hours left
  • Limited quantity remaining

You can use these phrases when creating a subject.

I also highly recommend using storytelling in your email subject line:

“Here’s how I did XYZ…”

Say something to that effect.

Stories engage the reader.

Creating engaging content is a top priority for marketers in 2017.

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Content marketing experts recognize the importance of stimulating the customer’s curiousity.

Accomplishing this in your subject line puts you on the right track to converting the reader with the rest of your message.

Focus on your call to action (CTA)

Earlier, I talked about the importance of establishing a clear goal for your campaign.

The CTA needs to mirror that objective.

Use words like:

  • Buy now
  • Save today
  • Claim your reward
  • Become a VIP member
  • Choose the style you want
  • Reserve your seat
  • Earn rewards
  • Click to reveal my coupon
  • Upgrade my service

Don’t overwhelm your customers with the CTA.

Pick one and go for it.

Use a button instead of a hyperlink.

Buttons can increase conversion rates by 28% compared to a hyperlink.

Check out this CTA button from De Beers Jewelers:

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It’s clear, unique, and creative.

It doesn’t just say something boring like, “Click here.”

You can use bright colors to draw attention to your CTA like Pizza Hut does:

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Green has nothing to do with the Pizza Hut logo or brand, but it makes for a perfect CTA button.

This message also adds value, addressing the topic disccused above.

Pizza Hut sends a coupon code with an expiration date to create a sense of urgency.

The campaign encourages their subscribers to order food online.

Utilize drip campaigns

Drip campaigns make sense for ecommerce companies.

They are also known as marketing automation, lifecycle emails, or autoresponders.

Focusing on automation can make your life a lot easier.

What’s a drip campaign?

A drip campaign is a series of emails that get delivered in a predetermined order to your subscribers.

This is a perfect opportunity for you to contact your customers.

Here’s an example.

Let’s say someone makes a purchase on your ecommerce platform.

The first message of your drip campaign can say something like, “Your order is confirmed.”

Try something similar to this template from Fitbit:

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The message assures the customer that their order has been placed.

You should always send a confirmation email to your customers.

People are cautious when they enter credit card information on the Internet.

Over the past 5 years, 46% of people in the United States have experienced credit card fraud.

If they don’t get a reassurance that their order went through safely, they could feel uneasy about your website.

Not everyone who orders from your site is an email subscriber.

But you should still ask for their email address to send them this information.

For those people, you can include a CTA button that encourages them to subscribe to your emails.

“Join our email list to receive 20% off your next purchase.”

The second and third phase of your drip campaign will be:

  • Order shipped
  • Order delivered

Again, both of these emails make sense to the recipient.

What will make your readers want to scratch their eyes out?

If they don’t know why they received a message.

Nobody will question this drip sequence.

Finally, you can send a fourth email in the drip campaign to follow up with the buyer.

Include a customer survey in the message to see if they are happy with their purchase.

Surveys help create loyal customers, increase retention rates, and grow profits.

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Using the drip campaign method allows you to email a customer four times for just one purchase.

All these messages will be informative and valuable to the recipient.

Don’t forget to send shopping cart abandonment emails

Similar to the last point, shopping cart abandonment messages make sense to the reader.

They won’t be asking, “Why did I get this message?”

The customer was shopping and was just a click or two away from finalizing the purchase until something stopped them.

A number of things could have caused this:

  • unexpected costs like taxes or shipping
  • they were just browsing
  • website crashed or slow loading time
  • didn’t feel comfortable submitting credit card information

These are just a few common responses.

But you still need to send the email to remind your customers to check out.

Sending this message will improve your conversion rate.

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You need to include this strategy into your email marketing arsenal.

It’s essential for ecommerce websites.

The message has a clear goal: to finalize the sale.

If you want to add value for the customer, send a promotional code to discount the order.

Embed a video in your message

If you’re worried your readers might be scratching their eyes out because of your current email campaign strategy, I’ve got a solution: mix things up.

Turn your readers into viewers.

Don’t make them read anything. Instead, send a video message.

Your customers want to watch videos.

Don’t believe me?

Well, the numbers don’t lie.

In fact, 43% of people want to see more videos from marketers.

If you’re launching a new product for your ecommerce site, send your subscribers an informative video message.

SproutVideo improved their click-through rate by 60% when they added videos to their email marketing campaign.

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Your ecommerce site can do the same thing.

It’s a great opportunity for you to do a product demonstration or a tutorial.

Conclusion

It’s great you’re utilizing email marketing campaigns for your ecommerce site.

This can’t change, but the content of your messages may need some improvement.

You don’t want your readers wondering why they received a message.

If you’re not adding value to the customer, they might unsubscribe, block you, or mark your message as spam.

How can you write a killer ecommerce email?

Start with your goal.

What’s the purpose of the message?

Once you define an objective, keep the message short and focused on that goal.

Emphasize your call to action.

Your CTA button should be big, bold, bright, and not boring.

Give the customer a reason to click.

Your subject line matters.

Customers won’t bother opening the message if the subject line is weak and doesn’t grab their attention.

If you’re unsure when to email your customers, set up a drip campaign that automatically sends updates after an order is placed.

Send out shopping cart abandonment emails to help improve your conversion rates.

Videos are a great way to turn readers into viewers.

Try to include videos and other interactive emails into your campaign.

Following these tips will help you keep your audience engaged instead of frustrated.

How will you alter the subject line of your next email to increase open rates?





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Here’s a Quick Sneak Peek at This Year’s Massive Black Friday Discount


The crowds. The lines. The noise. The endless circling to find parking. Black Friday is an American institution — and for good reason. Commerce is king, humans like to save money, and Black Friday marries those two together unlike any other date on the calendar. But over the last handful of years, something has come
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How to Use Twitter’s Advanced Search to Drive 100% More Leads


twitter advanced search

Just 16% of marketers believe that outbound marketing practices actually provide leads of the best quality.

So what other alternatives can successfully drive leads?

There are over 328 million monthly users active on Twitter, making it a platform full of potential when it comes to lead generation.

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There’s also a 100% higher lead-to-close rate with social media over outbound marketing.

Unfortunately, it can be hard to know how to find leads effectively on Twitter.

But if you know how to use Twitter’s advanced search queries, it doesn’t have to be so difficult.

General search options on Twitter make it hard to find exactly what you’re searching for. Advanced search lets you easily find specific tweets, people, and companies.

These advanced search options are essentially a gateway for finding quality leads for free.

The only cost you may have to consider with a Twitter account is paying an employee to manage it and search for leads. That’s it.

That’s why I’m going to tell you what advanced search queries are and how to use them to drive (at least) 100% more leads.

Here’s why you should use it.

Why you should use advanced search

Tons of Twitter users are talking about your company and your products.

They just might not be tagging you in their posts with an @ symbol. Or maybe they are, but their tweets are getting lost in the crowd. Advanced search helps you find them.

Chances are, you have already used Twitter’s search panel on the right-hand side of your screen to hunt for hashtags and other users.

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Say you search for a company, such as Starbucks. You’ll be able to see accounts related to your search, top tweets, and recent tweets mentioning that keyword.

But the results aren’t specific. They really aren’t that great.

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These search results aren’t as narrow as they can be to help you determine and follow leads. They’re too general.

And if Starbucks was your company or competitor, that’s disappointing.

Millions of tweets go out each day, so finding exactly what you’re looking for means that you need some filtering tools to narrow down your search.

Twitter’s advanced search option does just that.

You can see every tweet from today by people in any location with any particular phrase you can think of.

You can look at every tweet from your competitor mentioning a certain keyword or find all the users who have “influencer” in their bio, like I do.

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Here are some advanced searches that are helpful for identifying and drumming up leads on Twitter.

We’ll start out with sentiment searches.

Search by sentiment

Sentiment searches are a great way to find out what people are saying about a certain topic, product, brand, etc.

You can also give some great customer service to users who are already your customers (or guide users who aren’t customers yet toward your brand).

There are a few sentiment searches you should try out. For starters, search for happy or sad faces and question marks to find questions people are asking on the platform.

Notice that you can filter results to see top tweets, recent tweets, people, photos, videos, news, or broadcasts relating to your phrase.

In the example below, I searched for the phrase “iphone?” to find people asking questions about iPhones.

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A simple search like this is a great way to find out what questions people are asking in your industry or about your products or even your competitors’ products.

Be sure to read through the context of each tweet, though, because sentiment filters depend on context.

For instance, someone asking questions about an iPhone could be looking for apps, security information, or troubleshooting guides.

This method is a great way to find users who are looking for answers or recommendations.

Then you can answer their industry questions and leave a link to your site or recommend your own products to them.

If you own a restaurant in a certain location, for example, you could easily find out if anyone is looking for a place to eat and send them to your business.

Do this by entering a keyword related to your industry (like ‘seafood restaurant’) and add ‘near:(your location) within:(X mi)’ to find potential local customers.

Your results should look something like this:

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Finding new customers is as simple as that.

And providing help to users with questions can boost your online reputation, which is an added perk of using sentiment searches.

You can also track mentions by searching for specific usernames.

Track mentions by searching for usernames

One of the easiest ways to track new leads is to do username searches to track mentions.

All you’ve got to do is add ‘to:’ or ‘from:’ before a username.

The ‘to:’ search will reveal tweets sent to that user. For example, if you search for “to:NeilPatel,” you’ll be able to see tweets that other Twitter accounts sent to me.

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If you enter in ‘from:’ before my name, you’ll see tweets that I have sent out instead.

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Say I’m interested in seeing if anyone has questions for me about lead generation. All I would have to do is add that keyword to a ‘to:’ search, like this:

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Then, all I’ve got to do is engage with those users who might not already be paying customers. It’s kind of ironic to use a search query for lead gen to actually generate leads, isn’t it?

But it works.

And it can give you insight into what people are saying to your competitors and asking them about, too.

If you find that customers are unhappy with one of your competitor’s features, tweet them a discount code to try your product or service instead.

You can dive into any conversation and add your opinions and answers to build an engaging relationship with Twitter users.

It’s important to save these searches for later reference so you can look at them at any time.

Save your searches

Twitter lets you save as many as 25 searches per account. That’s plenty of searches to keep tabs on.

To save a search, all you’ve got to do is click the three dots on the right-hand side of your search query. Then, select “Save this search.”

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That way, you can keep an eye on people who are sharing your blog posts, mentioning you or your competitors, or tweeting about certain keywords.

You can also utilize ‘From these accounts’ and ‘To these accounts’ filters to see all of your past tweets with other people.

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You can also save searches with geolocation filters to find people in your region. This is a must-have for local businesses that want to attract new customers.

Use geolocation filters

Find tweets in any country or city with geolocation filters.

That way, you’ll be able to weed out the tweets from faraway places. This is important if you’re a small local business because you can target leads right in your area.

Just add ‘near:(city/country) and ‘within:(X mi)’ to find tweets from any location across the world.

The ‘near:’ addition filters out exactly where you want to see tweets from. The ‘within:’ addition lets you pick the distance from that location you want to see tweets from.

Essentially, it creates a radius around the zip code, city, county, or other region you specific with the ‘near:’ filter.

If you’re a business owner in Seattle who wants to tweet about relevant local current events, just add your zip code when searching for any keyword.

In this example, I searched for “#news” near:98101 within:10mi:

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This advanced search option is an easy way to find out what’s going on in your area so you can join the conversation.

Plus, if you find someone complaining about a local business issue with geolocation filters, you could even reply to your competitor’s customers before they do.

Exclusions are another filter to keep in mind when generating leads.

Exclude irrelevant results

Cut out the search results you don’t want by using the exclusion filter.

All you’ve got to do is add in the (-) symbol before a keyword, filter, or Twitter user.

For example, if you want to find Twitter users who are talking about smartphones, but you don’t want to see tweets from a competitor (Samsung), just search for ‘smartphone’ -samsung.

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Getting refined results really is that easy.

You can also use the tool to find tweets without links.

Just add ‘-filter:links’ to your search.

Using hashtags (and then searching for them) is another simple way to generate leads on Twitter.

Create hashtags and search for them

If you use hashtags correctly, you can build your own filter for driving leads.

Be careful not to use more than one hashtag though, and try to come up with a branded, creative hashtag to add to the majority of your posts.

One of the most successful branded hashtags was Redbull’s #PutACanOnIt:

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The hashtag became popular worldwide because it encouraged people to place Red Bull cans in a creative place, take a photo, and share it with the hashtag.

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This not only allows your customers to do your marketing and product placement for you, but it also creates a branded hashtag you can search later to interact with Twitter users.

Another successful, creative hashtag campaign is Charmin’s #TweetFromTheSeat:

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These hashtags might even encourage people who have never purchased your products to buy them and try them out so that they can participate in the campaign.

You don’t have to do advanced searches manually, though, so try and save yourself some time by letting Twitter do the work for you.

An easier way to use advanced search

It can be helpful to know what text to search for to find advanced searches.

But you can also just click a few buttons to apply filters rather than having to type them out manually each time.

Start out by clicking the “Search filters” button in any search query.

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Then, just select the “Advanced search” button from the drop-down menu.

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From there, it will take you to this form where you can select words, people, places, and dates:

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If you want to find a certain word, hashtag, or phrase, just add it in the “Words” area.

Add specific accounts in the “People” section using the person’s Twitter handle. Then, select places and dates to narrow down your search even more.

Selecting more than one search filter is easy if you take this route. And you don’t have to type anything manually, risking a typo. Twitter does all the work for you once you hit “Search.”

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If you need some ideas for which keywords to search in the “Words” section, check out my guide to conquering keyword research.

I recommend narrowing down dates with every search you do.

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Tweets from 7 years ago aren’t going to help you drive more leads. But recent ones will. You need to know about the most recent activity.

To boost your results, narrow them down to posts that users tweeted between a set of two dates.

You can look for tweets from the last few days, weeks, or months, or even the last year.

If you want to shell out a few extra bucks each month for even more advanced Twitter searches, try out Twilert.

Use Twilert

Monitoring Twitter 24/7 can be a tough job, even when you know how to use advanced search.

If you’re willing to pay a small fee to boost your chances of success with driving leads on Twitter, then try out Twilert.

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They offer a 30-day free trial, so you can get a good feel for their features and software before committing to a paid subscription.

The tool is like advanced search on Twitter but on steroids. It offers far more functionality as well as automation.

You just type in the filters and information you want to save as a search, and Twilert will send you emails in real time to update you about each query.

If you’ve already created a branded hashtag or phrase, this is something I highly recommend. It’s worth the cost, and you won’t have to remember to run searches every day or week.

Plus, you’ll know the conversations on Twitter at all times of the day without actually being on the platform. We have to sleep sometime, right?

Just search for the same types of filters with this tool and you’ll have live updates without spending time looking for them.

Here’s how you can actually connect with leads once you’ve used advanced search to identify them.

Connect with your leads

Connecting with the leads you’ve found from advanced searches is as simple as engaging with users. Talk to them, follow them, and add relevant information to your reply.

Here’s how Apple does it:

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Start out by following a customer’s account.

Follow your leads (literally).

Once you’ve identified a lead, head to their profile and follow them.

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The chances of them following you back are fairly high, and this will give you a better chance of being able to engage with them efficiently.

Plus, you’ll be able to direct message each other if necessary.

Then, reply to tweets to spark conversation and provide support.

Reply to tweets.

Look at how Uber responded to this Twitter user:

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Their response was helpful, kind, and positive.

You shouldn’t just respond to negative tweets or tweets where users are seeking help, though.

Respond to the positive ones to thank users for their praise. Other Twitter users will notice your kind exchange (and see that it wasn’t one-sided).

Be sure to include helpful links if you can.

Include a link to your website.

Verizon added this link to their site in their reply to solve a customer support issue:

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This is a great move to help users solve problems, but it’s also a good idea to add links when you aren’t trying to resolve an issue.

They’ll send people over to your site where they can actually make a purchase. Links provide the bait for users to make the transition from a mere Twitter follower or user to an actual customer.

Be sure to add in links as often as you can.

Conclusion

Most marketers don’t think that outbound marketing is effective.

There are millions of users on Twitter, and social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing.

It’s really a no-brainer that Twitter is a great place to drive leads. But you’ve got to know how to use advanced search options to find them first.

Advanced searches let you find specific leads to target and build relationships with by adding extra filters to Twitter search queries.

Search by sentiment to identify people with questions or people who feel happy or sad about certain keywords.

Add in emoticons such as “:)” or “:(“ after a word or phrase or add a question mark.

Track mentions by searching for specific usernames and save the searches you want to keep up with on a regular basis.

Add in geolocation filters to find tweets from local users. Exclude irrelevant results by using the exclusion filter.

Create branded, creative hashtags and search for them later to find leads and engage with customers.

If you don’t want to run searches manually, head to the advanced search form to let Twitter do all the heavy lifting.

Use a paid service like Twilert to receive live updates on all your searches.

Finally, connect with your leads by following users, replying to them, and sending out relevant links to your website.

Which advanced search queries help you drive the most leads?

The post How to Use Twitter’s Advanced Search to Drive 100% More Leads appeared first on Neil Patel.



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