What are Search Engine Results Pages?

These are the pages Google shows after a query is typed into the search bar.

Typically, the search results page is composed of two or more sections. These include a paid or sponsored section, organic results section, and local maps section, and may also include special sections like shopping or image results.

The way you can take advantage of showing up in these sections is by paying attention to the search intention for the particular keyword. Each section can help boost traffic to your website, especially if your site is above the fold or ranking in the top positions.

Featured Snippets in the SERPs

Google, as a search engine, has done a great job in creating different sections that appeal to different types of search queries users type in.

To put it plainly, these are additional sections and elements that appear on Google that provide more information than the usual 10 websites that show up.


Organic Section

This is the main area. It’s a free section that is shown to users because it’s relevant to their search.

Google ads

The paid Google Ads section and organic section in the SERPs look very similar. The only consistent difference is the paid spots will have the word “Ad” preceding them. This part of the SERPs is where the listing is paid for by an advertiser who’s trying to drive traffic to their website through search engine marketing. In the past, this section was limited to text-based ads but has since expanded to include “local services”, “shopping ads”, “local search ads” and more. You can buy these results by bidding on different keywords. Google looks at both the price you’re willing to pay per click and the “quality score” of your ads.

Featured snippet

Google will often feature what it believes to be the best answer to a query. The featured snippet appears at the top of the first results page and displays more content from the source website than other sites on the list. The URL appears below the snippet, making the content stand out. Providing thoughtful, concise content that addresses common questions about your products and services will increase the chance that you’ll be in this coveted spot.

Image pack

If Google thinks that images will be helpful to the searcher, the results will include a row of pictures and a link to switch to image search results. To be included here, your images need to be optimized for search engines.

In-depth articles

Research reports and similar long-form articles written by credentialed authors or published in reputable journals get special consideration in Google results. There isn’t a separate section for these, but they do stand out.

Other Important Snippets

Knowledge card

A knowledge card appears as a sidebar and often includes images as well as text. The information is drawn from multiple sources, and highlights a variety of different aspects of results for the query.

Knowledge panel

A knowledge panel is often displayed when the searcher is looking for a specific place or company. For example, if you Google a nearby restaurant by name, you’ll likely get a knowledge panel with the address, phone number, and hours of operation.

Local pack 

A local pack is a map showing the locations of businesses relevant to the search. It appears when the search includes a location or when Google finds relevant businesses close to the searcher’s current location. Below the map is a list with additional information for each result.

Local teaser pack 

A local teaser pack is similar to a local pack but when you click on a business you get more detailed information about what the company sells.


If you have reviews with star ratings on your own website, you may be included in a row of rated results. You can add a plugin to your site to foster reviews, but need very good ratings from lots of reviewers to appear on this list.

Related questions

On the first page of results, you’ll often see the heading “People also ask.” These are similar queries using different wording. For each of these, there is only one “answer” and a link to the source URL.

Shopping results

It’s pretty tough to get into the shopping results that usually appear at the top of the results page with images. Google chooses the keywords that allow you to appear here, and will only include popular items, regardless of what you’re willing to pay.


Sitelinks are a Google feature that link searchers to a specific page or place on a page. For example, log in pages or a page where you can change your password. Website optimization, with clearly understood headings, are key to making sitelinks work for you.


Google may include tweets if they are relevant to current news or trending topics.


Videos from individual websites, as well as from platforms like YouTube, can also appear in search results. For this to occur, the video needs to be named and described accurately, and be part of other relevant content.


Google’s newsbox appears in results when there are recent news stories or similar timely information related to the search terms.

Final Word

The more you know about the search engine results pages the better you can utilize and optimize your content.

If you stay up to date with Googles’ policies you can make get more traffic to your website. To learn more about our SEO services click here

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