Knowledge Panels, Featured Snippets, and Today’s Youth

Google’s Knowledge Panels and Featured Snippets have led to an increase in what is known as “no-click” search results: consumers will search something, then find an answer without having to click a single link. This benefits the searcher and Google but impedes click-through rates for those producing content. While this is worrying for those in SEO, it doesn’t look like Knowledge Panels or Featured Snippets are going away anytime soon.

A survey conducted by Path Interactive, which covered multiple countries and age ranges from 13->70, found that Knowledge Panels and Featured Snippets are growing in popularity among younger users.  When asked what they do when faced with a featured snippet, 40% of responders between the ages of 13 and 18 said that they considered their search done. Less than 15% of those over the age of 70 answered similarly. Of the almost 2,500 responders, 36.8% said that they considered their questions answered when given a Knowledge Panel. 




These numbers are scary for those whose jobs rely on click-through rates, but they provide an interesting opportunity for those who work in SEO: designing content that Google likes enough to be featured. Those featured in Knowledge Panels or Featured Snippets get an almost doubled click-through rate than those not featured. 

The type of content appearing in the Snippets also influences click-through rates. Searches with simple answers tend to have lower click-through rates. 30.6% of consumers concluded their searches on features such as weather forecasts when given a Snippet, while only 13.6% of consumers said they consistently relied on features regarding job searches, local events, or more complicated results. 

From Hubspot


Google is adapting to better respond to user experience, often at the expense of those desperately trying to increase organic traffic. According to the survey, 93% of respondents said that Google had maintained or improved its user experience over the years. If improved user experience goes hand in hand with increasing challenges on SEO, I don’t think we can expect Google to ease up on those in SEO.

Breadcrumbs Just got an Upgrade

Breadcrumbs have been helping users navigate websites for well over a decade now, and as technology has gotten better, managing the breadcrumbs have gotten easier. A recent announcement by Google has revealed that website managers will now have access to structured data reports of their breadcrumbs and will receive a notification in the case of malfunctions. This will allow website managers to more efficiently identify and fix issues, decreasing any impact they might have on user experiences. 

Google announced the new feature through a tweet with this photo attached


With all the competing website-building companies and their desire to make SEO more accessible, building breadcrumbs has never been easier. Hierarchy-, history-, and attribute-based breadcrumbs have made website navigation easier for consumers and are controlled by the website administrators. Well designed breadcrumbs even make it to Google search results, making it easier for consumers to navigate the site before they even click through. 


Google’s announcement has made the use of breadcrumbs even more essential for SEO than before.  The increased access to technology means that those who ignore it will be left in the dust.

Google’s September Core Update: What to Know

The most recent in Google’s long list of core updates, September 24th saw the rollout of a new, content-oriented update. Google has ensured webmasters in their announcement that no specific pages have been targeted and that “there’s nothing wrong with pages that may perform less well in a core update.” Self-assessment is advised for webmasters of pages that may see lower rankings, as is a visit to Google’s advice on how to build a high-quality website.

If yours is a website that has suddenly dropped in the rankings, or even if you might want to see your website get higher rankings, Google has provided some updated advice for how to achieve that. This includes:

  • Ensuring your site has original content
  • Providing comprehensive coverage of the topic 
  • Providing an in-depth analysis of the topic
  • Making sure you do not just copy and paste from your sources, and that you cite sufficiently
  • Your headlines and title pages should relate to the content, not exaggerate it
  • If you were just stumbling onto your website, would you trust its information based on its sources, author, and website’s “About” page?
  • Making sure all your facts are true and verifiable
  • Making sure there are no grammar or spelling mistakes
  • Ensuring the web design is pleasing 
  • Avoiding mass-produced content
  • Developing the webpage with mobile in mind
  • Comparing the content to other content that might appear in the same search


Keeping up with Google’s core updates can be a challenge, but producing good and original content is a safe way to stay high up in the rankings. For a comprehensive guide on how Google rates quality content, feel free to examine their Search Quality Rating General Guidelines. For a less comprehensive guide (Google’s is 167 pages), check out some of our content-focus pieces here and here, or contact our team and we can talk about how to optimize your webpage.

Google Update: Same-Day Data

Google announced Monday an improvement to website reports geared towards fast-paced webmasters. The update, same-day website data, is a response to the “user’s #1 feature request,” according to Google. 

The update will affect performance reports, allowing webmasters to view general statistics on their sites less than a day old. This means that weekend visitor statistics will be available Monday morning as opposed to Wednesday, as it was previously. Webmasters can even view same day statistics; especially useful for holidays or high-traffic days.

Access to these early numbers will help webmasters with website maintenance, international site audience numbers, and early analytics. To keep up with the more recent numbers, Google has also updated its time zone settings, making them clearly visible when choosing a statistical date range. This will help websites with international audiences more efficiently report their local as well as regional findings.

While the same-day website data will help to improve immediate performance reviews, Google stated in its announcement that the fresh data is not yet supported by The Search Analytics API or the Discover performance report. It should also be noted that data points will change and update before being finalized a few days after first being reported. 

These new changes will allow webmasters to update their websites and follow traffic more efficiently throughout the week, making quick fixes and analyses more effective than before. 

Reviews Plateau Low After Google Crackdown

A week after Google updated its review rich results algorithm, as covered and followed by Barry Schwartz of Search Engine Land, review rich results have plateaued around 33 to 36 percent, depending on which analytics tool you use. 




Mozcast’ SERP Feature Graph showed the largest drop between Monday, September 16th, the day the update was initiated, and Tuesday, September 17th, with a 3 point drop from 39.2 percent to 35.8 percent. From there, it dropped a further 2 points and has stayed steady between 33.2 percent and 33.5 percent. 




RankRanger’s SERP Insights showed similar results: a sudden drop and a trend towards a plateau. RankRanger varied from Moz by showing the largest drop occurring between September 17th and September 18th, with a difference of 3.8 points. While the days since September 18th have remained between 36.95 percent and 35.34 percent, September 23rd appears to be the start of an upward trend. The 23rd is the first day with a higher percentage of reviews than the previous day since September 15th, before the update.  

This update was made to improve consumer trust in reviews and address the “misleading interpretations webmasters have flagged to [Google],” as stated by Google. This meant removing self-serving reviews, largely posted by the entity under review and posted to their own page. It also meant limiting schema types that trigger review rich results, reducing the number of reviews seen for things consumers may not need reviews for. For more information on why the update was implemented and how to make sure your website doesn’t lose its review rich results, visit Google’s original announcement here.

Is Your Tagline as Creative as You Think it is?

Aggressive. Experienced. Cliché.

We at Mockingbird began to notice a trend in many firms’ taglines, namely, that they focus on the same overused, generalized words and phrases to describe their value to clients. I took a look at a random sample of 50 personal injury attorneys’ taglines across the country from Avvo’s directory, one from each state, and populated the word cloud* you see above.

It’s easy to see which words dominate the personal injury attorney tagline world. More than a quarter of the 50 taglines harp on their experience, 16% brag about how aggresive they will be, and 14% sing praises of the compensation they will earn for their clients. Sure, you’re aggressive in seeking justice for your clients. Sure, you have years of experience. But I shouldn’t be able to take your tagline and paste it into another law firm’s homepage and have it fit like a glove. Do you want potential clients to think you offer services identical to your competitors, approach situations the exact same way, and support them like every “run-of-the-mill” attorney?

No, you don’t.

So don’t use a slogan that makes you sounds just like the rest of them.

The whole point of having a tagline is to differentiate yourself from the competition, but when you sound just like everyone else you’re doing the opposite. What’s the solution?

  • Focus on what makes you different. Ask, “who are we and what makes us different from every other attorney we compete with?” This should be the first question you address when creating a tagline. Are you incredibly fast at responding to inquiries from potential clients? Do you take particular pride in the relationships you build or the settlements you have won? Then encapsulate that sentiment in a concise tagline.
  • Avoid clichés.
    When thinking about how to market yourself and your firm, stay away from broad generalizations. Choose wording and phrases that convey why you’re unique and in an exceptional position to give clients the legal support they need. A general rule of thumb is to shy away from adjectives. More often than not, they end up being too general and don’t convey the distinct advantage clients have to gain by choosing you. Lean more towards nouns and verbs to give your tagline energy and personality.
  • Remember that you’re speaking to real people.
    It goes without saying that whatever event happened that caused an individual to reach out to an attorney was a very trying situation. So think about what your potential clients are looking for. Put yourself in their shoes. They are seeking help. They are likely already under stress from having suffered a personal injury. And now they are looking at eight different firms that all promise aggression, high compensation, and are telling them how experienced they are. Speak to them with language that sets you apart and addresses the concerns and values THEY have.

If you believe that you are different and better positioned to help clients than your competitors, put words to it. Craft an original and honest tagline that sets you apart from the other firms your potential clients could be picking. Identify what you have to offer that is unique, and then don’t shy away from using that to market yourself. Don’t let your voice get drowned out in the crowd.

Need help crafting your own original and impactful tagline? Contact Mockingbird today to learn how we can help build a strong and successful brand for your law firm.

*Extraneous words (e.g. conjunctions such as “for,” “and,” “nor,” “or,” “yet,” and “so”) were removed before creation of the word cloud and similar words (e.g. “experienced” and “experience”) were categorized as the same.

A Guide to Creating Linkable Content

You’re the small fish in the ocean. The ocean is filled with sharks. As a local business, you are faced with the challenge of finding ways to compete with bigger companies with possibly more years of experience and undeniably deeper pockets. So how can you make the most of what you have? Consider three practical suggestions to make sure you put out content that will make others want to link to you.

Create Helpful Resources

Take the initiative to put together a calendar or lists of local events and attractions that will pique the interest of your target demographic. Not only will this make you stand out against your competition, but it will help your business be top-of-mind when potential clients are browsing for events in the area.

Cater to Featured Snippets

Google is a source for quick answers, and users will often stop looking if they find what they are looking for in a featured snippet. Knowing this, it’s crucial that you format posts in a way that caters to this. Optimize your content in a way that it comes as the answer to a question to increase the likelihood of being Google’s first choice in a featured snippet

Featured Snipped Example

How-to lists are ideal for encouraging this type of result. A personal injury lawyer may want to create a checklist for what do to after being in a vehicle accident, while an immigration attorney could opt to publish an FAQ page for common issues clients face.

Yes to Video, But Do it Well

Video can be an invaluable tool to have in your repository, but don’t be tempted to have video for the sake of having video. Consider what content will be most useful to your clients and focus less on generic company updates. For example, a criminal lawyer could produce a video along the lines of, “What You Should Do if You or a Loved One Have Been Charged with a Crime” to cater to the practical concerns of potential clients.

One move to appease YouTube’s ranking system is to entice users to stay on YouTube longer, since your channel is rewarded the longer the Watch Time of your user (a.k.a. the more time someone watches that your video stays on YouTube). A practical take on this is to break videos into shorter segments as parts to a series, with having Part 1 then Part 2 and so on. This way, you increase your business’s chances of ranking higher in a Google search.

Key Takeaways

Before diving into a blog post or video production for attracting potential clients, take a step back to make sure you know what will interest them. Ensure that what you are creating will be useful for your target audience. Your goal is to make helpful content for people that are in need of your services, and for that content to be the stepping stone that leads new clients straight to you.