Google Secretly Updates AMP and Featured Snippets
The competition for Google’s rank zero has become harder than ever. Google AMP can now attain rank zero and have a featured snippet in the mobile search results. However, Google still maintains their earlier statement that AMP is not being considered as a major ranking factor for websites.
This update was recently released with no heads up from Google. Fortunately, Thomas Hefke, Head of Content Marketing for Springlane, noticed the changes that Google made.
Then, Glenn Gabe of G-Squared Interactive supported Thomas Hefke’s findings.
Since AMP is still not a ranking factor, the only change that Google sent out was to link an AMP to the featured snippet. This is what it looks like:
Even though they now showcase AMP links as featured snippets, they still show non-AMP results, such as this one:
As I’ve mentioned, Google has explicitly and continuously said that AMPs are not ranking factors, but I beg to differ. I believe that AMPs are indirect ranking factors, and here’s why:
Even though AMPs are different than normal pages, they’re still essentially the ‘same’. This means that AMPs still collect and feed CTR data to Rankbrain. Coincidentally, Rankbrain feeds on the CTR and dwell time metrics that it receives, then uses them to process which pages to show in the search results.
Basically, even though Google still claims that AMPs are not ranking factors, I think of them as INDIRECT ranking factors. If this is true, then it is really big news that Google is trying to tone down. Additionally, if this proves to be true, then the move to bigger and better AMPs shall be the norm for most SEO professionals. It’s a simple idea, but it brings a lot to the table when SEO is concerned.
Google’s slow but steady incorporation of AMP links to featured snippets is another step to a mobile-dominated online landscape. Let’s just wait and see how Google moves to better things.
What do you think about this news? Tell me in the comments below.