Google rolled out an update on Wednesday (22nd January) to prevent webpages from being duplicated on the first page of SERPs after being placed in a Featured Snippet.
The major change is now affecting every search listing in all regions, but a new study by seoClarity suggests that its impact may not be as significant as expected.
While duplicate listings were very common across the first ten positions in search rankings prior to the update, seoClarity says that the change has not resulted in any major shifts in overall organic search traffic.
“There was no statistically significant difference in organic Google traffic sent to these pages after they lost the duplicate listing on page one, based on an analysis of real traffic data for featured snippet listings across multiple industries,” the AI-driven SEO platform noted.
Although, seoClarity did observe a few small fluctuations in traffic for certain sectors after the update.
For example, information intent-based auto industry searches delivered a 10% spike in traffic between 22nd and 23rd January, while similar searches in finance saw a 4% rise during the same period.
Webpages that take a featured snippet position will now see their regular position in SERPs pushed to the top of the second page, though this is not always guaranteed.
Prior to the change, pages in featured snippets took up the second position on the first page of SERPs 28% of the time.
Webmasters and site owners should keep an eye on any possible fluctuations in the coming days, but the first signs indicate that there won’t be any significant changes for key metrics.