Danny Sullivan, Google’s public search liaison, announced on January 22, 2020 that if your website is listed in the featured snippets that your website will also not be listed on page 1.

This is a huge change from the way search has been handled in the past. Prior to this search change, a website could hold both the top featured snippets result and be listed first, second, or third in the organic rankings.

Featured Snippets in Search

Featured snippets are special boxes where the format of regular listings is reversed, showing the descriptive snippet first. Read more about how Google’s Featured Snippets work.

What is a Google featured snippet?
Both the large box of text and the “People also ask” section are considered featured snippets.

It is still yet to be determined how large of an impact this will have on organic search but Google’s rationale for the change is to increase user experience and declutter the results. This will impact 100% of websites globally and it’s not just going to impact large sites.

If you previously held both a featured snippet and the first organic search result, your organic search result will now be placed at the top of page 2.

We are still waiting for confirmation from Google to see if a site loses it’s featured snippet ranking will a site jump back onto page 1 or will it remain on page 2.

The SEO community is not very happy about this but google’s response has been that it is all about deduplication on page 1. But time will surely tell if this impacts negatively large amounts of organic traffic. Some agencies have already come forward and stated that they will block featured snippet generation if it hurts their organic traffic.