What is SERP? Full Form, Meaning, Features

SERP (search engine results page) is a common buzzword among digital marketing professionals. However, many outside the field are unfamiliar with it. Understanding SERPs is vital to the success of a website and, in turn, a business.

The ever-changing algorithms used by leading search engines can be confusing. Google is constantly changing its algorithms to deliver the best results possible. These changes are significant in theory but can also be challenging to keep up with.

What is SERP?

What is SERP

SERP is the page you see when you type in a query in a search engine. It can look different depending on the search engine; they may include shopping suggestions, images, videos, or simple text with meta descriptions.

Every SERP is unique and varies dramatically, even when different searchers use the exact keywords or phrases. This variation comes from search engines trying to optimize user experience and return results based on several factors, including a particular user’s search history, location, and language settings.

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SERP Features

Conduct a Google search on any topic, and you will notice the resulting SERP contains much more than just a list of results. 

You will see various panels presented in different formats, which is the best way to inform you about the subject you want to learn about. These are collectively known as SERP features. 

Collectively, SERP features help search engine users better find what they are looking for and provide valuable insight into search intent for marketers.

There are 2 types of Google SERP features that appear regularly:

  • Organic SERP Features
  • Paid SERP Features

Now, let’s learn more about all the Google SERP features.

a) Organic SERP Features

Organic SERP features are the additional components and listings that naturally appear on a search engine’s results page without paid promotion or advertising. The listings are based on relevance, quality, authority, and what the search engines deem most relevant to the user’s queries.

They are achieved through SEO, including Local SEO and content marketing strategies. These strategies play a vital role in securing and maximizing your organic visibility, ultimately enhancing the overall positioning of organic SERP features. You can master these skills by taking an online SEO course!

Let us detail some of Google’s most common organic SERP features.

1. Featured Snippets

The Google Featured Snippet is a large box at the top of Google SERP. Here, Google displays a snippet of content from the top-ranking organic results in the SERP. It is showcased when the search query shows informational intent. This feature provides valuable information in a precise form, giving searchers a quick answer to their questions. 

It features video or text from a website that directly answers the search query. The different formats for featured snippets are paragraphs, bulleted lists, and tables. Featured snippets put the website at the top of the SERP, making it more clickable on mobile and desktop.

Benefits of Featured Snippets

  • Increase in organic traffic and clicks leading to the website
  • Highest visibility over authoritative brands
  • Increase in organic conversion
  • Increase in the keyword’s ranking
  • Boost website and brand credibility

2. People Also Ask (PAA)

People Also Ask

The People Also Ask (PAA) box showcases an infinite list of algorithmically generated questions relevant to the search query. This dynamic Google SERP feature provides users additional information by asking closely related questions based on their initial search query and intent.

PAAs are mini-FAQs placed in the organic search results. They aim to offer an easy way to answer the user’s initial query and possibly the subsequent queries that may follow.

Benefits of People Also Ask

  • Discover related keywords and create long-tail keywords that can be used to optimize your website.
  • Helps to create better content.
  • Aids in getting more traffic and improves the click-through rate, which is important for ranking higher.
  • Avoid brand degradation with better answers for branded queries.

Also Read: What Are LSI Keywords in SEO? Examples, Benefits, Use

3. Google Popular Products 

This is an unpaid and organic display of Google shopping product listings. It showcases a carousel of products relevant to the search and available for purchase. 

Google Popular Products is one of the most sought-after organic SERP features in Google Shopping and is positioned in the middle of the search result page. Users can filter by price or by product category within the popular products feature.

Benefits of Popular Products

  • Allows smaller e-commerce stores to compete with stores with a larger budget.
  • Occupying a large real estate on the SERP gives you good visibility when your product appears under it.
  • It creates more opportunities for retailers to have a presence on the Google SERP.

4. Local Map Pack

When it detects a search query with local intent, Google displays a local map pack to users. A local pack appears when a user inquires with a location name or when Google’s algorithm notices that a searched item is accessible.

The local pack appears as a map with pins indicating businesses relevant to the search term. It includes the top 3 physical locations that Google considers relevant, along with reviews, hours, contact information, a link to the website, and directions via Google Maps.

Benefits of Local Map Pack

  • Helps improve your visibility as it is almost always shown at the top of the SERP.
  • The chance of getting clicks as the top 3 Google Search results is 75%.
  • Shows your reviews, which can significantly influence searchers.

5. App Install

An App Install organic results feature allows users to find and install new mobile apps directly relevant to their search queries from the SERP. These results are typically displayed in the SERP when a user’s search is related to a specific app or app type. Further, these results often include a description of the app, its rating, reviews, and other relevant information to help users decide whether or not to install it.

Benefits of App Install

  • Provides mobile app developers with increased visibility for their apps in SERP.
  • By prominently featuring app installs in SERP, users are likelier to install the app, leading to increased downloads for app developers.
  • Provides a more convenient and seamless way for users to access the app, improving the overall user experience.
  • Offers precious data on user behavior and preferences to help make informed decisions.

6. Knowledge Panels

Knowledge Panel in SERP

A knowledge panel often includes facts, social media links,  images, and other relevant information about the search query. It appears on the right side of the organic results with informational intent about businesses, brands, or organizations.

This feature typically appears when the search is tailored for specific places, organizations, people, events, etc. Google usually pulls information from Wikipedia or other websites for the Knowledge Panel. Your business appearing on the Knowledge Panel can boost your brand’s authority and credibility. SEO courses can help you gain these skills.

7. Knowledge Panel Review

The Knowledge Panel Review feature in SERP allows users to see customer reviews and ratings for a product or service in the search results. It involves reviewing and providing feedback on the information displayed in a Knowledge Panel. This feature provides valuable information to users, helping them make informed purchasing decisions based on other customers’ experiences. 

Overall, as an organic result of SERP, Knowledge Panel Review will be a valuable tool for organizations looking to improve their online customers’ credibility and drive traffic and customer engagement. 

Benefits of Knowledge Panel Review

  • Provides users with an overall positive experience by enabling them to access customer reviews and ratings on particular products or services.
  • Improves businesses’ online reputation by displaying positive customer feedback in the search results.
  • Provides organizations with an increased visibility in the SERP, which helps drive traffic to their website.

8. People Also Search

This organic SERP feature at businesses, a Google search result page, presents a list of related search queries for a specific search query. It provides users with additional information and options to explore related topics and queries, making a seamless search process. This feature aims to provide users quick access to explore related issues and queries, facilitating a seamless search experience.

The People Also Search For queries are determined by Google’s algorithm based on the user’s search history, the content of the web pages being searched, and the overall popularity of the related queries.

Benefits of People Also Search

  • Helps users understand the context of their original search query.
  • Provides quick access to related topics and” information.
  • Provides website owners with an opportunity to target new keywords and topics.
  • Increases the website’s visibility & drives additional traffic to the site from related queries.
  • Enhances the user experience and improves the discoverability of relevant information on the web
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9. Related Searches

The Related Searches is a list of related search queries at the bottom of the SERP. This organic SERP feature aims to provide users with additional information on a related topic, making it easier to find the desired information. The search engine’s algorithm determines the related searches, considering factors such as the user’s search history, the popularity of associated queries, and the content of the searched web pages.

Benefits of Related Searches

  • It helps users better understand the context of their original search.
  • It helps users discover new topics of interest & engine their understanding of a particular subject.
  • Improves the user experience so that users find the information relevant to their needs.
  • Increases the visibility of a website by appearing on related search results.
  • Helps drive additional traffic to a website from associated queries.

10. Related Products

A SERP’s Related Products feature is a list of similar or complementary products that appear on searches related to shopping or product-related queries. This feature offers quick and straightforward access to additional information on related products. The search engine’s algorithm determines the related products based on factors such as the user’s search history, the popularity of associated products, and the content of the product pages being searched.

Benefits of Related Products

  • Users can find products per their needs & have the option to compare before purchasing.
  • This feature provides e-commerce engineers with increased visibility & exposure for their products.
  • Users are given the most up-to-date and relevant information as it is updated in real time.
  • It improves user experience and makes it easier for them to discover new products per their need.

Also Read: What is SEO in Digital Marketing? Beginners Guide 2024

11. Top Stories

Top Stories in SERP

Top Stories is a feature in SERP that showcases a curated selection of news articles related to the user’s search query. It provides users quick access to the latest news and information on various topics.

When you search for a topic or keyword, the Top Stories feature Google at the top of the SERP with a carousel of headlines, images, and brief descriptions of the articles. The articles are selected depending on their relevance to the user’s search query and timeliness, ensuring that searchers have access to the most relevant and latest information on the topics they are interested in.

Benefits of Top Stories

  • It provides users a quick and convenient way to stay updated on the latest news.
  • Appearing in the Top Stories feature increases a publisher’s visibility and readership, helps users reach a massive audience, and attracts more traffic to their website.
  • Getting featured in the Top Stories feature helps establish the publisher’s credibility and authority.

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12. Sitelinks

These are links to several pages within a website, displayed beneath the main URL and description of a search result on Google’s SERP. Google’s web crawlers automatically generate site links, which help visitors quickly find a page or content on that site. The more site links you get, the more accessible visitors’ navigation will be, enhancing their browsing experience.

Sitelinks are of 2 primary forms: Links that take endusers to a page on a website or those that take endusers to a section of a webpage. Usually, Sitelinks appear when searching for a specific brand, and Google decides which site links to display. For branded search terms, Google serves as an expanded search result with an option for 10 extra links to a particular site. This allows users to directly reach the page they seek, leading to a better CTR.

13. Image Pack

An image pack consists of a series of images Google displays in search results for image-related queries. Google identifies search queries with visual intent and presents users with a carousel of images relevant to their search term. 

When Google’s algorithm determines that visual information is relevant to a search, the SERP includes a row of images. Clicking on any of the images directs you to the Google Images tab. 

14. Video Carousel

These are a collection of video results or snippets that appear in the organic search results enhanced with a video thumbnail. They have a title and a description and often link back to YouTube. This organic SERP feature is Google’s response to a query that identifies as having visual/ informational intent. 

Google video results only appear if a site has embedded video content relevant to the search. Video carousels are significant as they take up a lot of SERP real estate. They often appear at or near the top of the page, which makes them highly likely to get clicked.

15. Rich Snippets

Rich snippets are organic SERP features for a specific result that adds additional visuals to the result, like stars in product reviews. They give further information besides a title tag, a description, and a URL, which helps users decide when to click. FAQ snippets are a common form of rich snippets. With the extra information added to your listing, the chances of your listing getting clicked increase.

b) Paid SERP Features

Paid SERP features are the listings that appear on a SERP due to Search engine Paid Campaigns. Unlike organic results, paid results cost advertisers a fee to appear on the SERP.

The paid SERPs include a label at the top indicating the result is an ad. Paid results have various forms and formats that serve advertisers’ needs. 

Two Paid SERP features are: 

  1. Google Text Ads  
  2. Google Shopping Ads 

Paid ad spots are won by bidding on keywords.

1. Google Text Ads

Google Text Ads are paid advertisements created by advertisers who aim to display their links in Google’s search results for a keyword. These ads typically include headlines, the display URL, descriptions, and a call-to-action. They may occasionally include site listings, phone numbers, reviews, and other search features.

Google SERP has 2 prominent advertising positions for Google Ads:

  • At the top of the SERP page, above the organic search results
  • At the bottom of the SERP page

The placement of the ad depends on the advertiser’s bidding strategy. Ads listed on the top are more effective and have higher clickability and visibility. Reaching the top of the SERP requires a quality website and a high pay-per-click bid, depending on the keyword’s competitiveness.

Benefits of Google Text Ads

  • Shows up above the organic results, increasing your visibility.
  • Allows you to show up on specific keywords of your choice.
  • Ads are shown to those who are interested in the product or service you are offering.
  • A cost-effective choice for businesses as advertisers only have to pay once someone clicks on their ad.
  • Text ads provide immediate results that generate quick visibility and clicks.

2. Google Shopping Ads

Also called Product Listing Ads (PLAs), these are paid SERP features with paid ad placement on Google. Shopping ads display a carousel of products relevant to a user’s keyword that are available for purchase from paid advertisers. They allow people to quickly browse products across multiple e-commerce websites on the SERP. Shopping ads display the product name, image, retailer, brand, price, special offers, product ratings, number of reviews, and links to the website.

3. Map-Local Search Ads

Map-Local search ads are also paid ad results in SERPs that businesses pay to appear in the Map-Local feature. When a user searches for a local business or service, these paid results appear alongside organic results in the Map-Local feature. This feature shows a map with markers for companies that match the search query and a list of those businesses and their contact information. 

Users can click on a marker to access relevant information about the business, such as its address, phone number, business hours, customer reviews, and website. The businesses listed in these paid results have created a Google My Business profile and are using Google Ads to promote their businesses.

Benefits of Map-Local Search Ads

  • Helps users find local businesses that match their search query quickly and visually represent local businesses and services.
  • Improves the overall search experience by providing more comprehensive and relevant results.
  • Offers an opportunity to boost visibility to potential shoppers searching for local products & services.
  • Businesses can improve their advertising return on investment (ROI) by directly reaching their targeted audience.
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4. Shopping- Multistore

Multistores are paid results in SERPs that refer to sponsored listings from multiple online stores. Depending on the user’s search query, they appear at the top or bottom of a SERP. These listings are marked as “sponsored” or “ad” and allow users to compare products, prices, and availability from different online retailers for a specific product or category of products.

A store’s appearance in the multistore SERP feature is determined by several factors, such as search engine algorithms, bid amount, relevancy and quality of the store’s website, and product offerings.

Benefits of Shopping-Multistore

  • This feature provides online retailers with increased visibility & the ability to reach a wider audience.
  • Users can compare products, prices, and availability from multiple retailers all in one place, saving time and effort.
  • The multistore SERP feature can increase competition among online retailers, resulting in lower prices and improved user product offerings.

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FAQs on What is SERP and Its Features

1. What are the most popular SERP features?

Sitelinks, People Also Ask, Image Packs, and Featured Snippets are probably the most popular SERP features among SEOs.

2. What is the purpose of SERP?

SERPs are Google’s response to a user’s search query. They include organic search results, paid Google Ads results, Featured Snippets, Knowledge Graphs, and video results. In other words, you type or say something to Google.

3. Why is it essential for your website to rank higher in SERP?

In SERPs, the more higher a website ranks, the more visibility it has, which drives more traffic and potential customers it attracts. SEO is vital for e-commerce websites, as it helps boost their online visibility and drive traffic.


SERP features play a pivotal role in how businesses are perceived online. Finding accurate information immediately with a single search is how technology has evolved over the past few years. It is a huge benefit that we may be taking for granted.

Therefore, understanding SERP features is vital to boost conversions and attract website traffic. Hope this blog has helped you do that. Stay updated with the latest SERP features; your brand can thrive in online searches.

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  • Puja Sutar

    Puja Sutar is a proficient Content Writer at WsCube Tech. She holds B.Tech. in Electronics & Communication, and M.Tech. in VLSI Design. Her passion for technology and communication is evident in her insightful articles that simplify complex concepts for readers. Puja's writing is a valuable resource for tech enthusiasts and learners alike.