How To: Optimize Your PDF Files To Get Featured Snippets (PDF SEO)

What are featured snippets?

They are search results. However, they do not appear as the usual ones. The difference is that they are more visual and tend to carry more data than the typical search results.

Well, over time, digital marketers seem to have developed a liking for them. This is due to the fact that they are more alluring, and users tend to click on SEO efforts successful.

Reports show that paragraphs that have featured snippets are more popular than the ones that do not.

As a result, they are instrumental in driving traffic, creating brand awareness and authority, and increasing conversions to mention a few.

SEO is quite a dynamic subject; what is useful today may turn out to be obsolete tomorrow. You can always expect a new trend to show up.

One of the hot topics in SEO is the use of PDF files. Digital marketers have become really smart about it and are optimizing them to get a featured snippet.

Including snippets in PDF files will do wonders for your SEO. Do not be left behind.

Tips to get Featured Snippets for PDF files

Below are some of the essential tips that will help you to get featured snippets for PDF files.

Have a proper title and file name

Just because it is PDF file does not mean that you can now ignore the rule of the thumb. The title and file name always have to be exquisite.

Featured Snippet Example

Just like when you are creating titles for your content, you need to include relevant keywords so as to lead the users to your site and generate the clicks.

You, therefore, need to do some research too when creating file names. Find out the phrases that the audience is using in the search queries and incorporate them in your titles. It is not really a daunting task.

There are plenty of keyword research tools that you could use for that. On top of finding the most used and high ranking keywords, you will also be able to point out the ones that your competitors are using.

Information on competitors will give you the arena to come up with better keywords.

To make them stand out, capitalizing every first letter of the words in your title is also essential. It will make your pdf file title readable and more visible.

Experience for mobile users should also be considered

Reports from Google show that about 60% of the search queries on the engine come from mobile devices.

What that tells you is that most of the people who will be looking for your products or services will do so using their smartphones or tablets.

Mobile SEO

As much as PDF files are mostly meant for desktops, there is still the need to make them mobile responsive. There are mobile apps that support PDF files.

You, therefore, have no excuse for not giving the users the best experience. How else can you make your files mobile friendly?

Have you ever considered breaking your content? You need to do it. Make it readable by using subheadings, bullet points, and aligning it in a way that it will be appealing to the visitors.

Images will also work fine. However, do not use too many of them. Also, compress them so that they do not make the loading speed slow.

Make your files easy to read. If they give the visitors a hard time, it might not really benefit your brand as it should.

Check on the size of the files

Webmasters are often advised to avoid using images that are too large. It is for a good cause.

Just like images, PDF files that are too large can affect the loading speed, which is something that the users are not really fond of.

Luckily for you, you do not have to eliminate some content to make the file smaller. All you are required to do is find a useful and reliable PDF compressing tool to do the job for you.

With a small PDF file, you will be able to provide all the information you want to your audience and at the same time ensure that the page loading speed is okay.

Content will always be king

Just because it is a PDF file does not mean that you can now ignore the importance of creating great and appealing content. No.

Note that the crawlers will still be doing their job. And for your site to be indexed, you need to give the search engine a good reason to. You should, therefore, have content on your landing page that will help the users.

Do not duplicate content that has already been published online. Also, keep it evergreen. If you want to edit your PDF then convert your PDF to Word document first using this tool: Once converted, edit your content and save it back to PDF.

It is one of the ways that you will keep the users who have previously interacted with your files coming back.

Quality is vital!

Do not force the users to download all the PDF files to find the information they are looking for. Always give them a good hint of the content that they should expect.

Link the PDF file to your site

Your files need to have a foundation. Instead of leaving it floating in the search engines, link it to your website. The crawlers will not fail to notice that. As a result, your files are more likely to get indexed, according to their relevance to a subject matter.

Use plain text

As you may well be aware, the search engine bots are not really conversant with reading images.

In fact, that is the reason why webmasters are encouraged to add a caption to their pictures. As a result, if some one searches for images relevant to your content, your site will show up in the search engine results pages.

Visuals are great; they grab the users’ attention and generate more clicks.

Looking for a way to edit and optimize PDF files? Check out our exclusive Wondershare PDFelement

Yes, it is true that PDF files are image-based. However, that does not out rule the fact that it will be easier for the bots to understand your text.

You are allowed to use images. Nevertheless, you should consider keeping them on the minimum.

Track the performance

One of the SEO success factors is tracking performance. It is the only way the web owner is able to know whether or not he is making progress and the time to change tack.

Track Performance

The same case applies for efforts directed towards optimizing pdf files for featured snippets.

The measurement of the success of the efforts, may, however, take a different approach.

The basics are, however, still applicable. Check the number of downloads that the pdf file has had. Compare with others that do not have featured snippets.

You are also allowed to compare with similar files and assess the success rate.

Protect your document

You do not want people to download and edit your pdf files. It is, therefore, vital that you write-protect your material. This will protect even your links.

Note that you are not the only person looking to use pdf files on featured snippets to drive traffic to your website. Your competitors, too, are doing it.

The last thing you want is for someone to rank for something they did not work for.


Remember that SEO is an investment. Just like any other legit investment, you cannot expect to see results immediately.

Unless it is gambling. Optimizing your PDF files for featured snippets being one of the SEO strategies has long term results. You, therefore, need also to be patient to see results.

That is not all. Patience also comes in when it is time to put in work.

SEO is not magic; it requires hard work. Do as much research as you can and do everything you can to keep up with the changing SEO trends in order to have a competitive edge.

Shortcuts will not also work for you. If you are not too conversant with content creation and other activities that surround SEO, get someone to assists as you learn.

As you strive to optimize PDF files for featured snippets, you need to keep it in mind that it is not an easy job. At the same time, remember that the efforts are all worth it.

We are talking about grabbing the user’s attention, visitors clicking more on your content, better ranking, and more conversions and sales.

As aforementioned, keywords still play an integral role in the featured snippets. As you research on the right keywords to use, you are still increasing the likelihood of your site ranking for keywords.

It is also worth noting that it is not always easy to get featured snippets. The same case goes for anything worth having. It does not change the fact that they are very rewarding.

Others are hard to get and others easier. If you are still new to the concept, it is advisable that you work with an expert to help you get a hold of them.

Optimizing your files for featured snippets is an opportunity for you to make the most out of SEO. For more tips on winning SEO strategies, visit

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