Google is de-duplicating the first page of search results.
Google’s public search liaison, Danny Sullivan, announced that pages who earned a featured snippet will no longer repeat as a regular listing on the first page of the search results.
If a web page listing is elevated into the featured snippet position, we no longer repeat the listing in the search results. This declutters the results & helps users locate relevant information more easily. Featured snippets count as one of the ten web page listings we show.
— Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) January 22, 2020
The corresponding regular listing may or may not appear as the first results on the second search results page. Featured snippets will also be counted amongst the ten organic listings shown.
Why should we care? For featured snippet owners, this change means that their URLs will only appear once on the first page of the search results – instead of twice. However, for those that don’t own the featured snippet, it means that their competitor (that does own it) will no longer appear twice either. Since it’s now possible to earn a featured snippet whilst appearing on the second page of the search results page, SEOs should keep an eye on their traffic as well as the tracking tools in order to see how their positions adjust to this change.