How to Create FAQs for Search Engine Traffic

Learning how to create well-optimized frequently asked questions (FAQs) is a great way to get more search engine traffic for your website. Unlike blog posts, which tend to be very time-consuming, a great FAQ can be created in a matter of minutes.

While the main purpose of a great FAQ page is to provide a better user experience for the website visitor, we are instead going to focus on the search engine aspect of individual questions.

A simple test for keyword mapping

Keyword mapping is great for generating topic ideas for SEO content. The problem is keyword mapping mainly looks at historical data. Google has stated that 15% of searches every day are new. That equates to a ton of new searches when you consider Google handles over 5 billion queries a day.

15 percent of searches we see every day are new—which means there’s always more work for us to do to present people with the best answers

Google

FAQs are easy to generate on a website and are a great way to probe for these new searches. While a great blog post can take hours to create, a solid FAQ can be created in 5-10 minutes.

The lighter workload means you can put out dozens of FAQs in the same time as it takes to create one 2,000 word article. All of this extra content helps you cast a wider net.

You can then use Google Search Console to monitor the results of this new content. The extra data allows you to keep improving the answers to questions that are starting to get traction. These could even eventually be converted into a much bigger article. We will go in this a bit later on.

Ideas for Generating FAQs

The first step is brainstorming FAQ content ideas. The following are solid methods for generating FAQs specifically for search engines.

  1. Customer Service: Before worrying about any digital tools for generating ideas, turn to your sales and customer service teams. They get questions from your target market all the time. Start writing these down.
  2. YouTube Comment Section: Look at the comment section on YouTube videos for related topics. A lot of the comments are questions that never get answered by the creator.
  3. Quora Questions: You’ll find a lot of great questions and the top answers can give you an idea of what people are looking for.
  4. Google questions: Simply search a question that is core to your main keywords in Google. Be sure to end it with a question mark so Google knows to show the question rich snippets. These are great ideas for SEO content. Google is essentially showing what other users are searching for with these suggestions.
  5. Keyword tool: There are a number of great SEO tools out there, like Mangools, UberSuggest, Moz, and Ahrefs. These tools have content generators for questions as specific features, like the screenshot from Mangools KW Finder below.
The screenshot above is an example search for FAQ content ideas

FAQ Schema Markup

Schema markup for FAQs is special code to tell search engines which part is the question and the answer. Otherwise, Google has to try to guess at how your content is structured.

While Google is getting much better at understanding content, it is best not to leave it to chance. Adding in schema code will increase the odds of your FAQs showing up in Google’s special search results.

The question below is an example of FAQ schema markup on the frontend.

What is schema markup and how does it help SEO?

It is code that helps search engines better understand the content on your website. This can help your content show up in Google’s rich snippet, like the example below.

Screen shot of Google for question and answer schema content

On the backend, the code shows up with special information and markup. This makes it much easier for Google to identify FAQ information.

{"@type":"Question","@id":"https://cybersprout.net/?p=9715#faq-question-1624198692448","position":1,"url":"https://cybersprout.net/?p=9715#faq-question-1624198692448","name":"What is schema markup and how does it help SEO?","answerCount":1,"acceptedAnswer":{"@type":"Answer","text":"It is essentially special code that helps search engines better understand the content on your website.","inLanguage":"en-US"},"inLanguage":"en-US"}]

Schema Tools for FAQs

Don’t worry if you’re not a developer. There are a lot of tools to help you out with schema markup.

WordPress Plugins for FAQs

If you’re using WordPress, I really like the following three plugins.

Ultimate FAQ

The first one, Ultimate FAQ, is a simple out-of-the-box solution if your main focus is to add FAQs.

This plugin will add a custom post type for questions with schema built-in. From there, you simply need to start adding content.

Yoast

Another option is one you might be using already. Yoast is a very popular plugin for WordPress SEO.

One feature a lot of users might have missed in one of their updates is the FAQ Gutenberg block. This makes it easy to add FAQs directly into your post content.

Example of Yoast’s FAQ Gutenberg block
SchemaPro

If you’re wanting to utilize schema for multiple content types, check out SchemaPro. It has features for all of the approved schema content types. It also has Gutenberg blocks for both FAQs and How-To content.

Google’s Schema Tools

If you’re not on WordPress, the Google Structured Data Markup Helper is a great tool. It is free and pretty simple to use.

The big difference for this tool is that it focuses on already published content. Most other tools add-in schema right at the time of publishing. That makes this a great tool for websites for any established content that needs structured data enhancement.

Google will also help you test out your current schema content with their structured data tester.

Tracking and Optimizing

Probably the most important step is to properly track and optimize your answers moving forward. The questions should remain the same. However, the answer to a question oftentimes requires a lot more depth and can evolve over time.

Everyone is short on time so make the most of your efforts. Use Google Search Console to track which questions are performing the best. Then focus your time on making these answers for these questions even better.

Example of search queries from Google Search Console. Note that the permalink slug contains “question” because this content was set up as a WordPress custom post type. This makes it easy to separate out this specific content in analytics.

Typically, you’ll see impressions for content first as a leading indicator. If clicks don’t follow within a month or so, check your CTR (click-through rate).

If the CTR is less than 1% for a specific article, look to improve your meta title and description. They need to grab the reader’s attention.

Also as important, the content of the article needs to deliver. If you’re trying to convince Google users to pick your article to read, make sure it meets or exceeds the reader’s expectations.

In Summary

FAQs can make for great content. They can improve your website’s user experience while building up your SEO traffic. The low time requirement and ability to address customer frustrations make

Just be sure to monitor how these questions do in Google Search Conosle. The real power of this SEO tactic comes from continually improving your content. Website content doesn’t have to be static.

Keep making improving and building out your answers. The goal is for these FAQs to eventually turn into bigger landing pages that can draw in a lot of search traffic

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Tyler Golberg

Tyler Golberg

I love writing about web design that inspires, figuring out Google's black box, and speaking to lively audiences. In my spare time, I enjoy reading Game of Thrones (waiting on Winds of Winter) and touring the lakes on my paddleboard.

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