You may already know the benefits of Q&A schema, as well as how to implement it.
(And if you don’t, you can learn all about it on our blog: How to Use Q&A and FAQ Schema Markup.)
But what about optimizing your questions and answers? Here are some tools and tactics for discovering the right questions to answer — every time.
SEO Tools to Help You Find the Questions Your Audience Is Asking
There are plenty of SEO tools to go around for you digital marketing aficionados.
Some are free to use while others cost money, so it’s up to your preferences and what your budget can handle. We’re dishing out a handful of options in each category so you can find the right SEO tools that will help you figure out what inquiries your users are making. Armed with that info, you can find the best questions for SEO schema.
Free SEO Tools for Q&A Schema Optimization
Let’s start with the freebies…
- Google Search Console: If you want to see which questions are leading people to your site, Google Search Console is a good place to start. It’s not exactly automated, though. You need to search the six question terms (who, what, where, when, why & how — thanks, elementary education) on the platform to acquire results. Use a spreadsheet application to help you sift through your findings.
- People Also Ask & Related Queries: Once you have some questions to start with, you can actually head to the SERP for that question and investigate the “People Also Ask” and “Related Queries” sections. Consumers use this in real time, so it’s a good place to see for yourself what is going on behind the SEO scenes.
- Google Trends: The power of Google Trends is real. It may not deliver questions word for word, but you can use this platform to deduce common questions from the top related terms and use these for your Q&A schema purposes.
- Alsoasked: With a tagline that reads “discover the questions people are asking,” it’s no wonder this website landed on our list tools for finding the best questions for Q&A schema. On the website, choose your region, language, and term and you’ll unearth a whole slew of questions geared in the right direction. The results are pretty visually appealing, too, which means you can incorporate them into proposals, presentations and meetings if need be.
- Quora: One user-generated website that’s valuable for developing Q&A schema is Quora. In fact, the entire basis of Quora is asking and answering questions.
- Reddit: Depending on your industry, Reddit could prove to be a valuable tool for finding questions. The latest statistics land in 2018, when there were 138,000 active subreddits. Find relevant subreddits and you’ll likely see a sidebar with an FAQ section.
Paid SEO Tools for Q&A Schema Optimization
As for those paid tools…
- SEMrush: We’ve talked about SEMrush before, and for good reason. It’s a smart platform with a holistic keyword research approach. In fact, you can isolate questions within the framework, making it even more effective for the specific purpose of optimizing Q&A schema. Choose the “questions” button when filtering your search to acquire these results. Their pricing starts at $99.95 monthly.
- Moz: Moz also includes the option to filter keywords by questions. If you choose to invest in this platform, make sure to utilize this feature to your advantage. Their pricing starts at $99 monthly (or $79 per month if you book for the whole year).
- Ahrefs: Ahrefs is another paid platform that offers the option to filter keywords by questions. Their pricing starts at $99 monthly (or a seven-day trial for $7) for one user seat.
- Answer the Public: This one used to be in the free category, but the website has moved over to paid (but you can try a few searches for free). Such is life. They call themselves a “search listening tool”. Enter a topic, brand or product into the search bar and see the results flow. Their pricing starts at (you guessed it) $99 monthly. Here’s an example of one search for the term “dog trainer”:
- Keywordtool: For access to SEO keywords, questions and prepositions, Keywordtool Their pricing starts at $69 monthly, making it slightly more affordable than some of the other options on the market.
- Stat: If you don’t want to manually scour the “People Also Ask” boxes on every Google SERP known to human, Stat is for you. View their report types to conjure up big data that serves your purposes. At $720 monthly, their pricing is pretty hefty, so it’s better suited for larger businesses looking to develop Q&A schema at scale.
Use FAQ Schema to Capitalize On Questions
SEO tools aren’t the only way to optimize your site with Q&A schema. There are some tactics, too — the first of which is using FAQ schema to your advantage.
Despite a recent drop in the prevalence of FAQ rich results on Google search pages (most likely due to the fact that Google wanted to clear up their SERPs instead of automatically showing all FAQs), FAQ schema is still relevant. Using the questions you find via SEO tools and incorporating them into this schema will still increase your odds of ranking in the SERPs.
FAQs don’t have to live solely on the frequently asked questions page on your website. Letting these questions mingle with the rest of your site is a smart move. That’s not to say you should spam your site with it — make sure these questions and answers are relevant and valuable to your user. In the end, Google’s algorithm will know.
PRO TIP: When implementing FAQ schema, incorporate internal links into your answers. If you don’t, you’re missing an awesome opportunity to drive traffic to other pages.
Add the Questions Right On Your Page
You can actually weave your most valuable questions right onto your website pages. And you don’t necessarily need to answer them, either.
When it comes to blog posts for any industry, ask questions that your readers can answer in the comments. This serves a duplicate purpose of promoting engagement, as well. The same goes for websites with forums or other types of message boards. Build the conversation and keep it flowing.
PRO TIP: For comments and forums, moderation is your friend. Google avoids sites with spammy, irrelevant or unhelpful commentary.
Implement Your Q&A Schema On Your Google My Business Page
Google My Business has a lot of perks, especially for local businesses. If your customers are asking particular questions about your business, you can actually upload them to the Q&A section here and have your business answer them.
Use a Gmail account to upload the questions, then use your business account to answer them.
Here’s an example of a Q&A section for a HomeGoods in Reading, Massachusetts (the second answer should give you a good chuckle).
FAQs about Optimizing Q&A Schema
See what we did there? Ba-dum-chh.
Q: What is Q&A schema?
A: If your page has a question as well as a way for users (or readers, or consumers) to answer that question, you’ve got Q&A schema.
Q: Do you have to use microdata to implement Q&A schema?
Q: Does Q&A schema affect voice search results?
A: Likely, yes. And if not now, it probably will in the future.
Don’t forget to head over to our blog on how to use Q&A and FAQ schema markup for a deeper dive into the subject. Did we miss anything on optimizing Q&A schema for search engines? Let us know in the comments below!