If you’re a “glass half full” type person, you know the Google Answer Box represents a huge marketing opportunity for your business. If you tend to be a more “glass half empty” type person, you are likely still struggling with how to overcome the SEO challenges to make the Google Answer Box work for you. Either way, we feel your pain. The world of Search Engine Optimization is always throwing us marketers another curve ball. We’ve tinkered around enough over the last couple of years to know these 8 optimization techniques work to get businesses top positioning in the Google Quick Answers box, so give them a whirl and enjoy the fantastic results!
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8 Ways To Optimize For The Google Answer Box
1. Implement schema markup code.
Schema.org markup code is what Google uses to gather context about your website content. According to Brafton, over one-third of search results (particularly Knowledge Graph and Answer Box entries) draw from Schema.org markup, but only 0.3 percent of websites use it. If you want to secure top positioning, ask your web developer to add tags for “rel=author” and “rel=publisher” in the HTML coding to let Google know the content is associated with a credible writer. Use Google’s structured data testing tool to test whether your schema implementation was successful or not.
2. Create in-depth quality content in response to a specific query.
What questions are being asked by your core audience? Have you created informative pages within your website to address these common concerns? Spending some time doing marketing research is worth your while (or hiring Mod Girl Marketing to help!) While there is no guarantee, publishing videos, articles, infographics and high quality images on your page will improve authority and ranking signals to give you a better shot at getting your content featured in a Quick Answers box.
We achieved #1 ranking plus Google Answer Box for our client Stride – by focusing on high quality, SEO friendly content for a global keyword – and beat out authority sites Forbes.com, Inc.com and Mashable.com.
Have you noticed that the Google Answers Box looks a lot like Wikipedia? That’s not by accident! Not only does the Answer Box feature take a page from the Wikipedia handbook, but Wikipedia entries also feature prominently in the search rankings. Wikipedia entries consistently rank in the top five search results — often in the second position. Wikipedia entries with citations to reliable sources like press releases, blogs or newspapers boosts credibility and search engine positioning considerably anyway, so it’s always good to create these entries anyway. Wikidata is another site you can update.
4. Get listed in Google Maps and Google+.
It’s no secret that Google rewards people who play by their rules and use the sites they own and operate. Setting up a Google+ listing for brick-and-mortar businesses, soliciting reviews and regularly updating your Google+ profile will increase your odds of getting noticed by Google. You want to be sure your Google+ links to all your active social media profiles and reflects a company that is flourishing and relevant, rather than stagnant and stale.
Long tail keywords is something we’ve long advocated for improving SEO. It’s not just a “best practice” anymore — but rather, a core foundation of smart search engine optimization. Long tail keywords help you dominate over the competition and rein in more targeted traffic, as well as get pages indexed by Google. You particularly want to use these long tail keywords in your title tags, meta descriptions, image tags, and URLs, as well as sensibly within the context of your articles or landing pages.
Try keywordtool.io to find unique keyword suggestions to create more focused content. Phrases like “When did,” “Where is,” “What is,” or “How much does” tend to appear in these quick answer boxes quite frequently. So if you provide a smart answer somewhere on your site that precisely correlates with what people are searching, you may have luck getting noticed in the top position. Keyword tools help you do your SEO homework smarter.
You may opt for the traditional FAQ page with all questions and answers on one page or you may segment out topics and themes with individual questions and answers featured on their own respective pages. “How to” pages with bullets or step-by-step formatting is another option for getting your content indexed.