If you have ever searched for something or asked Google a question you may have seen a box at the top of the first page and wondered what this is and how do you position your business there ahead of the other rankings.
This section is commonly referred to as the Google Answer Box or sometimes called Position Zero (Position #0), as it comes ahead of the ranked searches.
See the example below:
By managing to position webpages in this box you instantly get searchers’ attention and, in most cases, will ensure you are the first link clicked – leading to higher conversion rates and greater brand visibility.
Information displayed in this box can come in the form of paragraphs, lists, graphs or tables lifted directly from a website.
The information inside the box is usually determined by its relevance to the query that was Googled and a website’s existing Search Engine Results Page (SERP) position, which is often seen as an indicator of ‘trustworthiness’.
With this being the case, what are some of the tips and tricks that businesses can use to secure this top position on Google?
Target longer keywords
Keywords are integral to the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) process, but when it comes to Google Answers you need to consider long-tail-keywords.
These are keywords or phrases that are more specific than more commonly searched for keywords. By including these phrases, it helps lengthier search queries to identify potential Answer Box results.
Typically, they are three to six words long and will often mirror potential queries. For example, rather ‘capital gains guide’ it might be ‘how to record and pay capital gains’.
To help with this, you should look at to the ‘related searches’ and ‘people also ask’ sections of existing SERPs on similar topics to get an idea of what Google is looking for.
This can help you to create or prepare content that Google’s algorithms identify as related to the topic you want to target and will help your website to feature in the Google Answer Box.
Pose the question
Unsurprisingly, around 41 per cent of Answer Box content contains a question similar to the query searched.
With this being the case, you should look to format content in a question and answer format to help your chances of making it in the Google Answer Box.
This could mean amending existing or new blogs and content in a Q&A style or including information in an FAQ format.
To help your chances you should ensure some of your content creates clearly defined questions with a straightforward, easy-to-understand answer.
As with regular keywords and phrases, the higher up the page the content is, the greater the chance of the page being ranked. Therefore, if possible, try and pose a question and provide an answer within the first sentence if you can.
Again, to improve your chances, try and keep your responses brief and to the point. You can then expand on the topic further down the page. As with other pages, using keywords within frequent headers on a page will help Google make sense of the topics the site covers.
To help with content creation, look at existing Google Answer Box content and think about how you can mirror or replicate it for your chosen topic.
It’s not just about the text
While the text you include is important for Google Answers, so is the supporting content you offer on a page.
The Box can come in many forms, and the algorithm likes to favour particular information formats, such as lists, graphs, and tables.
These often give simple answers or solutions to complex queries, fulfilling the purpose of Google Answers.
If you use a WordPress site you can easily create tables and graphs using the various plugins available, which have often been developed with Google SEO in mind.
Don’t forget the basics
While the SEO approach for Google Answers does differ somewhat from most normal rankings, businesses must not forget the basics of SEO.
They should, first and foremost, look to create a page that ranks well generally, rather than just solely focusing on getting in the box.
That means including your keywords in titles, descriptions, and content, properly using categories and tags, as well as ensuring the page has reliable internal and external backlinks from trusted websites.
Seek out someone who has the answers already
Achieving a ranking in Google Answers can take time and patience. Without seeking professional advice, it may just be a case of trial and error until you hit position zero.
However, if you decide to work with SEO specialists, such as our team, we can help conduct the necessary research and ensure your site and content meet as many of the criteria in advance.
To find out how we can improve your chances of getting in the Google Answer Box, please speak to JE Consulting.