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Even though FAQ pages are largely created for your website visitors, they can actually be some of the most helpful pieces of content on the web, even for searchers. Most people don’t consider this, though, and neglect to optimize them for search.
But just a few small optimizations can make your FAQ page much more likely to draw new traffic to your website. One of those SEO techniques, adding a form of HTML to your page called FAQ schema, gives crawlers more context for the page content. And when crawlers can better understand your content with schema, they’re more likely to reward you with higher rankings and bigger, more engaging search listings.
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What is FAQ schema markup?
FAQ schema markup is a type of structured data that makes your web page eligible to have a rich snippet in Google search engine results pages (SERPs). Rich results can have a positive impact on your digital marketing performance. This is because they help you stand out in the rankings.
Schema code for frequently asked questions helps improve user experience. It creates a simple 3-answer drop-down menu for the user to consider. This is just another way to convince users that your content provides what they need, and it offers it to them quickly and easily.
Why is FAQ page schema markup important for SEO?
FAQ rich snippets show users the answers to important questions without making them leave the results. At first, this might seem counterproductive to generating website traffic, but when you provide value to users on the SERP, you prove that you can provide even more value on your website. This can translate into a higher click-through rate (CTR).
While FAQpage schema data markup is helpful to users, it also helps Google. It improves the crawling process, which can lead to more accurate indexing. This can get your content in front of a more relevant audience, increasing your potential CTR.
Plus, most voice search answers are taken from rich results. FAQ pages are beneficial for Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri to return answers to users. This makes you more likely to rank for long-tail keywords, which are common for voice search queries.
It’s important to remember that adding schema to a poorly-crafted FAQ page likely won’t result in higher rankings. The content of your page is the most important part of getting it to rank well. That’s why your priority should be creating valuable and relevant web pages.
Schema should be a finishing touch on a great piece of content. Here are some tips for writing high-quality FAQ page content:
- Update the information regularly (if needed).
- Put the most important or common questions at the top of the list.
- Add a search feature.
- Simplify the way it’s organized by grouping it into different topics or sections with subheaders. You can also use numbers to list out the questions.
Check out this in-depth guide for more information on crafting the perfect FAQ section.
FAQ Schema markup examples
Because there are several ways to generate schema, the source code can vary. While some websites write text including the questions and answers, others add drop-down menus, colors, and extra details.
These and other elements impact how the source code looks. Here are a couple of examples of how FAQ schema markup may look on the page, in the background, and on SERPs.
- CDC’s “COVID-19: Frequently Asked Questions” page:
Here is what the schema markup looks like for this FAQ page:
And this is what the rich snippet for the page looks like:
2. AMC Theaters FAQ Page:
Here is the source code for the page which is created using microdata:
And this is what the rich snippet looks like:
3. Idaho Department of Labor: Unemployment Insurance FAQ Page:
This is what the source code looks like for the beginning of the FAQ section:
And here is the rich snippet for the page:
How to add schema markup to an FAQ page
To avoid mistakes, add schema markup in steps. As you go through each step, check your work before moving on to the next one. This will save you time on the backend trying to figure out which area of the code needs revision.
Once you’ve finished writing and adding your schema, use testing tools to make sure it’s correct. The final checks are important for having a markup that works. After inspecting and validating the code, it’s only a matter of letting crawlers analyze and process the page.
Add the required properties
Schema markup is added by inputting code within the headers on your website. Through this process, you break the content down into small, recognizable pieces. These tags, known as “properties,” define bits of the text so that crawlers can understand their meaning.
With over 1400 available schema properties, not all will be relevant to your pages. In fact, when it comes to Q&A schema, there are only four required properties. They include:
- mainEntity: The primary content on a web page–in this case, a list of questions.
- Accepted answer: The correct answer to the question (defined by the schema type “Answer,” can be found here).
- Name: The question itself (written out in full).
- Text: The full answer to a question.
Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool checks whether or not your markup is compliant with schema.org’s standards. Having the correct properties is crucial to your schema’s functionality.
Without these components, the search engine won’t create a rich snippet for the page. You can view more FAQ properties at: https://schema.org/FAQPage.
There are three main formats for adding these properties to your content. The best practice is to pick just one of the methods. If you try to use more than one, you can make errors that cost you time and incorrect markup.
Get help with your FAQ page markup schema
Want to understand how FAQ schema improves your SEO? Talk to a proven SEO consultant.
Microdata is a markup language made up of HTML tags that are embedded into your existing content. From a technical standpoint, this format is slightly more complex to write. That’s because it directly impacts the rest of the code around it. Here is an example of microdata FAQ markup:
Google prefers JSON-LD code over microdata. That is because it is easier to add or delete. Here is a basic example of how this structured data looks:
FAQ Schema generator
If you want some help, consider using an FAQ schema generator. It has a template where you can input the different properties. Next, it automatically formats the markup, so you don’t have to. Then all you have to do is copy and paste the output into your website’s source code. Here are some options:
- SEO Smoothie
- SEO Review Tools FAQ Schema Generator
- FAQPage JSON-LD Schema Generator
- FAQ Schema Generator Tool
- NEO Center
Google Tag Manager is a helpful, free tool that can help you easily manage schema. You can find a step-by-step tutorial for using this tool here.
Google has established content guidelines for generating FAQ-rich snippets. To get a rich result, your FAQ content should:
- Be a list of questions with answers
- Have only one markup for any duplicated questions
- Include comprehensive text for both the questions and answers
- Be visible to users
- Have all of the required properties
It should not:
- Have a forum where users can submit responses to questions
- Be used for advertising purposes
- Include explicit, illegal, or hateful content
According to these guidelines, you shouldn’t use FAQPage schema on product pages. This markup is only intended for content with single questions and answers. If your page has an open-ended structure where users can submit alternative answer text, these tags won’t work. Instead, you should use QAPage markup.
If you don’t follow Google’s guidelines, you won’t be able to generate rich results. You should always make sure that your pages are in compliance before you test and publish them.
Validate your code
If you struggle to implement code, use the Google Rich Results Test. It will tell you if there are any errors in your schema.
You can input either the specific URL or the source code to test. When you’ve added the schema markup correctly, this test will actually show you what the FAQ-rich result will look like on the SERPs. After the code is validated, you can start to publish your content.
Deploy your pages
Once you think your schema is ready, deploy some of the finished pages. Then, go to the URL Inspection tool, where you can inspect how the page looks. You enter the page’s URL and press “continue” to view a rendering of how Googlebot sees the content.
If you notice any issues, check to see whether the page is blocked by a robots.txt file. You should also eliminate any noindex tags or login requirements that may be blocking Google’s access to the page. Once you’ve troubleshot any issues, send a request asking Google to recrawl the updated URLs.
Keep Google informed of future changes
Whenever you update your content, submit a sitemap to Google. This ensures that crawlers can find any new pages, or changes to your pages while keeping accurate records of past content. You can upload an XML sitemap at any time through the Google Search Console dashboard.
Best SEO plugins for FAQpage schema markup
There are several search engine optimization (SEO) plugins that you can use to simplify the FAQpage schema markup process. Many marketers use these within their WordPress sites to optimize FAQ pages quickly and efficiently. Here are some of the most highly-rated options:
- WP FAQ Schema Markup
- Yoast SEO
- Schema and Structured Data for WP & AMP
- Schema Pro
- FAQ Schema for Pages and Posts
If you struggle with technical tasks or need help double-checking your work, these tools come in handy. They also automate some of the work so that adding FAQ schema is even easier.
Get a complimentary SEO audit
Securing more real estate in search results can be difficult, but it’s more possible with FAQ schema markup. When you incorporate FAQ schema on a page, you help crawlers better understand its contents. Follow search engine guidelines, implement schema correctly, and use SEO plugins to ensure that this structured data pushes your FAQ pages closer to the top of the SERPs.
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