How to rank in ‘People Also Ask’ Boxes

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Almost half of searches show PAA boxes. How they work. How to use them for getting better search results.

You must have used search engines umpteen times either to find a product, brand or service. After putting relevant keywords in the search box, did you notice what you get as the search result.

If not try now. Then come back to this page to finish this insightful blog. While going through the search result you must have seen People Also Ask boxes at the top. These are known as People Also Ask boxes.

Latest Study

According to a study published by ahrefs, 43% of search results come with People Also Ask boxes. This is based on a survey comprising of 147.8m US SERPs. Similar percentage has also been highlighted by SEMrush while sharing results of one of the studies that link SERPs with PAA boxes. The study was done by Olga Andrienko of SEMrush.

Start of PAA Box

PAA box was first introduced by Google in 20015. A question box relevant to the users’ query started opening on the main page of Google search results. Gradually it became more dynamic and was officially open for desktop and mobile search results.  It was officially announced by Mr Satyajeet Salgar of Google through his twitter handle.

Before we further explore its benefits let us first understand about PAA box. Following that we can discuss its features and the ways to rank in PAA boxes. This will help to understand its relevancy in improving any SEO drive.

The questions coming in PAA boxes also help to create LSI keyword ideas. This along with long tail keywords helps in bringing organic traffic. For those who don’t know LSI keywords, take for example you are talking about cars so in this case the LSI keywords can be vehicle, engine, road, tires, automobile etc.

What users get into a Paa box

Generally a PAA box includes three to four questions and when you open any of the questions it takes you to a clickable page providing you an immediate solution. But while doing so few more questions add to the PAA box. Look at each of the options available in the PAA box and click on any one of the them, a drop down box will open immediately offering you a solution with clickable link to the source page.

Most obvious characteristics of PAA boxes

  • The SERP position of PAA boxes are not fixed
  • Dynamic Loading: There are numerous questions that come into PAA boxes
  • There is no fix format for the PAA answers
  • PAA questions generally offer same answers

Fluctuating position of PAA boxes:

You might have seen featured snippets coming at the top of the search result, either on first or second position. But PAA boxes have no fixed position. Sometimes it may come at no two or three just below featured snippets.

The moment you change your search keywords, its position changes drastically and it may go down to 7th or last position.

Dynamic Loading: There are numerous questions that come into PAA boxes

The questions appearing in PAA boxes have almost no end to it. Click on one question to find the relevant answer and it will take you to more options where further questions will add to it.

To check it, just click on any one question. From 3-4 options, you will almost find endless options. Have a look below:

The dynamic loading feature helps users to search for more answers for queries which are relevant to their original search keywords. The increase in PAA questions is directly proportional to the users interactions. The more questions they click, the options adds in the original list.

There is no fix format for the PAA answers

There could be many options of PAA answers such as lists, paragraphs, tables and sometimes videos also appear. The way it is available in the above box.

PAA questions Generally offer same answers

Once a page is connected to PAA questions as the possible answer, you may try different questions but it will lead to the similar answer link. Though in some cases it may not turn out to be true but quite often different questions will take you to the same page link.  To understand it better, just check the above box

How to help your page land in the answer box of PAA 

The answer lies in simplicity. Answer as many questions as possible. Ensure that each question you are responding is replied in detail. Plain language is perfect for answering any question. Avoid falling into sales trap. Hard selling tone does not go well with readers. Add Q&A schema. In fact, FAQs format do well for users as well as search results.

Get advantage of the dynamic feature of PAA boxes. Its expanding nature clearly hints that adding follow-up questions and answers on the same page is a rationale idea. The questions listed there and the corresponding answers provide better insight about a particular industry and brand.

Answer questions to get featured in search engines. If you offer quality answers in plain languages, the chances are you get into Search engine’s answers and PAA box. Keep answers crisp and short. PAA boxes play critical role in the overall SEO strategies.

Hope this blog gave some wonderful insights about PAA boxes. If you liked reading it, don’t miss to drop your comments here. Kindly also mention what you would like to read in the next blog.

My commitment to bring researched, fact based and analytical analysis of any topic remains intact.

Happy Reading:)

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