How To Use Technical SEO To Optimize For People Also Ask

What Is The 'People Also Ask' Box In Google?

The People Also Ask (PAA) box is a feature of Google's Search Engine Results Page. It comes with a set of questions related to the search query.

For instance, if you search for a question in Google, you will have four more questions with answers in the search results.

For instance, if you search "What is SEO?" you will also have the following questions −

  • What is SEO, and how it works? What is SEO, in simple words?

  • What are the four types of SEO?

  • What is SEO in marketing?

To get the answer, you only have to click on the question. Then the box will expand, and you will get a text snippet. The answer is limited to a few words. So, if you want to know more, you must visit the page. The link to the page is located right below the answer.

As stated above, the People Also Ask (PAA) box comes with four additional questions relevant to the question asked. However, once you click on one question, two or more questions appear on the page. PAA boxes are indefinite and ever-expanding. So, one question can lead to even more than 100 questions.

Being featured in the PAA box in Google is a testament to quality. It gives you a solid edge over your competitor. As a result, you will get more traffic.

Format of Queries Featured in PAA Boxes

The most common queries that can get you featured in PAA boxes start with the following −

  • What

  • Why

  • When

  • Where

  • Who

According to SEMrush, queries starting with the above terms have an 86% chance of triggering a PAA in Google.

Can Following The Format Only Get You Featured in PAA Boxes in Google?

PAA data suggest structuring your content can help you get featured in Google. It means you must include content in the query format. However, sometimes it doesn't matter if your content is good quality.

For Example

Website A has a page with content starting with a query like, "What is 'People Also Ask in Google.'

However, its answer is not up to the mark. Let's 'say the page has less authority. In such a case, it may not get featured in PAA.

Website B has a solid, crisp, easy-to-read answer to the above question. However, the headline doesn't is written in question format. Even then, google may feature the answer if the answer is written below the headline "People Also Ask Meaning."

So as you can see, format alone cannot get you in the PAA box. Lots of factors come into place. This includes the quality and structure of the content. The primary factor is getting the HTML headings right.

How Technical SEO Helps Your Page Get Featured in The People Also Ask (PAA) Box?

Now that we have covered the content aspects of the PAA let's focus on the technical part. Yes, technical SEO plays a significant role. You can leverage specific technical SEO strategies to boost your chances of getting featured in the PAA box.

Use a Position-Tracking Tool

Not every keyword triggers a PAA. You can use the Position Tracking tool like SEMrush to search for the right keywords. Make sure to use filters and choose the PAA feature while using the tool.

The tool helps you identify any missed PAA opportunities. The tool identifies keywords in your domain that already rank but not generating PAA results. Visit the page and check for the content structure. Change the structure according to the question format. Plus, make sure you put the answers right below the question.

Make Your Page Crawlable And Indexed

Sometimes you have high-quality content, yet the page won't rank or feature in PAA or rich snippets. This could probably be because Google couldn't crawl or index them. This happens when you exclude a page in robot.txt or put a no-follow tag. This stops Googlebot from crawling your page or indexing them.

With technical SEO, you can fix this error and ensure Googlebot can easily crawl your site.

Fixes Plagiarism Issues

Sometimes Google considers your page as plagiarism. It happens when your site is still running on HTTP. Your browser automatically adds https whenever someone visits your page. However, the main content link is under 'HTTP.' Your page is split into 'HTTP' and 'https.' This means Google will consider one page as plagiarism of others. As a result, your page won't appear in the search results.

With technical SEO, you can fix this issue. You can use 301 redirects to redirect Google to a new URL when it enters an old URL. This tells Google not to crawl url1 but crawl in url2.

Make a Roadmap For Search Engines For Your Site

You can use an XML sitemap to ensure search engines don't miss any important content on your site while crawling. You can categorize the content into posts, pages, tags, and other customized elements. It also includes the total images on your site, including their last modified date.

Generally, your site doesn't need an XML sitemap if it has an in-depth internal linking structure. However, not all sites have a perfect structure, and using an XML sitemap doesn't do any harm.


Technical SEO is a great way to get your content discovered in search engine results, but it’s important to remember that First and foremost, you must be making good content. However, when people are searching for answers to their queries through People Also Ask boxes, you want to make sure that your site’s visibility is optimized so that search engines can rank it higher and help your page show up in the display box. Utilizing the technical aspects of SEO such as metadata, headlines, keyword prioritization and optimization can help ensure that you stay one step ahead of the competition. Ultimately, if done correctly, technical SEO should provide both a better user experience for visitors coming from Google and Bing, as well as providing powerful returns in terms of organic services and engagement for your business.

Updated on: 14-Apr-2023


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