How to get more SEO traffic by answering questions

Written by Nick Swan. Updated on 19, October 2020

Often during keyword research we focus on one or two word phrases, but more and more people are typing specific questions into Google.

'What is X for Y'
'How do you do Y with Z'
'Where can I find A?'

Google and more importantly users love to see these questions answered.

So which questions is your site appearing for?

From the main Launchpad in, select the site you wish to work with and then the Reports link from the left hand nav. From the reports screen select the 'Questions To Answer' link.

This reports on all the questions your site appears in Google for. 

Screenshot showing the Questions to Answer report

Screenshot showing the Questions to Answer report

A lot of these you might rank for by accident. You can find new questions to answer on your existing pages or find totally new content ideas. If you do accidentally rank for them - you can specifically target them and have a good chance of ranking well.

How to use this report

Take a look through the questions in the report, by default they are ordered by impressions so the most valuable questions with regards getting clicks will be at the top.

If you are getting nonsense questions, for example you are getting queries with the word 'wholesale' in because it contains the term 'who', you can filter those out using the options in the filter drop down.

Checking the questions

Now it's a case of going through the questions, and finding opportunities.

When you spot an interesting question - you have two options:

1, Include or improve the questions and answer on an existing page.

2, Create a new page on your site that has the question and answer on it.

Next to each keyword in the 2nd column of each row there is 3 icons.

The first icon will show you the ranking history for this phrase from data available in Google Search Console. You will also be able to see which pages currently rank for this phrase over the last 90 days.

The second icon will do a search on using the site:domain-name operator and the query. This will show you any pages on your site Google relates to the question.

Based on looking at current ranking pages - if the pages do not reference the question we are considering, you can either add it to one of the existing pages that rank, or if the question would be a large standalone topic by itself, consider creating a new page and linking related content together.

A few things to consider:

  • does the question/phrase complement the content on any of the current ranking pages?
  • do you answer the question/phrase already, just mixed in with other content. Could the article be re-written with the question/phrase as a heading?
  • can you write an entirely new article on the question/phrase

Once you find a question or phrase that you want to work on you can use the + (plus) icon to save it. This will save it to the 'Saved Ideas' area so you can easily find it at a later date.