JSON Rich Snippets Schema

How to Obtain Google Answer Boxes in Search

How to Provide Answers Visible in the Google Quick Answer Box Search Results

Updated 8.25.2022

We are seeing a substantial rise in the number of Quick Answer Boxes served up by Google in search engine result pages (SERPs). This is about answering the user intent faster and is changing the scope of what defines SEO.

Google Answer Boxes help businesses provide immediate answers. Google’s quick answers try to match a search query directly on the results page to offer the individual conducting the search query an immediate and highly visible result that works across all devices. This opportunity offers businesses a chance to leap forward and gain success in SERPs that display immediate answers. By using microdata and JSON-LD markup, you can improve your chances to have your answers to user’s questions more visible.

What are Google Answer Boxes?

Answer boxes offer users immediate and easy-to-digest answers at the top of the search results with relevant information without the need to click and navigate to another website. The answers provided are pulled from high-ranking sites that Google trusts to offer the best and most accurate response.

Google answer boxes were first introduced in September of 2014 and are based on the Google Knowledge Graph. If we examine which sites are getting into the Google Answer Box, it seems to be determined based on the form of content created. Long-form content is not ideal for the Answer Box. Classification of data needs to be easily digestible by search machines, which schema structured data helps to accomplish. Pages that Google tends to choose for quick answers are high-authority pages with quality, well-structured and marked-up content that is clearly relevant and prepared to offer for a great user experience.

One factor that jumps out – Google rewards organized, easily accessible data on web pages that garner happier users. Staying on the sharp learning curve of SEO best practices for structured data can help you show up in Knowledge Graph-powered results and gain these coveted quick answer spots.

How do Google Answer Boxes Differ From Other Featured Snippets?How Google Answer Boxes Differ From Other Featured Snippets

Google is treating this feature a little different nowadays from when it first appeared. Initially, there was an outcry from some search professionals that felt the originator of the answer wasn’t given due credit. So, now Google provides a link at the bottom of the Answer Box to the source of the content when it is specific and has pulled information from another site. Often there is no image pulled; it is an undiluted simple and clear answer to a specific search query, often on relying on voice technology

JSON-LD answer schema will help surface your content more often.

Place an emphasis on the questions prospective buyer’s need answers for in their purchasing journey. Test and correct Product Schema. Use provided by

They are frequently more powerful. We are seeing click-through rates (CTR) between 15 to 30% on the link provided at the conclusion on the Answer Box. Even branded results typically don’t achieve such a high click-through rate, which highlights how success it can be to get into this form of a search result. Improved click-through rates lead to higher conversion rates and an increase in business revenue. So with such favorable CTR’s from Google Quick Answers, this feature can be identified as very desirable. The way to get in the Answer Box is primarily comes from one aspect – it is awarded to the site offering the best answer. This is what Google algorithm updates are about. We anticipate that the Google Helpful Content Update will reward valuable answer content.

The saying that “Traffic is vanity; conversions are sanity” is often heard now. And these immediate answers to questions asked online are proving valuable to site conversions.

This article on Google Answer Boxes endeavors to help webmasters, SEO professionals and business owners get motivated and use current SEO structured data markup:

a. Improve existing web content contained in featured results

b. Provide a better layout structure for the answer provided.

c. Generate a new Quick Answer from current ranking content that falls short of providing results pages with an answer box.

So, you may be asking if the location of the searcher has any bearing on what triggers an answer box.

Searchers Proximity Influences Whose Answer Gains Position O

One of the Google local guides or an SEO specialist may help your business seek position O in organic search results.

In organic search results, many answers are served up based on geolocation, meaning that the proximity of the person seeking an answer matters to the search engine service up optional answers. Here is where the Local Pack is elbowing in and commands a large and highly visible box with a map and typically three business listings with possible answers. Healthcare business profiles are especially in high demand.

The common terminology among search marketers has referred to these boxes that appear first at the beginning of the textual organic search results in Google as in “Position Zero”. Yet if you are reading results in the Google Search Console about your datasets, you may find the same search position identified as “1”.

Trusted sites win answer boxes in the top position in search results more often.

If Google is going to offer a searcher that trusts its search engine viable answers to their search intent, they want to be a trusted entity. So as a search engine it seeks to discern who is a trusted source to pull answers from. It leverages it’s linking data metrics, which are similar to PageRank and focus largely on mobile search results. Majestic SEO scoring metrics offer clarity on why the domains that appear in answer boxes are chosen more frequently than others.

“The average for both trust and citation flow for these top answer box domains is over 80 out of a possible 100. This means the Flow Ratio (CF/TF) is about two times better than the average”, according to Ryan Heuser, Product and Technical Services Manager at seoClarity. In his 2018-01-21 Google Answers Your Queries artilce, Heuser also observed that “over 65% of queries that display answer boxes contain between 3-5 words”.

Interesting Statistics and Finds that Impact Google Quick Answer Boxes

In addition to the rise of People Also Ask boxes in SERPs, Related Questions are commanding a lot of search real estate.

New ways continue to surface to win in Google SERP visibility and clicks. Here are a few helpful statistics.

Keith Goode: – 10.2 of the search queries now have fewer than 10 results on page one. Rather, What is being pushed forward are news carousel results, universal results, the three-pack, the Google Knowledge Graph with featured snippets and instant answers.

Stat Search Analytics: – Of the sites gaining answer boxes, 9.28 percent of commercial SERPs had featured snippets.*****
– The volume of many queries was significant and had very high “SERP value” ([CPC x Annual Search Traffic]) of over US$1m+
– 3 variants of featured snippets: paragraph, list (both numbered and bulleted) and table snippets
– In 23 percent of SERPs with both a featured snippet and a “people also ask or” PAA, the first answer was identical.

According to, “The number of results that had an answer box went from just over 20% in December 2014 to more than 30% in May 2016.

Quick Answers facilitate Google’s attempt to improve in offering quality user experiences; your brand needs visibility in this area to remain relevant.

Keith Goode made the comment on Search Talk Live**, “I caution businesses from having a one-legged stool. Be in all of the areas that you need to be in order to drive traffic to yourself. Don’t just rely on your organic listing. Create content that really matters.”

Traditionally, many SEO’s approached creating a new web page from a keyword perspective. However, content writers should not be task-driven to write content around a keyword. Rather, find out what conversations are going on. Write content based on data insights indicating what answers people need. Don’t just fill in words around keywords. Supply what Internet users want. Today, semantic keyword mapping to content is more about mapping your website to tap into the intent of the web searcher who is showing buyer behavior.

Focus on answering people’s queries over aiming to please search engines. By providing original helpful content, you also increase your chances of showing up in Google Top Stories.

Which Domains are Getting in the Answer Box?

Sites with a higher trust factor and have over 10 000 referring domains comprise precisely one half of all domains that earned answer boxes according to Razvan Gavrilas notes that a significant difference is found with a lot more answers (twice the number) achieved by domains with between 1 and 5 000 referring domains versus those with between 5 and 10 000 referring domains.

“That may very well be, though, due to the arbitrary split or due to a lot of the values being around the cutoff point. Despite this, however, the 1 K mark is a fairly good predictor: more than 80% of all answers come from places that have 1 000 referring domains or more. But that means there’s still a reasonable chance of popping up in answer boxes even with less than that”, he assesses.

The research on YouTube URLs displaying with HTTPS status on desktop vary from the mobile YouTube URL (, which resulted in HTTP 99% of the time. Each one has a 301 to their HTTPS counterparts Razvan observes, “indicating answer boxes might not be updated often”. Being one of Google’s products, Android-powered mobile devices come with YouTube pre-installed, so, in this case would be less common.

A bit of the Quick Answer Feature’s History

Back in 2015, news about quick answers including the addition of Google showing action-oriented links, what we typically call calls-to-action, for some queries in the answers box displayed. Some paid marketers assessed that this happened more often for search queries that indicate an intent to purchase.

Google has placed a lot of effort into advancing the use of the Quick Answer box in SERPs over the past few months. It has evoked mixed reactions from SEOs who see both the possible threats and likely gains obtainable. It pays to understand this double-edged sword.

The Google Knowledge Graph is credited for many of these new components on a search results page; the quick answers box is just one of those newer opportunities to be right in front of online audiences. Semantic markup for your web pages like that provided by, is one tool most often used to communicate what your web pages are all about to search engines. This always follows the assumption that your webmaster has the basic SEO optimization tactics in place and correct.


QUESTION: What Does a Google Quick Answer Box Look Like?What does a Google Quick Answer Box look like?

ANSWER: Typically, the basic components that comprise a Google Answer Box are:

* Box outline

* Text

* Title

* Maybe an image


* Link: “About this result * Feedback”

QUESTION: What Triggers an Answer Box Being Display in SERPs?

ANSWER: While we may guess, it is best to use the answer provided by the search giant itself. “When a user asks a question in Google Search, we might show a summary of the answer in a special featured snippet block at the top of the search results page,” states Google ***.

• First find a popular question your that your ideal customers ask

Write an in-depth long-from article that answers this specific question

• Make it easy to read by providing a bulleted, step-by-step explanation

• Markup key aspects with relevant structured data

• After publishing, market this article to gain a solid backing with links and social signals

• Emphasize the author to leverage brand recognition

• Add schema Fact Check to show that the details in your article are factually supported.

Knowledge Graphs are now a fundamental component of semantic search and visible search results. Don’t delay optimizing for it.

QUESTION: How do I Gain a Google Answer Box?

ANSWER: To get a better understanding of how business gain this highlighted boxed result, Wayne Cichanski references the iQuanti study that found that “4-6 times the growth of keyword terms now triggering an Answer Box”. Research the SERPs to learn which forms of web content usually are found here.

This usually is structured in a definitional, concise, clear answer. Paragraph formats are the most common form of search answer box. While Google seems to prefer formatted tables or lists, it pulls from any existing website content; currently, it still will return a paragraph style answer boxes. Evaluate SERPs for the types of answer boxes and rich cards that you can find ranking for a specific search query to assess if users’ questions are best answered in a table, list, or other format.

In July 2022, Google added a new feature: Automated Messaging’s FAQ Feature in Google Business Profiles. Again, this underscores the high level of question answer needs in Google Search.

QUESTION: How are Google Quick Answers Effecting SERPs for Brands?

ANSWER: When the Quick Answers feature was first introduced, some SEOs speculated as to its impact and whether or not many users might feel they have their answer right there and see no need to click through to the web page. Google alone, as the major search player, is now rolling out something every few months that has potential implications on site traffic. Given that these answer boxes are displayed at the top of the page, they certainly nap attention.

“Wikipedia, for example, saw a drop in traffic that many attributed to the growth of Quick Answers. This is likely because the domain specializes in providing people with the type of rapid response that many can now receive right on the SERP,” states Search Engine Watch.

Jack Cooper offered some very good advice****: “Be sure to benchmark site performance before and after implementation and be wary of a reduction in user click-through rate. For example, a user may find your contact details without having to click-through to your site, which may result in fewer site visits. This can be seen as a positive as fewer clicks are required to access data, but be sure to research if that occurs to ensure there isn’t another issue.”

QUESTION: Why is Optimizing for Quick Answers in SERPs Important?

ANSWER: People want immediate answers and this offers what they want very quickly. As the focus in Google Search continues to be about rewarding the intent of the web searcher, Google Answer Boxes are increasingly being displayed and significant in SERPs. Businesses who lag in optimizing their web content to offer up Quick Answers have a good chance of coming in alongside better-prepared sites, which may mean losing key traffic to others in their niche.

That being said, the websites that we manage who are being awarded these valued answered boxes are enjoying awesome results. It is a unique SEO advantage that small business can use.

QUESTION: Does my Website need to be Highly Ranked in SERPs?

ANSWER: Yes, it is nice when GoogleBot doesn’t always favor sites in the number one position. We see them being pulled more from the best answer result within options versus the top position, although most quick answers seem to come from the first page of results or those within the top 5 results.

This appears to be a Google Answer Box, but what is surprising is that I DID NOT ask a question. I simply searched for “Google AdWords latest updates”, and immediately after a paid ad, an answer appears with the typical answer box frame and contains the latest posts from on the topic. I would have expected Google’s own page listing it latest updates for AdWords. This proves the reach and value of optimizing your site for chances to get into this highly visible form of a SERP feature.

If reaching a #1 ranking seems to elude your site, the good news is that websites ranked in positions third or fourth are frequently awarded an answer box and are enjoying being catapulted front and center in this super visual search result display. Even the font size that Google uses within the answer box is larger than typical results, which successfully commands the user’s attention to recognize it and can have a very positive impact on your site’s success in gaining relevant clicks.

Which Domains are Getting in the Answer Box

Sites with a higher trust factor and have over 10 000 referring domains comprise precisely one-half of all domains that earned answer boxes according to Razvan Gavrilas notes that a significant difference is found with a lot more answers (twice the number) achieved by domains with between 1 and 5 000 referring domains versus those with between 5 and 10 000 referring domains.

“That may very well be, though, due to the arbitrary split or due to a lot of the values being around the cutoff point. Despite this, however, the 1 K mark is a fairly good predictor: more than 80% of all answers come from places that have 1 000 referring domains or more. But that means there’s still a reasonable chance of popping up in answer boxes even with less than that”, he assesses.

QUESTION: How Often are Quick Answers Showing Up in SERPs?

ANSWER: “Within the sub-set of 2,000 How-To phrases, 60% produced Quick Answers, contributing to 84% share of voice with Quick Answer boxes for the main site and 98% including supporting sites,” according to Kirill Kronrod, a senior global SEO manager at Adobe Systems. Your chances to show up depend on having your technical SEO correct.

How Google ranks a web page is changing. Today, we hear more about the level of user engagement once on a particular web page for becoming a bigger factor. User reaction and onsite interactions are a huge elements of what affirms the value of your content. When users stay on a webpage, take action, or navigate to another page on your site in a manner that portrays interest, your site may be attributed as an authoritative resource for the search terms that initially generated the site visit.

QUESTION: What About The Call-To-Action Link In Google Answers?

ANSWER: While it’s still a bit early to tell what may be prompting this, it seems logical that domains that are already trusted and have pages that rank high merit being favored.

“Page authority plays a significant role in being featured as a call-to-action link; top landing pages usually perform best, which is closely related to authority. The quantity and quality of links is a tipping point for deeper pages being featured. The presence of a “download” link on the page is not an influencer in some cases,” according to Columnist Jim Yu of BrightEdge.

Craft your new web content with a view of what your readers need to make a clear decision. When your product or services fit the world of urgent responses, such as those in medical practice, police protection, online sites staying up, etc., makes this an even higher SEO priority. Then track each page’s performance in your Google Search Console. If you show up in People Also Search For Google SERPs, you can gain a link there too.

QUESTION: What does the Quick Answer Feature Necessitate for Mobile Marketers?

ANSWER: It’s critical in today’s competitive arena for digital success that marketers think about the context of their customer on the path to purchase: how fast do they need an answer, where they are searching from, what device they’re typically using, what their likely mindset is in that given micro-moment to engage them. Time pressure is an important factor for marketers to consider in the mix of prioritizing SEO tasks, as there are many, optimizing your top service and product pages for Google Quick Answer Boxes is particularly true for markets that offer solutions when immediacy in a key factor.

User decisions made on mobile devices fit the demand for on-the-go answers. Be there in the moment and you may well find that these individuals behind a search query are less likely to consider a larger number of options and product choices. Marketers should take this into account and aim to help people reach the quick answer that still provides the key factors for their decisions.

QUESTION: Which Business Sites Are Being Found in Quick Answers?

ANSWER: Notable commonalities that sites who have gained the answer box tend to share:

* Sites that have technical SEO issues resolved.

* Sites with web content that gains strong user engagement.

* Sites that offer content crafted to answer frequently asked questions.

* Sites that have a good page load speed.

* Sites that are position well in SERPs and serve up location specific answers.

* Sites with a higher percentage of “how to” keywords.

* Sites that Google has attributed a level of trust to that has a sufficient level of referring domains.

* Sites that are already featured in Wikipedia

Google’s Mobile-first index surfaces Google Now Cards that rely more on-site versions developed for mobile devices. When your website functions perfectly on a computer and remains difficult to use it on a smartphone, then most likely your mobile SEO rating will tank and you’ll miss some visibility in featured snippets.

Hill Web Marketing prioritizes site optimization for mobile phones. Load speed and how easy a site is to use are critical. One tool that is helpful for market research is SEOlium. Every business that wants to expand needs to monitor their niche market and use data insights to understand where top grow opportunities exist.

QUESTION: Are Google Answer Boxes Expanding to Include Video?

The demand for fast, relevant answers found in trusted digital content has sky-rocketed upwards along with the increased use of mobile devices. Here is what the answer that I just got for “How to beat an egg?”

Wikipedia*** says, “Google provides an incentive system to motivate people to answer questions. It is based on assigning points for actions and a system of levels loosely based on the Russian system of academic degrees. An interesting feature of the incentive system is that Google’s reward for visiting is higher than for posting an answer.”

Today the new push is for website owners to answer user’s questions so GoogleBot can pull answers from indexed content and serve them up in nifty quick answer box format. The whole science of how Google search works centers around when someone asks Google a question, and they instantly obtain an answer in SERPs. But a lot happens in the fraction of seconds between the time a search query was entered and when the searcher sees their quick answer in an outlined box format. Google offers a page on “How Search Works” that helps when attempting to follow the entire life of a search query, from the web, to crawling, indexing after a site search, to algorithmic rankings, and serving up quick answers, to fighting webspam. Google algorithms are constantly updated after being tweaked and tested. We can expect to see the Google commercialized answer box search algorithm continues to evolve. Providing super-quick answers to question like search queries with obvious needs for a single, specific answer remains a Google priority.


* Try to format your web content is the best possible manner to have a chance for results that could be chosen for the Answer Box.

* Google is more inclined to award sites that are marked-up with schema structured data code

* Start by optimizing your best content for Quick Answers.

* If you use additional markup on list items, like an h3 or h4 to introduce it, that works like another signal to add a summary to the answer provided.

* Audit your schema markup to ensure that your pages are using the correct JSON-LD markup.

Quick Answers Help to Resolve Customer’s Time Pressures

Time pressures seem to be escalating the easier it is to access additional information online. Who can’t relate to a situation in which our need for an immediate response or answer exceeds the amount of time we think we have. This adds stress to the individual in need. To help online buyers and users better manage stress, these quick answer boxes are part of the digital solution and often found in Google Discover news feeds.

Time pressure narrows a prospective buyer’s focus, giving you and your message only a brief moment to nab their attention and be the business with the solution. When Internet users feel the crunch of time, they tend to focus primarily on the critical information needed for a decision and under-weighted all other criteria.

In another example of attention narrowing, consider if you are at a loved one’s bedside in the middle of the night and want to check the reviews and availability of drug stores open in your area where you can fill a prescription. Given the late hour and urgency, your decision of where to fill may be more deliberate than if they weren’t having medical symptoms at the moment. More often than desktop searchers, mobile device users seek quick, decisive information that appears authority and correct enough to offer a level of confidence needed to get things done and move on. Optimize to meet specific user search intent where your business provides the best answer.

Quick Answers are Frequently Medical Search QueriesQuick Answers are Frequently Medical Search Queries

Currently, many of the search queries that are being answered in this manner are medically related search queries.

How to – “How to know when to go into the doctor?” or “How to eat to prevent cancer?”

What is – “What is the best way to stop a nose bleed?” or “What is the difference between Cerebrum and Cerebellum?”

How do – “How do I treat a severe headache?” or “How do I prevent foot cramps?”

Technical SEO Correctness Becomes More Important

Google is shrinking search results. Maybe that is due to an increase in smaller devices being used by web surfers. It may also be driven by an intent to reduce the amount of low-quality web content and duplicate content that has flooded too many SERPS. Google’s goal is to offer what does a better job of satisfying the searcher’s query and to reduce much of the rest that clutters and dilutes search results. And the search giant may be becoming more picky and preferring sites whose technical aspects of their structured data markup are correct.

Technical SEO optimization is becoming more essentials. “Use schema markup to increase visibility for your site. The schema was developed as means of providing search engines with an optimal look at your site. It will help the search engines quickly interpret your material, which will aid Google in its quest to quickly pull answers from websites,” says Stone Temple Consulting.

“Adobe has shown a 17% incremental lift on topics on which it has secured the Quick Answer box, so the results contribute
millions of additional visitors to Within the sub-set of 2,000 How-To phrases, 60% produced Quick Answers, contributing to 84% share of voice with Quick Answer boxes for the main site and 98% including supporting sites.” – Kirill Kronrod

“Time pressure narrows the consumer’s focus, giving the marketer only a brief moment to grab their attention and direct their choices. It’s critical for marketers to be there with their product or message when people are making decisions.” – Dan Ariely of Duke University

“The truth is, good or evil, it seems there to stay whether you like it or not, so your site is either in an answer box (earning more visibility and clicks) or below it (having even fewer chances to get at least any attention).” – Internet Marketing Ninjas*

“Being on the Google’s answer box will do you a big favor, making you appear on Google’s first page not once, but twice. So it’s not just showing up in the results, it’s showing up in the answer box, which has a different status in the mind of the searcher. Being there can get a lot of SERP “landscape”, especially if you own some important keywords in your niche.” – Cognitive SEO

Hill Web Creations’s owner, Jeannie Hill, is passionate to provide clients with better results for businesses to obtain Google Quick Answer Boxes, search engine optimization, and PPC advertising. My business location is in the Minneapolis, Minnesota area, where I offer digital marketing services to local businesses as well as national sites. AEO services start at $1,500 per month (Offer expires 7.31.2023).

Services to Help YOU get in Google Quick Answer Boxes

Jeannie Hill of Hill Web Marketing is passionate about helping small business compete and win in visible search results by gaining a presence in Google Quick Answer Boxes. Empower your site visitors with an improved user experience by helping them quickly navigate to your relevant web pages from a Google quick answer box.

Hill Web Marketing continues to research how Google’s logic for ordering which search queries display answer boxes and Google rich card results. As the frequency of answer boxes fluctuates, we are noting which URL is displayed on which device and observing data that reveals the average search volume of each answer. Because it meets immediate search intent, it’s fascinating to see how search bots are evolving to provide trusted answers even faster.

This is a burgeoning form of semantic search that benefits your digital marketing efforts.


Congratulations if you have made a decision to implement new structured data on your site. It gives you more control to create a much better experience for your site visitors at different stages of the buyer’s journey. Search intent differs from user to another search user and even the same individual at different stages in developing online relationships. And today’s searchers want factual content; we know how to support your content with FactClaim schema.

Visible data presented in a Google Quick Answer Result is so easy to read and engage, it is a very simplistic form of an answer. Some question who benefits from these immediate answers and if they should regard them as an enhancement to results pages. Make it a part of your E-Commerce SEO Product markup to answer consumes’ questions. FAQ schema can be nested within your product pages.

As the news and adoption of this added feature spreads, more and more businesses are optimizing for answer inclusion in the Knowledge Graph in general, with the goal of also gaining higher visibility in Google’s Quick Answers. To step out in as a leader in your niche, we can help you get started today!

We welcome your questions, experiences in generating quick answer boxes, and comments.

Take action and learn more about our Marketing Services to Gain Success In SERPs by Generating Leads



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