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FAQ examples and best practices
When it comes to Frequently Asked Questions, you want to make sure you use the right phrasing for your FAQ questions and answers, but first, you must start with the right question. Have you asked your question in a way that a user might? Using conversational phrasing for your FAQ questions will make it easier for the user to find what they’re looking for and make a concept or issue seem solvable rather than out of reach. It will also help your website rank higher in terms of SEO, because search engines are increasingly rewarding common speech patterns. See the FAQ questions examples below to get up and running quickly.
Remember, if your FAQ mimics how people actually look for information, your FAQ will more likely be picked up by a search engine today–and that means more of your users will see it. Whether your website is informational, related to a product you sell, or related to a service that includes making reservations online, the right FAQ search keywords can boost your visibility. Phrasing your words well is only one part of the picture. You also need to structure your content for maximum searchability. Find out why also using the FAQ Schema is good business.
Below is a guide with FAQ questions examples for each website type:
What should be included in a FAQ?
Some points are important to touch on for every FAQ, whether it’s for an informational or an e-commerce site. For any website that offers user accounts, for example, making sure to include several common FAQ questions for websites that relate to accessing the account and adjusting security preferences is a good start.
How do you write a FAQ question?
To have a strong SEO rank for your FAQ search terms, it’s become increasingly important to phrase questions the way they would be most commonly asked by actual users. 14.1% of search queries are now question keywords, according to SEO expert Brian Dean on BACKLINKO. That often means leaving out simple, connector words, like “the” or “and” and using one of the “WH question words”: Who, What, Where, When, Why, or not using question words at all, but still IMPLYING a question.
In current research, IF a question word is used, search questions most commonly begin with the following question words: 1) “How…?” or 2) “What…?” or 3) “Where…?”, in THAT ORDER of frequency.
HOW WHAT and WHERE: FUNCTION
|Asking about a way or manner that something is done
|Asking for information about something or someone
|Asking about a place, location or area (on- or off-screen)
HOW WHAT and WHERE: REAL-LIFE SEARCHES
|How do log in account OR
How log in
|What is password [product name] OR
What kind payment?
|Where is Selling tab [product name] OR
A question like “How do I recover my password?” might be phrased as a question that begins with “I forgot password” or simply, “forgot password” followed by a product name or company.
FAQ examples for all websites
A few examples of common FAQ questions for all sites include:
- “I forgot my password for [your website]. How do I recover it?”
- “How to log in to [your website]?”
- “What’s my username on [your website]?”
Opting for a simple but conversational phrasing will mean more people will use the exact keywords in your FAQ.
FAQ examples for informational websites
For informational sites that are aiming to increase traffic to content, an FAQ can cover a wider range of topics. While it’s still important to include information on logging in, account preferences, and security, other questions can be more topical; specifically, they should be expressly suited to your company.
What should be included in an informational FAQ?
For websites with a specific mission statement, questions about your company’s purpose and values can help drive traffic to your site. Examples of simple but conversational FAQ question to include might be:
- “What is [your company]?”
- “What does [your company] do?”
- “What does [your company] stand for?”
Using Google Trends to pinpoint which variations on these questions are the most likely to be used as FAQ search keywords can help you boost SEO ranking even more. (Google Trends is part of a business inspiration and ideas site called Think with Google — and worth checking out.)
FAQ examples for online stores
If your website is involved in selling products to customers, there are quite a few e-commerce FAQ questions to catch. Uncovering the most frequently asked questions by customers is where to start (what we call “FAQ Finding“). Then, make sure you have included the basic questions for information on payment methods, refunds, shipping, account settings, and any discounts, rewards, or memberships your company offers.
For each of these topics, a simple but conversational phrasing for the questions can boost the SEO for your website. Examples of simple phrasing that is likely to actually be searched for by customers might include:
- “Does [your company] offer refunds?”
- “What is the return policy for [your company]?”
- “How do I track my order from [your company]?”
- “Does [your company] take Paypal?”
- “How to use bonus points for [your company]?”
Since many users type questions into search engines in the form of a question, FAQs can make a big difference for your SEO.When it comes to choosing FAQ search terms, the key is to pick what users are most likely to actually type into Google. Stick to plain language* whenever possible and the simplest variations for your questions.
Plain language refers to language that is clear, straightforward, and uses only as many words as necessary.
FAQ examples for services with reservations
FAQs for websites that include services for reservations—such as travel products like hotels, car rentals, or airline tickets—have a few extra checklist items. Questions about payment methods, refunds, and account information will still apply to these businesses. In addition to those types of questions, it’s important to include information on cancellation policies, check-in/check-out times, and how to get into contact with an employee while using the service.
Examples might include:
- “What is the cancellation policy for [your service]?”
- “What’s the latest I can get a full refund for [your service]?”
- “What’s the check-in time for [your service]?”
- “Are there late fees for [your service]?”
- “Who do I call about [your service]?”
Making sure you phrase the question and how you talk about your service is crucial. For example, if you are allowing customers to book tickets for travel or an event, you would want to use commonplace language in talking about cancellations.
Finding out whether your users are most likely to refer to your service as a “reservation,” “ticket,” or “booking” can make a difference in how you phrase the questions for SEO purposes.
When it comes to your FAQ search terms, it’s important not only to nail the keywords but also to make sure you’re phrasing the questions the way users would ask them. Think through the simplest way a person would ask the question you’re answering. Then, take the time to analyze what users type into search engines through a service like Google Trends. Look at how other websites have phrased similar questions. An experienced, professional writer or editor can clear up any confusion you might have about your wording, grammar, or punctuation.
Summing it all up
All websites with user accounts should include information about logging in, password recovery, and account security. Informational or mission-based websites should include information on what your company is on a basic level, as well as what it advocates for, in simple terms. Websites that sell products online should include information about refunds, shipping, and payment methods. If your business involves making reservations, include questions on check-in/check-out times, cancellation policies, and contact information. Making sure you’re phrasing these basic questions in a conversational but simple way can do wonders for your website’s SEO ranking and create a more positive user experience.
For more information on the Plain Writing Act of 2010, go here. This forward-looking Act provides democratic access to information and services by establishing clear guidelines for the writing of public-facing U.S. Government documents.
Credit: Photo by taylorschlades