How to add FAQs Schema using Google Tag Manager

Updated: 7 days ago

We’ve passed a milestone in Google’s evolution from search engine to walled-garden…

Said Rand Fishkin in his recent research. You might have already seen that Google organic click-thru rate is shrinking at alarming rates in the last three years.  




Whether your CTR improved or stayed the same over time, I am sure you have been alarmed by those stats.


On the other hand, Google in May announced the new rich results in the form of FAQs within SERPs. 


This is in line with what Fishkin found out, which is an effort to keep users on search results by serving answers directly on Google properties. Also, there are various opinions in the SEO community about the whole issue. 


I have already reported on Search Engine Land how much I like the new structured data features, while others are concerned about the loss of clicks.


What is this guide about


This is a step-by-step how-to guide on adding FAQ snippets in your product page. It's very simple and it requires not more than 15 mins to setup.


Note: even if you successfully implement the guide, Google doesn't give you any guarantee that your FAQs will be published. Let's see the official statement:


Using structured data enables a feature to be present, it does not guarantee that it will be present. The Google algorithm tailors search results to create what it thinks is the best search experience for a user, depending on many variables, including search history, location, and device type. In some cases, it may determine that one feature is more appropriate than another, or even that a plain blue link is best.

https://developers.google.com/search/docs/guides/sd-policies



Example of FAQs Snippets




Step 1: make sure your on-page content meets the quality guidelines


The first step is the easiest; your on-page content structure needs to meet Google's guidelines for FAQ rich snippet results to be shown within SERPs for your website.


Google has a clearly defined list when it comes to FAQ structured data; below is a list of do's and don't's.


What is allowed:

  1. Users can't submit FAQs on the site, the site has to write them

  2. A product page that lists FAQs, with no way users allowed alternative answers

  3. All FAQs should be visible on the FAQ page.


What is not allowed:

  1. A forum page where users can submit answers

  2. Users can't submit answers to a single question

  3. A page where users can submit multiple questions

  4. Don't use FAQs page for advertising

  5. FAQs might no be displayed if they containe one of the following: violent, profane, promotional, sexually explicit, dangerous or illegal activities and content.



Step 2: create the code


The code is very easy to create, it's exactly the same as it appears on your FAQ page. The preferred format for Google is J-SON.


I'll show you here an example of how a FAQ page looks like vs how the code looks like.


Example of a FAQ page



Now let's see the example of the J-SON for this page:

<script type="application/ld+json">

{

"@context": "https://schema.org",

"@type": "FAQPage",

"mainEntity": [{

"@type": "Question",

"name": "INSERT QUESTION TEXT HERE",

"acceptedAnswer": {

"@type": "Answer",

"text": "INSERT ANSWER TEXT HERE"

}

}, 

{ "@type": "Question",

"name": "INSERT QUESTION TEXT HERE",

"acceptedAnswer": {

"@type": "Answer",

"text": "INSERT ANSWER TEXT HERE"

}

}, 

{ "@type": "Question",

"name": "INSERT QUESTION TEXT HERE",

"acceptedAnswer": {

"@type": "Answer",

"text": "INSERT ANSWER TEXT HERE"

}

}, 

{ "@type": "Question",

"name": "INSERT QUESTION TEXT HERE",

"acceptedAnswer": {

"@type": "Answer",

"text": "INSERT ANSWER TEXT HERE"

}

}, 

{ "@type": "Question",

"name": "INSERT QUESTION TEXT HERE",

"acceptedAnswer": {

"@type": "Answer",

"text":"INSERT ANSWER TEXT HERE"}

}]

}

</script>


You simply change the text inside my CAPITAL LETTERS and add as many questions and answers you need to.


Alternatively, you can use Matthew Woodward's FAQ Page Rich Snippet Generator which creates the code for you.


Step 3: Using Google Tag Manager


Here are the steps to set up FAQs in Google Tag Manager


  1. In GTM go to Variables and make sure "Page Path" is selected


2- "Add a new tag". Name the tag "Your Product FAQ Snippet" and then select the custom HTML tag.


3- Insert the J-SON code above, including my capital letters and then replace them with your own questions and answers.



4- Add the trigger.


We want this tag to fire only on your product page, this is when we are using the "Page Path" Variable that we have checked before.

Call the trigger "Your product page FAQ Snippet SEO" so you know the trigger only indicates one page and it's easily recognisable.


5- Select Trigger Type "Page View" and then under "Trigger fires on" select "Some Pageviews"



6- We need to test it now to make sure the code we added is validated in GTM.

Click "Preview" and then go to your FAQ page, refresh it and check the GTM bar below to see if the code we added is firing.



Under Tags you should see a summary of all tag fired on this page.


This means GTM has correctly implemented your code.


7- Last step: Rich Result testing


But wait! How about Google SERPs? We need to take one last step to make sure our J-SON complies with the Google guidelines.


Luckily we have the Google Rich Results testing tool:


https://search.google.com/test/rich-results


Simply insert your URL into the search bar and click "Test URL".




If you have done everything without any mistake, you should get the green light from Google!



Let me know if you encountered any error and if you need my help just send me message.

© 2020 by Luca Tagliaferro. All rights reserved.