How to Write B2B Content for Google’s Answer Box

Posted on Apr 24, 2019 by Kerry O'Malley

Getting your content to the top of Google search results remains the single most important task of any B2B marketer. Ranking anywhere on page one is a great accomplishment; but ideally you want to be in the top three results to improve your click-through rate. However, as more and more people use some form of voice search, a study by Gartner predicts that very soon, approximately 30% of all web browsing sessions will be done with a voice search and no screen. Read on to find out what that means for a B2B.

What is the Google Answer Box?

Google introduced the “rich featured snippet” – or Answer Box – to their search results in 2015. It is meant to provide fast and easy answers to common questions by allowing you to feature a scrap of information at the top of their results page. To see for yourself, type a common query into Google such as “what is b2b and b2c?” We got a small section from the small business section of that gave a short, easy answer to the question. This brief answer currently ranks even above organic and paid advertising results, which is an indication of where Google thinks search is headed. If it falls within your area of expertise, you should want your B2B to have that answer for Google. In the years since it debuted, the Google Answer Box has become a top target for all marketers, and offers the highest click through rate (CTR) of any piece of content. What’s more, those who search by voice will hear the result recited via Alexa, Siri, etc.

How to Create B2B Content for the Google Answer Box

The first step is to do your keyword research, specifically long tail. In the olden days, users were on the lazier side when it came to typing a question as long as something like “what is the best submersible sump pump for offshore use?” This is no longer an issue with voice search, as users will tend to speak longer in order to get a more detailed answer. Research what is being asked in your industry in order to see the best question and answers to target.

The next step is to search for the terms yourself. Is there already a Google Answer Box for that query? If not, you have a better chance for filling the gap. Even if there is an answer there, you may be able to provide a more professional, well-sourced one or one that is more up to date. For example, the submersible sump pump example may be from 2015. If you have a more current one, use it.

How to Get Content Into the Google Answer Box

You don’t have to be the first result on the page to get in the answer box, but it does help. Google may pull answers from any result on their first page. You should also format your answer and use the language Google likes to help your odds of landing in the box. Use the terms and phrases used in the question. Again using our example “The Best Submersible Sump Pumps for Offshore Use” would be a good title choice for a Google Answer Box that answers our previous query.

You can also feature the answer to the query in various forms. It can be a list of submersible sump pumps, a caption in the image of one, a section label or header, or even a table. As long as your content is structured in one section or throughout the entire document as a whole, you may find yourself in the box.

Remember that the Google Answer Box is still a relatively new concept, especially in the world of B2B marketing. There is something to be said for being grandfathered in with the first, best answer. You will be recognized for providing an expert answer, as well as receiving clicks and traffic from research-oriented searches. If you’d like to know more about how to create content for Google’s Answer Box, give us a call! We’re experts at developing industrial, B2B content that Google likes!

Author: Kerry O'Malley

Marketects was founded in 1999 by Kerry O’Malley, a proven marketing communications professional in international, manufacturing companies. Working on the “other side of the desk,” she hired ad agencies to manage her employers’ advertising and P/R programs. Frustrated over the lack of attention and level of enthusiasm she was looking for in the marketing agencies she worked with, Kerry realized that there was a definite need for a full-service marketing firm that specialized in working with industrial companies. She resolved that her clients would always receive the highest level of service possible and never feel like the last kid chosen for the team.

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