Q&A

Q&A pages are web pages that contain data in a question and answer format, which is one question followed by its answers. For content that represents a question and its answers, you can mark up your data with the schema.org QAPage, Question, and Answer types.

Properly marked up pages are eligible to have a rich result displayed on the search results page. This rich treatment helps your site reach the right users on Search. Here's an example of a result you might see for the user query "How do I remove a cable that is stuck in a USB port?" if the page has been marked up to answer that question:

An example in search results
  of a question and answer card for the search query "How do I remove a cable that is stuck in
  a USB port?"

In addition to enabling your content for the rich result treatment shown above, marking up your Q&A page helps Google generate a better snippet for your page. In the example above, the content from the answers may appear in the basic result if the rich result is not shown.

How to add structured data

Structured data is a standardized format for providing information about a page and classifying the page content. If you’re new to structured data, you can learn more about how structured data works.

Here's an overview of how to build, test, and release structured data. For a step-by-step guide on how to add structured data to a web page, check out the structured data codelab.

  1. Add the required properties. For information about where to put structured data on the page, watch JSON-LD structured data: Where to insert on the page.
  2. Follow the guidelines.
  3. Validate your code using the Rich Results Test.
  4. Deploy a few pages that include your structured data and use the URL Inspection tool to test how Google sees the page. Be sure that your page is accessible to Google and not blocked by a robots.txt file, the noindex tag, or login requirements. If the page looks okay, you can ask Google to recrawl your URLs.
  5. To keep Google informed of future changes, we recommend that you submit a sitemap. You can automate this with the Search Console Sitemap API.

Examples

The following markup example includes the QAPage, Question, and Answer type definitions in JSON-LD:

JSON-LD

<html>
  <head>
    <title>How many ounces are there in a pound?</title>
    <script type="application/ld+json">
    {
      "@context": "https://schema.org",
      "@type": "QAPage",
      "mainEntity": {
        "@type": "Question",
        "name": "How many ounces are there in a pound?",
        "text": "I have taken up a new interest in baking and keep running across directions in ounces and pounds. I have to translate between them and was wondering how many ounces are in a pound?",
        "answerCount": 3,
        "upvoteCount": 26,
        "dateCreated": "2016-07-23T21:11Z",
        "author": {
          "@type": "Person",
          "name": "New Baking User"
        },
        "acceptedAnswer": {
          "@type": "Answer",
          "text": "1 pound (lb) is equal to 16 ounces (oz).",
          "dateCreated": "2016-11-02T21:11Z",
          "upvoteCount": 1337,
          "url": "https://example.com/question1#acceptedAnswer",
          "author": {
            "@type": "Person",
            "name": "SomeUser"
          }
        },
        "suggestedAnswer": [
          {
            "@type": "Answer",
            "text": "Are you looking for ounces or fluid ounces? If you are looking for fluid ounces there are 15.34 fluid ounces in a pound of water.",
            "dateCreated": "2016-11-02T21:11Z",
            "upvoteCount": 42,
            "url": "https://example.com/question1#suggestedAnswer1",
            "author": {
              "@type": "Person",
              "name": "AnotherUser"
            }
          }, {
            "@type": "Answer",
            "text": " I can't remember exactly, but I think 18 ounces in a lb. You might want to double check that.",
            "dateCreated": "2016-11-06T21:11Z",
            "upvoteCount": 0,
            "url": "https://example.com/question1#suggestedAnswer2",
            "author": {
              "@type": "Person",
              "name": "ConfusedUser"
            }
          }
        ]
      }
    }
    </script>
  </head>
  <body>
  </body>
</html>
Microdata

<html>
<body itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/QAPage">
<div itemprop="mainEntity" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Question">
   <h2 itemprop="name">How many ounces are there in a pound?</h2>
   <div itemprop="upvoteCount">52</div>
   <div itemprop="text">I have taken up a new interest in baking and keep running across directions in ounces and pounds. I have to translate between them and was wondering how many ounces are in a pound?</div>
   <div>asked <time itemprop="dateCreated" datetime="2010-11-04T20:07Z">Nov 11
'10 at 20:07</time></div>
<div itemprop="author" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Person"><span
itemprop="name">New Baking User</span></div>
<div>
    <div><span itemprop="answerCount">3</span> answers</div>
    <div><span itemprop="upvoteCount">26</span> votes</div>
    <div itemprop="acceptedAnswer" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Answer">
       <div itemprop="upvoteCount">1337</div>
       <div itemprop="text">
       1 pound (lb) is equal to 16 ounces (oz).
       </div>
      <a itemprop="url" href="https://example.com/question1#acceptedAnswer">Answer Link</a>
      <div>answered <time itemprop="dateCreated" datetime="2010-12-01T22:01Z">Dec 1 '10 at 22:01</time></div>
      <div itemprop="author" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Person"><span itemprop="name">SomeUser</span></div>
      </div>
    <div itemprop="suggestedAnswer" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Answer">
       <div itemprop="upvoteCount">42</div>
       <div itemprop="text">
       Are you looking for ounces or fluid ounces? If you are looking for fluid ounces there are 15.34 fluid ounces in a pound of water.
       </div>
       <a itemprop="url" href="https://example.com/question1#suggestedAnswer1">Answer Link</a>
       <div>answered <time itemprop="dateCreated"datetime="2010-12-06T21:11Z">Dec 6 '10 at 21:11</time></div>
       <div itemprop="author" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Person"><span
itemprop="name">AnotherUser</span></div>
     </div>
     <div itemprop="suggestedAnswer" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Answer">
       <div itemprop="upvoteCount">0</div>
       <div itemprop="text">
       I can't remember exactly, but I think 18 ounces in a lb. You might want to double check that.
       </div>
       <a itemprop="url" href="https://example.com/question1#suggestedAnswer2">Answer Link</a>
       <div>answered <time itemprop="dateCreated"datetime="2010-12-06T21:11Z">Dec 6 '10 at 21:11</time></div>
       <div itemprop="author" itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Person"><span
itemprop="name">ConfusedUser</span></div>
    </div>
</div>
</div>
</body>
</html>

Guidelines

For your Q&A page to be eligible for this rich treatment, you must follow these guidelines:

Content guidelines

  • Only use the QAPage markup if your page has information in a question and answer format, which is one question followed by its answers.
  • Users must be able to submit answers to the question. Don't use QAPage markup for content that has only one answer for a given question with no way for users to add alternative answers; instead, use FAQPage. Here are some examples:

    Valid use cases:

    • A forum page where users can submit answers to a single question
    • A product support page where users can submit answers to a single question

    Invalid use cases:

    • An FAQ page written by the site itself with no way for users to submit alternative answers
    • A product page where users can submit multiple questions and answers on a single page
    • A how-to guide that answers a question
    • A blog post that answers a question
    • An essay that answers a question
  • Don't apply QAPage markup to all pages on a site or forum if not all the content is eligible. For example, a forum may have lots of questions posted, which are individually eligible for the markup. However, if the forum also has pages that are not questions, those pages are not eligible.
  • Don't use QAPage markup for FAQ pages or pages where there are multiple questions per page. QAPage markup is for pages where the focus of the page is a single question and its answers.
  • Don’t use QAPage markup for advertising purposes.
  • Make sure each Question includes the entire text of the question and make sure each Answer includes the entire text of the answer.
  • Answer markup is for answers to the question, not for comments on the question or comments on other answers. Don't mark up non-answer comments as an Answer.
  • Question and answer content may not be displayed as a rich result if it contains any of the following types of content: obscene, profane, sexually explicit, graphically violent, promotion of dangerous or illegal activities, or hateful or harassing language.
  • STEM education-related Q&A pages, where the primary focus is to provide a correct answer to a user-submitted homework question, may be eligible for a Q&A carousel experience. These pages may only have a single answer that's provided or selected by in-house experts (instead of users).
    Example: An education page where a user submitted a single question, and a top answer is selected by experts.

Structured data type definitions

This section describes the structured data types related to QAPage.

You must include the required properties for your content to be eligible for display as a rich result. You can also include the recommended properties to add more information to your structured data, which could provide a better user experience.

You can use Google’s Rich Results Test to validate and preview your structured data.

QAPage

The QAPage type indicates that the page is focused on a specific question and its answer(s). We will only use Question structured data from pages with QAPage markup. There should only be one QAPage type definition per page.

The full definition of QAPage is available at https://schema.org/QAPage.

The following table describes the properties of the QAPage type that are used by Google Search.

Required properties

mainEntity

Question

The Question for this page must be nested under the mainEntity property of the QAPage item.

Question

The Question type defines the question that this page answers, and includes the answers, if any, to that question. Exactly one Question type is expected on the page, nested under the mainEntity property of the schema.org/QAPage. There should only be one Question type definition per page.

The full definition of Question is available at https://schema.org/Question.

Required properties

answerCount

Integer

The total number of answers to the question. For example, if there are 15 answers, but only the first 10 are marked up due to pagination, this value would be 15. This may also be 0 for questions with no answers.

Either acceptedAnswer or suggestedAnswer Answer

To be eligible for the rich result, a question must have at least one answer – either an acceptedAnswer or a suggestedAnswer. However, questions may not have answers when they are first posted. For questions without answers, set the answerCount property to 0. Questions without answers aren't eligible for the rich result.

acceptedAnswer

Answer

A top answer to the question. There can be zero or more of these per question. This should represent answers that are accepted in some way on your site. For example, accepted as a top answer by question asker, a moderator, or a voting system. Other forms of sorting answers, such as most-recent, should not be used to identify top answers.

suggestedAnswer

Answer

One possible answer, but not accepted as a top answer (acceptedAnswer). There can be zero or more of these per Question.

name

Text

The full text of the short form of the question. For example, "How many teaspoons in a cup?".

Recommended properties

author

Person or Organization

The author of the question.

dateCreated

Date or DateTime

The date at which the question was added to the page, in ISO-8601 format.

text

Text

The full text of the long form of the question. For example, "I’m cooking, and I need to know how many teaspoons are in a cup. How many teaspoons are in 1 cup?"

upvoteCount

Integer

The total number of votes that this question has received. If the page supports upvotes and downvotes, then set the upvoteCount value to a single aggregate value that represents both upvotes and downvotes. For example, if there are 5 upvotes and 2 downvotes, the aggregate value used for upvoteCount is 3. If there are 5 upvotes and downvotes are not supported, then the value for upvoteCount is 5.

Answer

The Answer type defines the suggested and accepted answers to the Question on this page. Define Answers inside the Question, as values for the suggestedAnswer and acceptedAnswer properties.

The following table describes the properties of the Answer type that is used within a Question.

The full definition of Answer is available at https://schema.org/Answer.

Required properties

text

Text

The full text of the answer. If only a portion is marked up, your content may not be shown and Google cannot determine the best text to display.

Recommended properties

author

Person or Organization

The author of the answer.

dateCreated

Date or DateTime

The date at which the answer was added to the page, in ISO-8601 format.

upvoteCount

Integer

The total number of votes that this answer has received. If the page supports upvotes and downvotes, then set the upvoteCount value to a single aggregate value that represents both upvotes and downvotes. For example, if there are 5 upvotes and 2 downvotes, the aggregate value used for upvoteCount is 3. If there are 5 upvotes and downvotes are not supported, then the value for upvoteCount is 5.

url

URL

A URL that links directly to this answer. For example: https://www.examplesite.com/question#answer1

Monitor rich results with Search Console

Search Console is a tool that helps you monitor how your pages perform in Google Search. You don't have to sign up for Search Console to be included in Google Search results, but it can help you understand and improve how Google sees your site. We recommend checking Search Console in the following cases:

  1. After deploying structured data for the first time
  2. After releasing new templates or updating your code
  3. Analyzing traffic periodically

After deploying structured data for the first time

After Google has indexed your pages, look for issues using the relevant Rich result status report. Ideally you should see an increase of valid pages, and no increase in errors or warnings. If you find issues in your structured data:

  1. Fix the errors.
  2. Inspect a live URL to check if the issue persists.
  3. Request validation using the status report.

After releasing new templates or updating your code

When you make significant changes to your website, monitor for increases in structured data errors and warnings.
  • If you see an increase in errors, perhaps you rolled out a new template that doesn't work, or your site interacts with the existing template in a new and bad way.
  • If you see a decrease in valid items (not matched by an increase in errors), perhaps you are no longer embedding structured data in your pages. Use the URL Inspection tool to learn what is causing the issue.

Analyzing traffic periodically

Analyze your Google Search traffic using the Performance Report. The data will show you how often your page appears as a rich result in Search, how often users click on it and what is the average position you appear on search results. You can also automatically pull these results with the Search Console API.

Troubleshooting

If you're having trouble implementing structured data, here are some resources that may help you.