Google specifies how performance data for pages in the ‘people also ask’ area — such as clicks, impressions, and positions – is measured in Search Console.
During a recent Google Search Central SEO office-hours hangout, this topic was addressed.
Aakash Singh joins the Livestream to inquire about Google Search Console’s tracking of data for URLs that appear in ‘people also ask’ snippets.
When a URL is displayed under ‘people also ask,’ Google Search Advocate John Mueller responds by outlining how Search Console tracks a page’s performance statistics.
Mueller begins his statement by clarifying that all URLs displayed in Google Search, including ‘people also ask’ snippets, are counted in terms of impressions.
When a searcher clicks on a “people also ask” suggestion and a link to a webpage shows below, that page receives an impression.
Here’s how the performance data in your Search Console reports is tracked if you’ve gained a ranking in one of these search snippets.
“The short answer is whenever there is a URL shown in the search results we do try to show that in Search Console.
So with the ‘people also ask’ sections, I think it is that if you expand it then it shows a link to your site with that question and the snippet there. That means whenever someone expands that ‘people also ask’ section and sees the URL for your site, then that is counted as an impression.
And it doesn’t matter if you’re kind of the first one in the ‘people also ask,’ or if people clicked like 15 different ones and suddenly yours shows up. That would be counted as an impression.”
Mueller continues, “When a link to a page is clicked on, clicks are counted.”
When it comes to determining where the ‘people also ask’ section appears in a set of search results, Search Console keeps track of it.
If it’s in the second place, for example, any URLs in the ‘people also ask’ box are considered to be in the second position.
“Also, when a click happens, that gets counted as a click. I think the ranking, the position, is based on the overall position of that group of elements. At least, as far as I know, it doesn’t count like within the ‘people also ask’ section what position you are.”
In the same SERP, URLs can appear twice
Singh then asks Mueller if webpages may show in both the standard set of organic search results and the ‘people also ask’ section.
It is feasible, according to Mueller, to rank in both spots on the same SERP.
When this occurs, Search Console keeps track of the top ranking position.
“Sure. The only thing to watch out for — is the Search Console performance report shows the ranking of the topmost items. So if different URLs are listed multiple times in a search results page, it tracks the position of the first one.”
Source – Search engine journal