How to Do Keyword Research using PAAs (People Also Ask) for SEO

People often ask, how do I find the questions that my customers are asking for keyword research? (Ironic, isn’t it?) Well, one of the best tools is Google itself, namely it’s PAA (People Also Ask) feature. Let’s investigate.



First, you gotta gotta gotta know your keywords for effective SEO (Search Engine Optimization). What keywords to your customer enter into Google? And, increasingly, what questions do they enter into Google? As part of initial keyword research, I always look at questions people ask; if possible, I try to rank for “featured snippets,” and one of the ways to do this is to optimize around common questions.

PAAS on Google: People Also Ask

Second, to get started, go to the blank Google screen at Type in a keyword plus some type of question helper phrase as in “How to Contest a Will?” (if you were a will contest or probate attorney). Or you might type in “What is probate?” (if you were¬† a probate attorney). Basically take your core keyword and add in some helpers. Then play around with those searches to generate more questions for your question list. You can also pay attention to the related searches and search suggestions. Plus a “pro tip” – open and close the bottom question on the PAA list to get more questions.


Third, if that doesn’t given you enough questions for thought. Check out Answer the Public at This free tool is amazing – enter in a keyword and then let it populate a list of questions. Then take some of these questions back to Google and input them into the PAA’s. In this fashion, you can quickly build a list of “starter” questions and begin to research how relevant they are for your business, and how easy it might be to rank for the featured snippet.

Happy keyword research!


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About Jason McDonald

Jason McDonald is a top-rated San Francisco SEO Consultant. His consulting services include search engine optimization consulting, social media marketing consulting, and Google AdWords consulting. Jason's motto as a consultant is that he doesn't do SEO 'for you' but rather he does SEO 'with you.' That goes as well for his social media marketing consultant activities and Google AdWords consultant services. Besides serving clients in the San Francisco Bay Area, Jason consults with clients in Silicon Valley (San Jose), Oakland and other cities throughout the Bay Area. Beyond the Bay Area, Jason is available as an SEO consultant, Social Media Consultant, and as an expert witness in litigation involving social media marketing, search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising.