Should Your Site Include a FAQ?
A few months ago, I was toying around with the idea of developing an SEO FAQ and incorporating it into my company site. Over the years, I’ve found that potential clients tend to ask the same set of questions about SEO and my approach to SEO during our preliminary meetings. I thought that an SEO FAQ would be a valuable resource for potential clients, because they could find answers to their questions before we ever actually talked. That way, our meetings could be more focused on how SEO can help their company and what I could bring to the table, and less about what keyword research is.
At first I thought it was a great idea. I would develop new pages of content for each step in the Brick Marketing approach to SEO for our full-service clients. It would break down the process my company takes step-by-step from on-site optimization to off-site link building. With all the information spelled out, potential clients would know exactly how I approach SEO. These new pages of content could potentially rank in the search engines, helping drive more traffic to my site.
But then I started thinking. If I had a page of content just devoted to how Brick Marketing handles keyword research, would I see an influx in leads from companies that just wanted someone to do keyword research for their site. I had the same concern about the pages for article marketing, blog commenting, XML sitemap creation and so forth. I didn’t want to spend my time chasing potential clients that just wanted to hire us to handle their directory submission. It takes just as much time and effort to win that client as it does to land a full-service SEO client. I learned a long time ago that the specialized SEO packages approach was not the way I wanted to grow my business.
I did a little research and found that a lot of sites (not just in the SEO industry) have FAQs, but the content has clearly been designed to rank in the search engines. As long as the content is well-written (and for the user!), I don’t think there is anything wrong with this. Having an FAQ about your business and industry can be an incredibly useful tool for both your site and your consumers. When you phrase your content into questions like “What does SEO stand for?” you are designing it to be pulled by the search engines specially to help the end user. This turns your site into a resource for your customers. They know they can visit your FAQ to address any issues.
However, I already had a SEO Term Dictionary on my site, and I didn’t think I should model my FAQ after the same setup. I wanted to develop an SEO FAQ that was specifically for my potential (and current) clients so that they could get a solid understanding of how I view and approach white hat SEO. Then I started thinking about how much information is too much. What’s to stop a competitor from finding that information and using it against me to win a client we are both vying for?
In the end I decided to not create the SEO FAQ. For now, I’ll stick with my SEO Dictionary and answer questions as they are asked.