How Google Search Console Tracks “People Also Ask” Performance Data


Google is clarifying how page performance data in the “People Also Ask” section is measured in Search Console, such as clicks, impressions, and positions.

This topic came up on a recent Google Search Central SEO Hangout during business hours.

An individual named Aakash Singh joins the livestream to ask how Google Search Console tracks data from pages appearing in “people also ask” snippets.

Google search attorney John Mueller answers the question by explaining how Search Console tracks page performance data when a URL is shown in “people also ask.”

If you ranked in one of these search snippets, here’s how performance data is tracked in your Search Console reports.

Measure “People Also Ask” Performance Data in Search Console

Mueller begins his answer by stating that impressions are counted for all URLs displayed in Google Search, including “people also ask” snippets.

When a user clicks on a “people also ask” suggestion and a link to a webpage appears below, an impression is counted for that page.

โ€œThe short answer is that whenever a URL appears in search results, we try to display it in Search Console.

So with the “people also ask” sections, I think if you expand it, it shows a link to your site with that question and the snippet there. This means that every time someone expands on that “people also ask” section and sees your site’s URL, that’s counted as an impression.

And it doesn’t matter if you’re somehow first in the “people also ask” list, or if people clicked like 15 different clicks and suddenly yours shows up. This would be counted as one impression.

Mueller goes on to say that clicks are counted when a link to a page is clicked.

When it comes to measuring ranking position, Search Console tracks where the โ€œpeople also askโ€ section appears in a particular set of search results.

If it’s ranked second, for example, all URLs shown in the “people also ask” box are counted as ranked second.

Muller continues:

“Also, when a click occurs, it’s counted as a click. I think the ranking, the position, is based on the overall position of that group of items. At least, as far as I can tell, that does not count as in the “people also ask” section what position you hold.

URLs can appear twice in the same SERP

Singh goes on to ask Mueller if web pages can both appear in the regular set of organic search results. and ‘people also ask.’

Mueller says ranking in both places in the same SERP is possible.

When this happens, Search Console has the highest ranking position.

“Sure. The only thing to pay attention to: the Search Console performance report shows the ranking of the most important items. So if different URLs are listed multiple times in a search results page, it follows the position of the first.

Listen to the full discussion in the video below:


Featured image: Screenshot from YouTube.com/GoogleSearchCentral, March 2022.

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