Create Your Own Q&A Site with Answerbase

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A great way to encourage user-generated content is to start your own Q&A site, or add a public Q&A section to your current site.

AnswerBase offers Q&A Sofware which they've been serving to enterprise clients for the last few years. But they have recently launched a version that is available to websites and businesses of any size.

The major benefit of having user generated content, especially Q&A type content, is the potential for a dramatic increase in organic search traffic...

The AnswerBase software is already highly optimized, giving you an advantage out of the box. Each question that your readers post creates a new page, which is optimized for the questions other people with similar issues are searching for online at the major search engines.

A couple of examples that use AnswerBase, that you may recognize, are:

Edmunds Answers http://answers.edmunds.com

DexKnows Answers http://answers.dexknows.com/weddings

Highly Customizable & Easy To Set Up

You can set up a Q&A site in a matter of minutes, using simple tools they provide for set-up and customization. You'll have a choice of three different layouts where you can adjust the color scheme, upload images, and even tweak the CSS if you like.

On the professional level plans (and higher) you'll have access to widgets you can embed on your current website or blog to help engage your current visitors, and drive traffic to the new Q&A section.

It also include a mobile site version, making it compatible for smart phones and other mobile devices.

The administration panel gives you (and/or your moderators) easy access to manage the Q&A community, moderate the content, and monitor activity through detailed reports.

Several Low Cost Plans Available

There are several low-cost plans ranging from $15 per month for the basic plan, to $200 per month for the most advanced. They also offer a 15-day free trial, with no credit card required, if you want to give it a test drive and see if it's a good fit for your website or blog.

To learn more about AnswerBase, visit the website and also read their recent Press Release here: Answerbase.com Brings Enterprise-Grade Community Q&A to Businesses of All Sizes.

There are a lot of ways you could put this to good use. From a moderated FAQ section, to an open discussion and community for your niche. User Generated Content is highly engaging, and also very valuable for organic search growth. Not only does it add more optimized pages to your domain, it also increases your site size and improves your overall site theming.

I would love to hear your thoughts, and ideas you have for creative uses of this software! A Social Q&A site is a great alternative to the traditional "discussion forum" option - with a lot more advantages.

The layout alone gives you more options than a traditional forum. It also has an RSS feed, giving you an additional marketing medium - from submitting to RSS directories, to building a list by offering email updates/digests through a "blog broadcast" type feature in your mailing list manager.

Users also enjoy leader boards and ranks, which is an incentive to participate - and makes your site more "sticky" (keeping them on your domain longer).

They can also create an "Expert Widget" and add it to their site or blog, improving their own credentials - and also providing a valuable link back to the Q&A section of your site.

Like I said, I'm anxious to hear your thoughts & creative ideas! 😉

Best,

This post was sponsored by AnswerBase. If you are interested in sponsoring a post on ClickNewz about your website or product, contact me for details.

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About Lynn Terry

Lynn Terry is a full-time Internet Marketer with over 17 years experience in online business. Subscribe to ClickNewz for the latest Internet Marketing trends & strategies, Lynn's unique case studies, creative marketing ideas, and candid reviews...more»

Discussion

  1. Graham Lutz says:

    This looks like the next step beyond blog comments in connecting with your readers. How cool would it be if they could ask you and your community anything right on your page.

    This could lead to huge amounts of data for creating membership sites or other info products.

  2. Peter Lawlor says:

    I fail to see how this is better than commenting on a blog other than you can create a dedicated Q&A portal on the site where people can ask and answer questions. I suppose that has huge potential IF people actually respond. Some of the sample sites AnswerBase profiles have many unanswered questions which renders it of limited user benefit.

    On the flip side, if as a webmaster you're prepared to answer questions promptly, you could create an excellent resource on your site. I took a brief look at Answerbase and I love the Q&A interface; however I would hope you could put it in a subdirectory so that it doesn't become your entire website.

    If a blogger creates a successful Q&A portal/site, no doubt the SEO benefit and resulting traffic could be awesome. It would just require a great deal of answering questions building up a loyal audience until most questions are answered by loyal readers.

    Of course, if you made it so answers provide a dofollow link to the answering person's website, you'd probably get answers generated very quickly. The issue is whether those answers are any good.

    I agree that AnswerBase is probably better than a forum for Q&A, but perhaps not as good for building a community. For example, I wouldn't like for the forums on which I participate regularly to migrate to AnswerBase. I like the forum software and format.

    Anyway, Q&A sites have potential, but like anything online, would require some attention and effort to make it work. Then there's monetizing it without detracting use-experience.

    This is the first I've looked at this website tool so I'm all over the place with ideas - good and bad. I look forward to hear what other people have to say about it. Often I overlook valuable uses of tools and then see what other people do and say to myself "wow" I sure missed the boat there.

  3. Catherine says:

    Hi Lynne,
    Q&A sites seems like an interesting addition to a website where questions are frequently raised with the visitors. I guess it is similar to commenting, but a lot more powerful.
    Interesting post,
    Regards
    Catherine

  4. I only know the platform of Q&A which i think Yahoo provides. I recently decided to publish a Q&A webpage with every niche site i create, but i haven't considered installing a public live Q&A site as i don't have the amount of traffic needed yet.

  5. What is really great about that software is that it offers any business the ability to build the biggest, baddest, dynamic FAQ ever.

    This is obviously a great addition to any product or service oriented business that is smart enough to take full advantage of an online presence.

    Great recommendation Lynn!

    Mark

  6. The script is great, and it's a good business idea, but it simply takes too much time and effort to make it work when there are already so many question/answer websites. However, if you don't mind those drawbacks you get some great benefits from such a website.

  7. My problem is Branding who want to make question to a stranger blogger

  8. I'm seriously looking at this for a site I'm just about to launch. by it's very nature - tutorials on using graphic design software, there are usually a number of questions asked. We've been using Facebook as a channel to test and drive initial traffic, but I could see that this could be a great inter-active tool. Facebook is good, but is limited because Q & A scroll down the wall and are lost. Definitely something to put into the mix.

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