Voice Search Optimization, the Upcoming Trend in SEO Marketing
What is voice search optimization?
Voice Search Optimization refers to optimize your webpages design and content so that they can appear on top of the search engines whenever relevant voice search queries come in.
When you optimize your web pages for voice search, you are essentially optimizing them so that they can be found by internet users who will be conducting verbal searches.
Through this optimization process, it makes it possible for your pages to be read out aloud with the help of a voice search device.
The popularity of voice search optimization has been on a sharp rise in the past few years, and there are quite a number of reasons that can be attributed to this rise.
The major one, however, is the desire to find information and complete a variety of tasks more efficiently and hands-free.
The other reasons for the increase in the rise of voice search are:
- the ability to multitask easily
- the potential of users getting answers and information instantly
- the possibility to finish tasks efficiently and more quickly
- makes daily routines of searching for information online easier.
The major differences between search engine optimization and voice search optimization
Both search engine optimization and voice search optimization will yield you different results even if they search for the same thing, but there are major differences that exist between the two.
Similar to a text-based search, voice search also relies on an algorithm by a search engine to deliver the query results.
The difference lies in how the algorithm goes out to find and fetch those answers.
Here is a brief look at some of the major differences between the two-:
Voice search uses query differently
People talk differently from how they type. With most of the voice assistants, people usually tend to talk just the same way they would talk to other human beings, usually involving long phrases. Text search, on the other hand, tends to involve very short phrases.
Also, whenever one uses a voice search, they are most interested in short answers or single answer responses. The reason for this is because voice assistants continue to get optimized to give back the best possible answers without subjecting the user to a list for them to choose from as is always the case with text search.
The location of the searches
Statistics show that voice searches are very location-dependent.
The voice assistants are being modified to users’ preferences so that they can give single answers as well as to easily and efficiently respond to casually-phrased questions.
For example, a question such as “what is the best hotel around here” is likely to give a location-based search of nearby hotels.
In the same manner, a question like “call a doctor near me” is also likely to call a doctor in close proximity to the user. This is unlike search engine optimization where queries and responses can be made from anywhere and there is no strong correlation with the user’s location.
What people search for
Most people tend to use voice search for finding quick answers at the moment.
They will mostly be interested in local businesses or locations that they need to find right at the moment.
Also, the topics they are willing to search for are not sensitive in any way – they will not be using voice search for topics that can make them or those around them uncomfortable.
Text search or search engines works a bit differently. It is not necessarily used for quick searches when answers are needed at the moment and it can also be used to search sensitive topics that one would ordinarily feel free to shout over a voice search device.
Strategies to optimize your website for voice search
When it comes to optimizing your website for voice search, there are various approaches that you can follow.
Consider featured snippets
When answering voice search queries, Google Assistant, and Google Home are nowadays reading featured snippets. This implies that now is the time for you to start aiming for the coveted position on the search engine.
Using the SEMrush Keywords Overview tool, you can easily identify which keywords can show featured snippet.
Though there is no clear path on how to get a featured snippet position, there are certain ways you can structure your content to increase the likelihood of it being featured.
They include giving answers to specific questions, answering the questions concisely, and writing interesting and engaging copy. Many marketing companies will recommend to use tools such as www.answerthepublic.com to find the questions people are generally looking for related to a certain topic.
Write the content in a conversational tone
Voice search queries are usually very conversational and this is something you must take advantage of if you want your results to start showing for voice searches.
If you write in a language that sounds robotic, the chances of your content appearing on voice search results will be very minimal.
Consequently, it is vital that you use natural language in your content so that you can incorporate normal verbs, and phrases that ordinary users are likely to speak when using voice search.
Use long-tail keyword phrases
It is true that voice searches are longer than the kind of searches usually made on the keyboard. This is mainly because they are conversational in style.
Also, it is a fact that Google loves long-form content.
It is not possible or even convenient to prepare similar content in different forms to cater to both the needs of voice searchers and text searchers.
A win-win situation would be to stick to long-form content for your website because it will serve the needs of both. The long-form content will naturally include the long-tail phrases that are likely to originate from the voice searches.
Give more attention to local search engine optimization
Data show that nearly 39% of the voice search users are usually searching for information relevant to local businesses. This implies that now would be the right time for you to start focusing on local SEO if at all it is something that you have been ignoring.
A good starting point would be to ensure that your Google My Business Page is duly updated with the current information.
Also, ensure proper use of local long-tail keywords to increase your chances of occupying a featured snipped position when the voice searches come in.
Optimize your website for mobile
Google search is very keen on the mobile experience, and they have promised to keep improving on it day by day.
Regarding voice search, mobile easily beats other devices since most of the verbal questions are being asked over mobile.
Therefore, you should be prepared to start delivering mobile-ready content at all times. There is various way to create a mobile friendly website.
The starting point is ensuring that your web design is responsive. Ensure to conduct a mobile-friendly test on the site to ensure that it is optimized accordingly. It should also be easily crawlable to make your content easily visible on the search engines.
Still, on optimizing your website for mobile, this is also the time to improve on the load time of the site.
Whenever a user is conducting a voice search, most of the time, they need an instant answer. If your website is taking forever to load, they will quickly abandon it in favor of those that load faster.
It is vital to remember that website load speed impacts the bounce back rate, which in turn, impacts the ranking of the website on the search engines.
Therefore, ensure that your website has the best possible load speeds available. To test your website speed, we recommend using the free GTMetrix tool.
About a decade ago, voice search was predicted to be one of the hottest trends in the online marketing field.
Well, that future has already arrived and if you are not taking the necessary actions to align your website to take maximum advantage of it, then you should get prepared to lose a lot of business.
Remember when local SEO became a trend, the local businesses that ignored it get edged out of business by those who were quick to adopt it. This is your turn to jump on board and take massive advantage of local voice search.
Hopefully, the information provided herein is sufficient to point you in the right direction, if you would like more information about the subject please contact our digital marketing team to discuss your web strategy.