Voice Search SEO
Voice search SEO is optimizing keywords and phrases for when people vocally say what they are trying to search versus physically typing the search words. For example, when you tell your smart device, “What’s a good pizza dough recipe?” or “Navigate me to the closest pet store.” Voice search can be more convenient than taking the time to type your search the old-fashioned way. Maybe your hands are messy from cooking so you can’t type up your question. Maybe you just find voice search easier and faster than typing your search. No matter what your reason is for using voice search instead of typing out a search, voice search is definitely becoming more relevant today. If you are not doing so already, you need to get on the voice search SEO bandwagon. You must optimize your voice searches in order to compete with other businesses who already beat you to the punch.
In this article, you will learn how to optimize voice searches and what voice searches consist of.
Voice Search Optimization
Voice search is quickly increasing as technology advances. You probably have already done a voice search and not even known it. Whenever you talk to your Alexa, Google Home, phone, or other smart device, you are using a voice search. This is why voice search optimization is so important. With so many people using voice search, you will want to include voice search optimization into your business plan.
5 Steps for Your Voice Search Optimization Strategy
1. Optimize your Business
It is crucial to make sure your business website is accurate. Ensure that you keep your name, address, phone number, email, etc. consistent no matter what platform you are using. Whether it’s your website, social media, or other professional accounts. Approximately, 49% of small businesses don’t update their listings, which is detrimental to their businesses.
2. Accelerate your Website
This point is key to voice search. People use voice search because they want quick results. On average, it takes 15 seconds for a page to load on a mobile device. The best time should be under 3 seconds. If you are not ranking as well on mobile search versus other searches, check to see if you have any speed problems. People are more likely to choose a different website to browse if the site is taking too long to load.
3. Focus on Questions
41% of people who use voice-activated devices say it’s like talking to a friend. In other words, people are less likely to say, “pancake recipe,” and more likely to say, “What’s a good pancake recipe.” These smart devices respond to people and talk to them, so it only makes sense that people act as if these devices are people themselves. For your business, you will want to focus on conversational keywords and phrases in order to get the most website and search traffic.
4. Give Answers
There are a few things you can do to help optimize voice searches. Make sure you are constantly updating your content. You don’t want your website to be out of date or using information that is no longer relevant. You will want to have content on your website to answer questions. This can be a FAQ page, blog post, or whatever works best with your business. If you’re not sure what kind of questions to answer or what customers are looking for, a good place to start is your reviews section. Your review will reveal common questions and concerns people have about your business, product, or service.
Even though voice search is very common, make sure to test it! You never know if there will be glitches or issues once you optimize your voice searches. You can start by testing searches on different devices like smart speakers (Alexa, Google, etc.), mobile devices (Cortana, Siri, etc.), or any other smart device that utilizes voice search. After testing, you can use various services to check how well your website is ranking. For example, Google Search Console measures your website’s health and performance. Services like Google Search Console will assist you in not only testing your website but also maintaining your optimized website.
Voice search is exactly what it sounds like. You search for things using your voice. It’s that simple. People believe that smart speakers will be the next refrigerator. Eventually, everyone will have a smart speaker in their home. 6 out of 10 people say voice activated devices are an essential product. 41% of adults and 55% of teens use voice search every single day. Voice search has grown 35 times since 2008. This large growth makes sense because of the various technological advances made over the years. So, why is voice search used so often? Is there a reason for its rapid growth in popularity over the years?
Why is Voice Search Used?
Voice search has 3 main reasons behind its success. First, voicing your search is 3.7 times faster than typing it. The faster you search, means the faster you get answers. If people can get answers quickly, they will continually use the same search strategy since it means fast results. Second, voice search works extremely well for mobile devices. Approximately 60% of mobile users use voice search “at least some of the time.” For instance, if you want to search for something quickly while driving, you are not going to take out your phone and type. You will be hands-free by safely using voice search on your phone. It’s very simple.
For example, if you have an iPhone, all you have to say is, “Hey Siri,” followed by your question or request. Lastly, voice search is simply convenient to use. At times, people can be lazy and not want to take the time or make the effort to type their question into a search engine. Luckily, they can use voice search to easily ask their question without having to type it out. Voice search can be especially convenient on a tiny mobile device because it is easier to speak your request rather than type it.
You might be worried about your particular device misunderstanding you. Fortunately, voice recognition software is becoming more accurate. That doesn’t mean there will be no errors at all. But issues are constantly being fixed and prevented.
Google Voice Search
In the past 10 years, Google has been working towards improving their search technology. Specifically, they have been making extraordinary advances with voice search. Google Voice Search was first introduced in 2010. It allows people to speak their search, rather than type. You don’t even need to click anything extra on your computer, all you need to say is, “OK, Google”. You can also activate voice search by clicking the little microphone icon next to the search bar. A few years ago, Google made an enormous change that was a real game changer for the future of search. This update was called Hummingbird. Hummingbird put an emphasis on semantic search, which improves search accuracy by understanding the searcher’s intent. So what does semantic search have to do with voice search?
Semantic voice search focuses on user intent. In contrast to traditional type-out searches, voice searchers are more conversational. Voice searchers tend to search longer sentences because they are speaking rather than typing. In order to optimize your search hits, you need to include words and phrases that have conversational qualities. You will want to focus more on answering questions versus singular keywords. As stated earlier, you could do so by including a FAQ page. By focusing on answering questions, you will appear in more users’ searches because they will most likely be asking a specific question like “how can I optimize my business website?” versus “optimize website” or “business optimization.” Let’s look at a more in depth example of semantic search in relation to a Google Voice Search.
Say you look up “Chris Evans”, who is well-known for playing Captain America in the Marvel movies. Now that you have an initial search, here is where Google semantic search is put to the test. Now, you look up “What is the name of his character in Captain America: The First Avenger?” Google will tell you that Chris Evans portrays Steve Rogers in the movie. You can test your search even further by asking “How old is Chris Evans?” Before you even type in his name, Google will remember that you were looking up Chris Evans earlier, so it will recommend or autofill his name.
This example gives you a better understanding and a real-world application of semantic voice search. Basically, the software remembers what you are searching when you search up other questions. This idea circles back to the main idea of intent. The user is trying to find out more information on a certain topic. Google assists them by giving that person the information they are looking for.
Now that you have a better understanding of how to optimize your voice searches and what a voice search means, you can start strategizing how you will implement this into your business plan. Before, you might have only been aware of website or regular search optimization. Now, you know that voice search is a whole other category to be aware of while actively working on your business plan.
Reach out to SEO Design Chicago today for inquiries about how to optimize your website or anything else to do with building a successful company!