Voice Search Optimization

Voice Search Optimization

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Over the years, voice search has grown in popularity. With more people speaking to their smartphones, whether asking Siri for answers or bringing in an Amazon Echo or Google Home as an added member of the family, it’s imperative for your business to research and find ways to optimise themselves for voice search.
When Siri was first released in 2011, it seemed like a novelty. Who would want to be seen talking at their phone, asking them questions or ordering it to phone someone? It seemed indulgent, it seemed lazy, and most of the time it didn’t work well. Over the years though, common issues of mishearing you are somewhat fixed, with voice search becoming more reliable and useful. Rather than be a voice in the background, Siri and Amazon’s Alexa seem like an extra limb or a member of the family. It is no surprise that Google has found that 55% of teens and 41% of adults use voice search more than once a day. It’s forecasted that in 2020, at least 50% of all searches are going to be through images or speech.

What are People Searching for?

Before you make large changes to your digital marketing campaign, you need to understand what people are searching for. It’s been observed that people use voice search for a variety of reasons, and they can be broken down into 4 categories:

• 22% of people voice search for local information.
• 30% of people voice search general information.
• 21% of people voice search for fun and entertainment.
• 27% of people voice search as a personal assistant.

If you’re a local business, for example, then having keywords that incorporate your location will prove fruitful. You can do so by claiming your Google My Business listing. By understanding what people are searching for, you can see how best to integrate your business into the four popular segments listed above.

Adapt Your Keywords

It has been recently realised that natural, long-tail keywords are proving more popular nowadays. The reason behind this is because people are becoming more descriptive in their online searches. Rather than inputting broken sentences, we are using fuller sentences and even punctuations. For instance, when people are looking for a Thai restaurant in their immediate area, they are now searching for “best Thai restaurants in Cheltenham,” rather than “Thai restaurant Cheltenham.” This more conversational approach to keywords mirrors how we use voice search.
When speaking to a real person, you don’t use broken language, and so you wouldn’t say “Alexa, Thai restaurant Cheltenham,” because by doing so, you run the risk of Alexa misunderstanding your question. Instead, you’d say “Alexa, what’s the best Thai restaurant in Cheltenham?” Alexa will then search the web, using this phrase, to give you the best result possible.

Implement FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) Pages

It’s been determined that a great way for your business to provide useful data to your customers is to use conversational and long-tail keywords. Placing them naturally into your website’s content can prove troublesome, though. To keep it clean and relevant, try to group together common questions people are likely to ask in a FAQ page.

Voice search, regardless of its novelty beginnings, is only increasing in popularity. To ensure your business can fully utilise this new world of SEO, you need to start planning a digital marketing campaign, tailored to such changes.

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