Voice search technology is rapidly changing the world. Devices such as Alexa, Google Voice, and Siri are no longer novelties. People are taking it for granted that they can communicate with increasingly sophisticated devices using their voice. This trend has major implications for every business. As your customers use voice search to find what they’re looking for online you need to be prepared.
The Voice Search Explosion
The Narvar Consumer Report has recently released some astounding statistics.
- 65% of 25-49 year-olds use voice-enabled devices daily.
- 65% of Amazon Echo and Google Home users can’t even imagine life without their smart speakers.
- 51% of online shoppers who use voice search also use it to research products.
- Search Engine Journal reports that 72% of people used voice search with a digital assistant in 2019.
These are just a few key numbers that indicate we’re in the middle of a significant shift in how people search and shop! People are quickly getting used to the speed and convenience of voice search. Businesses need to prepare for this in a number of ways.
How People Use Voice Search
Whether you use voice search yourself, it’s necessary to understand the customer’s mindset and goals as he or she uses devices such as Echo, Google Assistant, and Siri.
- Research. People ask questions, research products, compare prices and access product reviews using voice search.
- Search for a specific product. When customers know what they’re looking for, they may seek a local business that has it.
- Find a local business or landmark. People often use voice search not only in their own neighborhoods but when traveling to find the nearest restaurant, gym, salon, shopping center or another type of business.
- Everything! Countless household tasks such as managing lights, appliances, security systems, and heating/cooling systems.
Voice Search and SEO
Voice search is transforming the world of SEO as people get accustomed to searching verbally rather than typing in their queries. This has several important implications for optimizing your pages.
- Claim your Google My Business Listing. As many people using voice search are seeking local business solutions, it’s important to have an accurate and up-to-date Google listing. In addition to keeping your business visible, it also provides directions via Google Maps.
- Optimize your site for mobile. Voice search usually means a mobile voice search. The voice search and mobile revolutions are closely related. Mobile devices make it easy to conduct voice searches from any location. To make your website voice-friendly it also has to be mobile-friendly.
- Focus on super long-tail keywords. People tend to speak in natural sentences rather than using the traditional keywords that previously typed in. This means you should optimize long-tail keywords that reflect this conversational tone.
- Optimize for questions and featured snippets. People using voice search often ask questions such as, “Where is the nearest deli that’s open now?” or “Who sells auto parts near me?” Answer questions that begin with Who, What, Where, Why and How. It’s beneficial to have a list of FAQs as well. The FAQ are often chosen by Google as featured snippets, which appear in a box at the top of search results. One study revealed that 41% of voice search answers are taken from featured snippets.
- Location is key. As in the previous question, people often ask about businesses “near me.” It’s, therefore, crucial to optimize for local search. Be sure to include terms identifying your city, region, neighborhood and any key landmarks nearby.
- Site-loading speed. Page-loading speed is important for traditional as well as voice search SEO. However, one reason people love voice search is that it speeds everything up. It follows that such users aren’t going to want to wait for pages to load. Do everything possible to keep your site running fast.
Voice Search Will Continue to Grow
Voice search is not a passing trend but a permanent transformation of how people interact with their devices and the entire world. Most people simply find it more convenient and intuitive to speak than to write. As big as voice search is already, this is only the tip of the iceberg. More and more people are buying voice-activated devices and using them at home as well as in their vehicles. Voice search will soon become more popular than traditional search. Make sure your business is prepared for this new voice-centered world. Contact us today!