The way people search the web is changing, and it’s important that your SEO strategy changes with it. One of the biggest shake-ups in search is the rise of voice assistants like Amazon Alexa, Google Home, and of course, Apple’s Siri, all of which make it easy for individuals to simply speak their search query without having to type it.
ComScore predicted in a study that by 2020, 50% of all queries will be made through voice search and that 30% of queries will no longer run on one screen. Soon, most searches will use voice.
The question marketers and business owners should be asking is, can our content be discovered using voice search capabilities? And if the answer is no, what can you do to make your website more voice search-friendly? Here we will discuss what should we do for your website for its optimizing for voice search.
What are Voice Searches?
A voice search is an alternative way to make inquiries on the Internet through web search engines. Instead of writing your question, you just have to use your voice, and you will have an answer to what you are looking for.
Currently, voice searches are used through virtual assistants such as:
- Google Voice Search
- Siri (Apple)
- Cortana (Microsoft)
- Alexa (Amazon)
Tips to Optimize Your Website for Voice Searches
Let’s have a look at how you optimize your website for voice searches.
Focus on the long-tail keywords
It is essential to include long-tail keywords on your website and allow people to use their colloquial language. Long-tail keywords are particular kinds of searches that use several keywords instead of just one or two. They have a lower volume but can allow for more niche wins and content.
Voice search queries often cover the “who” and “what” among other questions. The answers to these queries become gold when it comes to attracting more traffic to your website. It is worth mentioning that people are increasingly using terms like “better”, “closer” or “cheaper” to find more accurate results. There is a big difference between how people type and how they speak when asking questions in search engines.
Spoken questions have many more words than written ones, so there is an importance of including long-tail keywords in the content of your website. There is another example, such as when people type in search engines; you can see something like “restaurants in North Dakota.” However, when they talk, it looks like this: “What is the best restaurant to eat in North Dakota.”
Make sure your website is responsive
Since there are more and more types of smartphones and tablets to surf the Internet, it has become increasingly necessary to create a website that adapts to multiple platforms.
The so-called “responsive web design” implies that your website can be adapted according to the device on which it is displayed, ensuring that the content is viewed on a phone, tablet, or desktop computer.
Most voice searches are done through mobile devices, so your site must have this type of design. Also, it should not only adapt to other devices but also must be attractive and fast when loading.
Users, in general, like fast pages, so make sure the speed is two seconds or less. With the Pingdom tool, you can measure the loading time of your website in an easy and fast way.
Use Schema on your website for VSO
Another important tool to use in optimizing your website is schema. To understand what makes schema important, it’s helpful to be familiar with Google’s featured snippets.
Say, for example, you search how to bake a chocolate cake. On the search engine results page (SERP), Google will offer you an “information box” that includes a picture of chocolate cake as well as a step-by-step recipe; this information is culled from a high-ranking source.
This is an example of a featured snippet, and it provides the user with information without requiring him or her to click on any links or navigate away from the SERP itself.
These featured snippets are also crucial for voice search queries; for such queries, Siri, Alexa, or whatever another virtual assistant is being used will read this information out loud, including the cited source.
Obviously, then, if you’re looking to rank for voice search queries, it’s helpful if you can position your website content as one of these featured snippets. You can get these with a basic piece of code that you add to your website to help the search algorithms retrieve certain information more quickly.
The result of schema markup, combined with some of the natural-language Web copy we mentioned, can make your website far more competitive in voice search queries – and given the fast ascendancy of voice search tools, that’s a perfect place to be.
Update your Google My Business listing
One of the most important aspects for companies is to ensure that customers can locate them on the map. One of the best ways your potential customers can find your business is through Google My Business.
It is a free tool that allows you to create a profile of your business, which appears on the right side of the SERP and shows the following information:
- Business name
- Phone number
- Address, call, and website buttons
- Hours of operation
- Comments or reviews
This tool allows you to join several Google products, such as Google Maps, to support the local positioning of companies.
Bring your content to the Features Snippets
First, you need to know what are featured snippets? Featured snippets are actually the selected search results that are featured on the top of Google. Featured Snippet will win the battle for the most successful content search content.
Even now, the “zero position” is very popular among many SEOs; after all, you land on top of Google. And because many providers use Google search results, that is the essential task for all those who have content on the web.
Although there is no definitive answer on how to reach this first position, many investigations have been carried out to understand the best course of action. Also, we have already researched the subject, and now we can say that there are some things you should do with your content to get to the infamous “zero position”.
For example, you have to answer specific questions with your content. Let’s not forget that Google’s job is to provide the best answer, so you must do the appropriate preliminary work.
Checking, for example, portals like Quora, you will find the questions that annoy users. Develop your content around these questions in a detailed and sustainable way to be the result that best suits users’ concerns. Important: imagine the question yourself, send it with an H2 tag as a signal to Google, and then immediately answer directly in the text.
Try to make it short, the list-based responses work especially well and that the chances of landing in the Featured Fragment are higher.
Improve the optimization of your local search engine
39% of voice searches are based on the search for local business information. Therefore, it becomes more critical for local SEO to improve positioning in this regard. To do that, the first step is to make sure your ‘Google My Business’ page is up to date. Also, check your contact details are correct, the address is correct, the opening hours are correct, and so on.
It may seem obvious, but when someone does a voice search like “How long is the supermarket open?” He or she expects the correct answer.
Voice search is coming to the web more and more whether traditional SEOs are prepared or not. The best way to be in a great position for the shift from text-based search to voice is to have long, descriptive and natural language text that answers popular questions with proper technical markup.
Contacting an agency to help one solution, as experts can produce content and technical know-how to properly publish and index it with the world’s search engines.