- Voice Search is 2021’s new digital marketing trend.
- This trend has put innovations like Google Assistant, Cortana, Amazon Alexa and Apples Siri on the forefront of user consumption.
- Google has integrated voice search functionality into dozens of their applications and products.
Truth is, web content creators should give ample attention to optimizing video or text-based content for voice search. In the course of this article, we would be highlighting what voice search is, how voice search works, and 10 ways you can optimize your content for voice search in 2021. Without much mouthing, let us delve in.
What is Voice Search?
Google’s voice search is a functionality that can be used to perform both mobile and desktop searches. Normally, the user has to say a “wake” phrase that tells Google to commence searching for what the user inquires about. The wake phrase in this case is “Ok Google”. Voice Search can either be performed with a hands-free voice command or by clicking on the microphone icon that is situated on the right of the main Google search field.
You must thinking, “Voice Search? None of my website visitors use that!”. But if you take a look at some industry statistics, you would come to terms that voice search is rapidly growing and that you should start optimizing your content so as to stay alive in SEO completion.
Back in 2010, Google search usually required users to call a number from their device, after which they would be prompted via a recorded message to “say your search words”. The user would then say the keywords for their search queries, which would update a webpage with the results of their search.
Overtime, there were radical developments that came into play in speech recognition technology. In subsequent years, Google launched the Google Voice Search functionality. With this launch, Google began to integrate their speech recognition technology with Google Maps and Google Assistant. As of this year, Google has integrated voice search functionality into dozens of their applications and products.
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How Voice Search Works ?
In Google SERPs, some websites rank on position Zero for some search results. Position Zero in search engine ranking is referred to as a featured snippet. Voice search works by reading out to featured snippet in response to voice command made to Google Search. However, in other to optimize your content for voice search, you need to optimize your content to win featured snippet positions.
This implies that if you send a voice command to Google Voice Assistant, Siri, Amazon Echo or Cortana, you would receive an answer that is pulled from data gotten from the featured snippet. Voice search is less common for desktop users, and more common for mobile users.
Iterating that Voice search involves Google pulling data from position Zero ( Featured Snippet), businesses need to prioritize ranking high.
When you optimize your website for voice search, your website would gain immediate benefit of desktop and mobile based searches. Some of such benefits include;
- Enhanced click through rate for your content
- Increment in traffic
- More visibility for your Brand
10 Ways To Optimize your Website Content For Voice Search
#1. Optimize Your Website for Mobile Usability
Since majority of voice searches are made through mobile devices, optimizing your content for mobile usability should be a must-do. Here are a couple of things that you can do to optimize your website for mobile usability
- Keep the font size of your content readable
- Add search bar to your website for easy navigation
- Make sure that your website content is concise, clear and relevant
- Work on the loading speed of your website
#2. Optimizing your Website Content to Satisfy User Intent
As a website content writer, you should put into consideration the intent of the user. Ensure that important information about your organization is made available on your website. You content should be structured in a way that allows search engines to crawl and parse your blog content. If you know your content niche inside out, that does not mean that your customers do. Therefore, write in an in depth way so that you content can answer questions asked by your prospective customers.
#3. Ensure that Your Marketing Strategy Integrates Voice Search
There is a huge gap between searching the net with your voice and typing a query in a web browser. The onset of voice search has dramatically changed the way people use search engines. Keyword research strategies would definitely change because SEO experts would be dealing with very long tail search phrases. Voice search Keywords would become longer and more conversational.
More so, Google is changing how their search engine answers questions, this is because users no longer visit web pages, rather they receive their answers on the search page. This is the reason position zero has been added to SERPs. In times past, search results were listed in Google from number 1 to 10, but of recent, position Zero, which is the Featured Snippet has now been added.
#4. Use Natural Language Keywords in SEO optimization
Voice searches usually come in the form of natural conversational phrases. This involves the integration and preference of long-tail search phrases over short tail search keywords. For instance, when a user wants to search for a digital marketing agency, the user might type a short phrase like “India Digital marketing agency” or “ California Marketing Agency”. However, in the case of a voice search, the user would definitely sound more conversational like; “what is the best digital agency?”
#5 Create a Question Based FAQ page
Most voice search answers are around 34 words long, while a featured snippet averages around 45 words in length. It is for this reason that webmasters should add more juice to their content by adding FAQ pages that answer as many questions as possible. Writing a 45 word article does not make any sense, that is why the best approach for voice search content optimization is to create an FAQ per blog post. You can also insert high volume keywords into your FAQ pages so that you can increase your chances of ranking on search engine.
#6. Optimize your Web Content For Question Based Keywords
Sites like Investopedia and Wikipedia rank for question based keywords for a reason. Try to optimize your content in a way that it would rank for a “what is”, “why ” or “How” based query. As a content creator, you need to research how you audience makes question based queries. Also remember to include keywords as voice searches follow a conversational tone.
#7. Start off a Local Search Strategy
Voice search is a functionality that mostly affects local businesses. For you to rank high in search results, you need to keep your local business listings always active and updated. Be super specific when you are opening accounts with local business directories- this would increase your chances of ranking and showing up in voice searches related to your local niche. Try not to have different accounts that provide different information about your company, as search engines would not know which is correct and might not pull your company in voice search results.
#8. Optimize your content For Specific Search Engines.
Asides from Google, there are other search engines like Bing, Yandex, Baidu and DuckDuckGo. You need to diversify and target other search engines so that you can maximize profit at all fonts.
#9 Employ the Use of Schema Metadata is SEO
With the aid of Structured Metadata, you can rank higher for some search queries most especially if you have relevant content. SCHEMA data that is well formatted is the best way to get Google to crawl your site and specifically determine what your content is about. Google can comprehend and easily pull data from your website content, so that it would appear in Google Featured snippets. Also it would be important to note that wrong implementation of Google SCHEMA can make you to lose all your rankings. Since featured snippets is where Google pulls data to answer voice search, doing your website SCHEMA right should be your top priority.
#10. Create Video Content to Support your Text Based Content
Adding video content to text based content gives Google that the impression that you are well versed in your blog niche. As a content creator, you should prioritize adding video content as it can boost your articles rankings and help it win the featured snippet position.
For content creators that use tools like SEMRush to investigate what people are searching for, you need to create video content that answer popular queries. Video plus Text-based content should be made a top priority for content creators that want to rank for top positions.