We all know what Voice Search is and what are the opportunities it brings for digital marketing, especially SEO. However, an important aspect to this is Voice Search Optimization. There are still a few myths or confusion revolving within the digital ecosystems about Voice Search Optimization.
Smartphones and smart home devices featuring assistants like Siri, Cortana, Google Assistant, and Alexa are taking over our lives.
The study says that by 2020 almost 40% of website sessions (visits) will be conducted without a screen, now how is that even possible. How can visits happen without a screen? Learn more about digital marketing trends in 2020.
Voice-only search will allow visitors to look through the web without scrolling through the websites on desktops and mobiles. This emerging technology will be key to many successful brands soon.
So, what it means for SEO? Here are a few ways to optimize your brand website, which helps them rank higher in Google SERPs for voice-enabled searches.
Getting Featured Snippets on SERPs:
If you aren’t acquainted with the term Featured Snippets, Featured Snippets are a structured format within Google SERPs, which are supposed to help potential searchers with crisp and to-the-point answers for their questions. Due to their interactive nature in which they appear on Google Search Results, many brands/SEO experts have seen a considerable uplift in their Click Through Rate (CTR).
Understanding User Intentions:
Now that’s a tricky part of the game! Understanding user intentions isn’t easy. What is your target audience looking for, what are they searching for, what are they interested in are some of the questions a brand/digital marketer might need to consider?
With regular algorithm updates, search engines are becoming smart. They “learn” your language, accent, and other patterns in the way you speak.
Sometimes, intentions are clearly expressed in queries with words like buy, how-to, what is, etc. But most of the time, intentions may or may not be expressed.
When you search for restaurants typing on your phone or computer, you might write “best restaurants in Mumbai.” This is a computer language.
If you use voice search, you will probably ask a question, like “Which restaurant serves dinner now?” or ask for “veg restaurant near me?”.
Claim and Optimize Google My Business listing:
Voice search sees a high number of local queries. It’s essential to keep your business listings clean and your name, address, and phone (NAP) data consistent.
You must help your customers find you.
It could prove to be a good move to share your business information in your website’s footer.
There are mainly two different ways in which a user might search for a local business.
- Candlelight dinner restaurant in Mumbai – In such cases, if you have optimized your website content for local keywords, then you have a chance to appear higher in search results.
- Candlelight dinner restaurant near me – For such questions, Google relies on the user’s location and turns toward Google My Business listings.
Another vital task you must practice is to describe your products and service in about 300-400 words and selecting the right category relevant to your business.
A few high-quality pictures with proper titles of your business to make sure your prospects to visit your store.
Around $10 billion are lost each year just because of missing and inaccurate listings. That said, it is essential to provide accurate information about your business.
If you want to win the voice search game, it is a must to have a mobile-friendly website. That said, you do not have to redesign your whole website to make it mobile-friendly. Google recommends having a responsive web design.
Check your website’s mobile compatibility with Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool.
If everything is fine with your website, you will get the above message when you perform the Mobile-Friendly test.
In case Google’s mobile-friendly test shows such messages, it means your website is not mobile-friendly. The test will show you the areas you need improvement to make your website mobile-friendly.
If you think you are done by passing the mobile-friendly test, you are wrong. The next important thing is page speed. Your website needs to load fast. You can use Page Speed Insights to get details of your page load speed.
The score is 43 on the mobile page speed test, and Google listed a few optimizations to improve the website’s performance on mobile.
Last but not least, you must ensure that the content on your best site is readable. You must write your content using short sentences, leaving space, small paragraphs, and sub-headings.
Create content answering your customer’s questions:
When people use voice search, they are looking for answers to their questions. Questions can be of any type like how, what, when, where, etc. You must find the natural language keyword phrases that your target audience is most likely to ask. Conversational, long-tail keywords phrases in your content might do the trick and can help better answer the questions.
The content you create should be simple and easy to understand to drive conversions at an easy reading level. Most companies think having an FAQ page will be sufficient. Instead, creating a blog post based on your customer’s questions might be a good content strategy. Creating content around customers’ questions significantly increases your chances of appearing higher in voice search results.
Search engines look at your content differently. Schema markup or also called as structured data can help make your content more relevant for voice search results. Using schema markup helps search engines to organize and classify your content.
There are a few types of structured data formats like Microdata, RDFa, and JSON-LD. Google Structured Data Testing Tool will help you run schema testing and modify structured data.
Though we are still unsure about the future of voice search incorporating these strategies into your overall optimization efforts will make sure that you are prepared to capture new voice traffic as adoption continues to grow.