People rely more and more on voice assistants for search. When looking for a quick piece of information, it is becoming second nature to ask Alexa, Google or Siri, rather than having to type our query on Google.
With 27% of the online global population using voice search on mobile already in 2018, we can only expect for the interest in voice search optimization to grow amongst website owners and businesses.
What is voice search optimization?
Let’s start explaining what voice search optimization is. In the words of Codedesign:
Voice search optimization is the process of upgrading and streamlining the information on your pages to appear in voice searches.
In other words, voice search optimization aims to make your website searchable by voice through digital tools like Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant. The goal is for your page to be the first result that is ultimately read out loud, when a user enquires about information linked to your website.
What’s the difference between SEO and voice search optimization?
What SEO does for pushing up a page amongst the first results on your browser, voice search optimization can do that for voice search.
So is voice search optimization the new SEO? Realistically, SEO is not going to disappear any time soon and voice search optimization depends on it.
Still, websites need to be updated to fit within the voice paradigm to be able to fully take advantage of the potential of smart devices and other voice first technologies. And with 58% of online adults having used voice search and 33% using it monthly already in early 2019, right now seems to be the best time to start working on voice search optimization.
Strategies to Optimize your Content for Voice Search
Create Content catering to Rich Answers
To provide users with the most useful results, Google prioritizes rich answers to questions. So, creating content that contains a knowledge panel or a featured snippet is a great way to start.
What are knowledge panels and featured snippets? Here’s a recap of two key SEO terms:
- Knowledge Panels are information boxes that appear on Google when you search for entities (people, places, organizations, things) that are in the Knowledge Graph. Google’s knowledge graph is its knowledge base, connecting and storing all data.
- Featured snippets are short extracts of text, e.g. a definition or a list, that appear at the top of the search results.
As Google tries to provide users with the best and quickest answer to their queries, rich answers, containing knowledge panels or featured snippets, are positioned above the organic results.
Think Long-Tail Keywords
When using voice search users tend to phrase their queries differently than if they were typing them, so using long-tail keywords is a wise response.
Most voice searches use question words like what, when, where, why, how. Incorporating these keywords into your content as well as including other long-tail variations of your prime keywords is a great way to optimize your website for voice search. An easy way to do this is using the FAQ section to provide relevant answers to popular questions.
Local SEO and Voice Search
Local SEO is the local/geolocalized positioning of a website on a search engine and it works perfectly combined with voice search. By optimizing online presence in relation to geolocalization, businesses can be easily found by users who ask their voice assistants about a product or service “closeby” or “near me”.
With 58% of consumers using voice search to find local business information, local SEO is something to definitely look into to optimize for voice search.
Inspired to explore a voice-forward strategy for your company? We can help.