Top 5 Ways to Optimize for Voice Search20-08-2018
Typing a query in a search engine is so 2010. Nowadays, users can find information online by conveniently speaking their query out loud to the search engine and getting an answer back instantly. The answer can either come back through voice or else through a link to a website where the user will likely find the answer to his/her question. This is what Voice Search is all about.
Considering that studies have shown that 40% of adults conduct a voice search once per day, Voice Search is a trend you cannot afford to miss out on.
As a digital marketer, you must keep in mind that typically people do not speak in the same way as they type. This means that websites optimized for the way users type may not always be compatible with the way users speak. Therefore, although an entire SEO strategy revamp is not the answer here, it is crucial to make subtle changes to help your website rank better for voice search queries.
The following are what we believe are the top five ways to optimize for Voice Search!
Focus on Earning a Featured Snippet
Featured snippets are selected search results that appear on top of Google’s organic results, below the ads in a separate box. They provide an accurate answer to a user’s query. A recent study analysed the search results of 1,000 voice searches and found that 87% of the time the voice answers came from featured snippets.
There are several ways how one can aim to win the top spot, but one advanced way of doing so is by using schema markup. Schema markup can be defined as code which you place on your website to help the search engines understand your content better and hence, return more valuable results to users.
By adapting your content in such a way as to address user questions and by making sure you are answering in the best possible way, you’ll also be increasing your chances of ranking in Position 0.
Write Conversational Content
A study by Google concluded that 70% of searches via Google Assistant are conversational in nature. In other words, very often, persons using voice search address a question to the search engine as if they were addressing it to another person.
Consequently, to optimize for voice search, you need to write content that reflects the natural way of conversing. You can achieve this by reflecting how your audience speaks about your business, products and/or services. To be more accurate, you should use tools, such as Answer The Public, which neatly display a list of questions users are searching about your topic.
Open an FAQ page
Since users mainly use voice search to ask questions in conversational language, a clever way to optimize for voice search is by creating a detailed FAQ page on your website. By using the actual questions which users ask as headings in this page and by answering in the most precise way possible, you’ll be increasing your chance of ranking for such voice queries. One thing to remember is that when users perform a voice search, they only want direct answers.
Ensure your website is mobile-friendly
According to Global Web Index, 25% of individuals ages 16-24 use voice search on mobile. And it makes sense as both the voice search feature and mobile devices were intended to be used on the go.
Therefore, having a mobile-friendly website is an indispensable practice for any webmaster out there. Some principal ways how to become mobile-friendly are: by using a responsive design, by optimizing page load time and by using 14-point font and buttons in the content.
Claim your Google My Business listing
What’s more, Search Engine Watch found that mobile voice searches are three times more likely to be local-based than text searches. Thus, if you own a local business within a specific geographic location, this point is especially crucial for you.
In this case, to optimize for voice search, you must ensure you have a Google My Business profile set up and that your business’ name, address and phone number have been inserted accurately in the listings. This is important as when someone conducts a local search, most typically using the search query “near me”, the search engines do not determine what to show that person based on how well-optimized pages are. Instead, the device determines the user’s location and pulls listings from such online directories as Google My Business or Bing Places for Business.
With Google’s voice recognition currently striking a 92% accuracy, the number of voice searches conducted is bound to continue rising. It is predicted that by 2020, 50% of searches will be voice. This is the right time to step up your SEO game!
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