The future of voice commands is here. If you think mobile devices have changed how customers find what they need and want, wait until we tell you how much customers are using voice search now! In 2019, only 20% of Google searches were voice-activated. With Alexa, Cortana, Siri, and other voice-enabled devices, that number is expected to be over 50% by 2022.
So what do those numbers mean to you as a business owner? It means you need to get on board and embrace this technology now. No longer is optimizing your website an option with voice searches on the rise.
Voice Search and Traditional Search: The Differences
You need to understand the traditional way of searching for a product or service and voice search to grab your share of sales and traffic. With the keyboard’s traditional search method, you will get organic traffic from the SERP (search engine results page), even without being the number one rank. Why?
Because customers who are searching may not click on the first link, they may scroll down and choose a meta description or title better suited to their needs. Even if your business falls on page two of the search, you may still get some clicks.
When a potential customer asks Siri a question with a voice search, they do not get a list of 10 options. They get one result – only one. So, if your website doesn’t fit the voice search needs, you’re missing out on that one.
Another critical difference between traditional text search and voice search is keywords that dominate. Google prioritizes long-tail keywords, but that option doesn’t exist in a voice search.
Pointers for Voice Search Optimization
Google has a secret: voice search algorithms. However, you can still improve the chance to be that coveted featured spot with your website with these tips:
Answer a Question
Many voice searches are in a question format. If you’re not sure what questions you should answer, some websites generate questions using your keywords. So, by answering the commonly-asked questions, you’ll move your website to that coveted position.
By making the question the H2 tag of your content, you’ll grab the lion’s share of website traffic from voice searches. With a clear and concise answer under the H2 tag, you’ll be within Google’s priority as quality content. In other words, ask the question, then get to the point immediately.
Long-Tail Keywords Optimization
Most businesses optimize short keywords, but that doesn’t work for voice searches. Today, it is all about using the long-tail keywords more conversationally and contextually and more like how a voice search will be presented.
By identifying the possible long-tail search terms, you will maximize the voice search traffic for your website. You can find the most commonly used long-tail keywords by scrolling to the bottom of the Google SERP and reviewing the “People Also Ask” box.
Local Searches Optimized
Local search may be tiring to you, but there is still power to that, even more, today with voice search. Of the voice search users surveyed, over 75% used it for local business finds once a week or more. Over 50% use voice search every day.
You must standardize your NAP listings (Name, Address, Phone), optimize your site with local keywords, and claim your listings and reviews. Your GMB (Google My Business) listings should be optimized if you want business from voice searches. The information must be accurate and current, including the business address and hours.
The Right Words
Twenty-five words are the triggers to 20% of every voice search. Words like these are included in that list of 25 words:
With content focused on these words, your website will jump before your competitors, grab your share of voice search traffic, and more, as long as these words are incorporated right in your content. Make sure to answer the questions correctly with proper tags and markers to be readable by Google.
Speed Up Your Site
Those who utilize voice search expect instant results. Studies have found that a site taking FIVE seconds to load is 90% more likely to bounce than a site taking ONE second. Yes, consumers have gotten that impatient, and Google has accommodated them.
Today, voice search has become even more critical to have the maximum speed for your website. A slow-loading website won’t be the first chosen by Google because Google’s mission is to give the customer what they want.