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Take Advantage of Voice Search Trends

Voice search is exploding. Comscore has predicted that voice search will account for 50% of searches by 2020. More stats here. This trends coincides with advances in technology that make it all possible: “natural language” search and artificial intelligence.

It’s time to tweak your SEO strategy to incorporate voice optimization and gain an edge over competitors. As usual, high-value services have the most to gain (or lose) depending on how well they engage the voice-search trend, but every organization can benefit.

I boiled-down several sources including the recent Backlinko study of 10,000 voice searches into a few actionable steps. Surprise — many of the voice search optimization tactics here are exactly the same as general SEO tactics — just goes to show that fundamentals don’t change that much.

Voice Search Facts

  • Long-tail keywords account for approximately 70% of all search queries, meaning they’re less competitive – but no less important. (wordstream.com)
  • BrightLocal , 56% of all voice searches are made on a smartphone. (semrush.com)
  • Optimize for Rich Answers voice search study found that “70% of all answers returned from voice searches occupied a SERP feature (with 60% of those returning a Featured Snippet result). (semrush.com)
  • Let’s look at some recent stats… 41% of adults (and 55% of teens) use voice search daily ( Google 20% of all Google mobile queries are voice searches (backlinko.com)
  • And when you dig deeper, things get even more interesting… 25% of all Windows 10 desktop searches are done via voice (backlinko.com)
  • Speaking of… 65% of Google Home or Amazon echo owners “can’t imagine going back” ( Geomarketing Smart speakers are the next refrigerator – every home will have one. (backlinko.com)
  • In fact, nearly 60% of mobile searchers use voice search at least “some of the time” ( Stone Temple Finally, voice search is more convenient. (backlinko.com)
  • (In fact, Google states that 70% of searches on Google Assistant use “natural language”.) (backlinko.com)

Overall Strategy

  • Answer Specific Questions: Use Topic or your own experience to find common questions on your chosen subject, and use that as a basis to create your copy. Include the question as an H2 heading, and answer it in the body text directly below.
  • Answer Questions Concisely: Google wants to feature the best answer, so make sure yours is clear and easily digestible. Don’t use jargon that audience doesn’t use. Answers in the form of lists work well in featured snippets.
  • Write Engaging Copy: 99.58% of featured snippets come from pages that rank in the top 10. Ensure your page is well-optimized: your content should be engaging, your meta data optimized, and your internal and external link building strong.

Specific Optimizations

Optimize Website Speed and Security

Mobile Friendly

  • Make sure your site is mobile-friendly, with an easy to read layout that automatically adjust to phones and tables. Use short paragraphs, simple language, and plenty of headings to break-up logical sections.

Schema Markup

  • Use schema markup so that search engines know exactly what you content is about.  Easiest solution is to use a schema plugin.

Google Listing

Social Media Engagement Affects Ranking

  • Your posts, which include your voice-search content should be shared in social media. More social activity is related to higher ranking

Match Content to Voice Searches

  • Create blog posts that dovetail with the questions your audience is asking
  • Keep answers to specific questions short and sweet — 30 words or so
  • But also realize that voice search results are typically pulled from long posts: 2,000+ words on average. Therefore, answer specific questions within your long-form, authoritative post. Maybe a series of topic-focused FAQ pages.

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