It seems like manual typing for your search query or doing a search action will soon going to become a past. It’s all because now voice search is taking its place. Now you may ask why should I be concerned about ‘voice searches’, then my dear by now when I am writing this post 40-50% of the searches and search actions are done by voice using voice search assistants, crazy, isn’t it? And if you are not building your voice presence online in the next 6-12 months, you are going to hurt your business online presence. Take this, just in 2017 voice search was a $1.8 billion dollar industry and this is 2020, I think you got my concern by now.
In this blog, we will cover all the basic things that you need to know about voice search, what strategies to follow to benefit your business from it and voice search SEO.\
Traditional Search vs Voice Search
As we are covering the basics here, first we must understand what is the difference between traditional search and voice search. Traditional search is done by typing out a keyword or the search term (as we all know) in a search engine like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc., and the results are returned in information in visual form.
On the other hand, voice searches are more conversational based on long-tail keywords, and commonly the search and result delivery is done by voice assistants in audio format, we just have to deliver long-tail keyword commands to these assistants.
Before diving deep into its implications, first, we must understand how these voice searches are executed and which technology and platforms it utilizes.
Voice searches are executed by assistants (a voice search technology) which is integrated with different voice-compatible devices such as smartphones, smart speakers like Alexa, watches, etc.
There are many different voice assistants available depending on which device you use.
This voice assistant is provided by Google and comes integrated with Android phones, Google Chromecast, many different smartwatches, and speakers.
Google had also arrived with ‘Google Bert Update’ to cater to its voice search needs.
Google Assistant pulls out results through the Google Search Engine (obviously), Google My Business, etc. To come up with the Google Assistant searches one can utilize platforms like Google Actions Console, which allows you to make or optimize your web/app with the types of information that Google Assistants pulls out.
The common phrase to activate Google Assistants is ‘ok Google’
Is around with us for a long time now. This voice assistant is provided by Apple and comes in integrated with mostly all the apple devices from iPhones, iWatch, MacBook, etc.
Apple Siri utilizes Bing, Apple Maps, Yelp to pull out data as a voice search result.
And to interact with the Siri Assistant environment you can work with Apple Siri shortcuts or Siri Kits.
Another famous voice assistant, provided by Amazon and it mostly comes equipped with Alexa smart speakers like Amazon Echo, etc.
Alexa pulls out data from Yext, Bing, Yelp, etc. And to interact and optimize for Amazon Alexa you can work with a platform like Alexa Skills.
Microsoft Cortana comes in equipped with all the devices that utilize Microsoft Windows.
It utilizes the environment of Microsoft and uses Alex as its voice assistant coz Microsoft doesn’t have its own search environment.
Hence same as Alexa, Microsoft Cortana also pulls out search results from Bing, yelp and you can interact with its voice environment through Alexa Skills.
We got which platforms utilize who, by now. Now questions come, how to optimize for voice search SEO.
Before understanding that we must understand the intent of voice search, which can be:
When we ask questions like ‘Ok Google, locate the best cardiologist near me”, we are doing a voice action. Now the SEO strategy lies here only. If you are a cardiologist or business-like that, first you have to understand that these searches are done on smartphones mostly or smart speakers, through this you get the idea about which voice assistant to utilize and as we discussed above, how these assistants pull out data, we just have to optimize on those areas.
With voice action, you must be more focused on platforms like Google My Business, Apple Maps, Benign Maps, Rich Snippet, etc.
Voice Action is more local-based searches, so if you have a local business you must focus on voice action intent-based keywords.
Talking about voice search, it mostly consists of ‘how to’ based search queries. Hence if you are saying, ‘Ok Google, what is a cardiologist doctor’ you are doing a voice search. And for these non-local-focused searches. To optimize for such voice search SEO, one should focus on optimizing its web/app for search engines like Google, Bing Yelp, etc. based on what devices your audience/customer use for voice search.
Quick SEO tips for Voice Search SEO
- From stats, it is clear that mobile-related voice search into the phone is three-time likely to be location-based, so look for your audience/customer what all devices they utilize.
- Voice search-optimized web/app templates can be utilized to come in voice search results.
- DA and PA stills matter for voice search, hence focus on that too.
- Register your business on Google, Apple, Bing Maps.
- Add rich snippets to your website.
- Try to rank for the keyword in the first 5, as these assistants pull out data from these top 5 results only.
- Focus more on long-tail keywords.
- Utilize consoles like Google Actions, Siri Kits, Alexa Skills, etc. to interact with voice environments and optimize for voice search.
- Use tools like SEMrush to search voice-specific keywords.