Voice Search allows you to say your search queries instead of typing them, and rids you of the need for a computer to type them into. What’s more, it’s booming: according to Quora, in 2020 Voice Search will account for 50% of searches carried out. So what makes Voice Search so popular?
For some people, it’s the human-like interaction. When a computer no longer feels much like a computer and instead more of a companion, internet searching suddenly becomes a lot more fun, appealing and familiar. However, for a lot of Voice Search users it’s simply because it’s more convenient – it’s perfect for busy, multitasking parents, or people who just want to know who that actor was in that film when they’re busy driving their car.
Voice Search assistants exploded onto the scene with the introduction of Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana. Since then, Voice Search has evolved from mostly a novelty to not only an advantageous feature for the modern family, but an essential for any brand’s online marketing strategy.
Voice Search has shifted brands’ relationships with their customers to more personal spaces, creating more direct communication between a potential consumer and their AI friend. So how can you optimise YOUR content for Voice Search, and how are the top dogs doing it?
How to optimise your content for Voice Search
Ever searched a question in Google and a box appears pinned to the top with your answer so you don’t even have to visit a website? Underneath, there may also be a ‘People also ask’ section with further instant results.
That’s a Google ‘Featured Snippet’. They aim to answer user’s questions straight away without them having to measure which is the right link to click.
FAQ pages are a goldmine for reaching Voice Search users, because these users are way more likely to search full questions using natural language. For example, they might say ‘what is the weather like in Wakefield today?’ over the usual typed ‘Wakefield weather’. It’s easier to say as if you’re talking to a person, and your content should honour this.
The first step is finding out what the most-asked questions are within your topic, using a website such as answerthepublic.com. (If you visit this site, prepare to be greeted by a lifelike video of a man pondering your imminent search like he’s right in front of you!)
OptinMonster says video will be 82% of all consumer traffic in 2020, so now is the time to expand Voice Search to welcome video content.
To go one step further with your FAQs, repurpose them into explainer videos or one longer Q&A video, where any further questions the user may have searched are answered straight away.
We’ve already mentioned that Voice Search users have a more conversational approach to searching. This also means that you should focus on combining keywords to match these queries. These are called long tail keywords.
Voice Search queries aren’t always questions – sometimes they’re statements, such as ‘best places to eat in Shoreditch’ – but they both contain long tail keywords that make up a more natural tone.
In general, keep your SEO more conversational if you want to target Voice Search.
Our other tips for Voice Search optimisation include keeping your contact information up to date, as many people use Voice Search to find this out.
The more content you have on a page, the more likely it is to match a voice search query. Be careful, though – the typical length of a single voice search result is 29 words. Therefore, be clever about what phrases you DO use and vary the content so it can answer different search questions. Shorten answers to popular consumer searches for the best chance to get in the Featured Snippets.
Estée Lauder partnered with Google Home to bring customers ‘Liv’, a voice-activated skincare expert who provides succinct answers to user queries and often recommends Estée Lauder in its answers.
Domino’s had a similar idea with their Amazon Skill character ‘Dom’ featured on the Amazon Echo, who responds to queries in fun ways and even lets you place orders by voice if you’ve registered an Easy Order profile on the Domino’s app.
Voice Search assistants can’t differentiate between real voices and voices on a television. In 2017, Burger King achieved a viral campaign when their television ad featuring the question ‘Ok Google, what is the Whopper burger?’ set off Google Home Hubs nationwide, stealing the spotlight from the Grand Prix in Cannes.
According to predictions, the future of Voice Search in marketing is bright.
In response to this increase, brands that redesign their websites for voice search will increase their e-commerce revenue by 30% by 2021.
All signs point to Voice Search if you want to take your brand to the next level. Try these tips and watch your reach grow to include voice, not just screen.
Check out more of our marketing tips from our blog here.