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, voice search marketing is booming: according to Quora, in 2020 voice search will account for 50% of searches carried out. So what makes voice search in marketing so popular?
For some people, it’s the human-like interaction. When a computer starts to feel more like a companion, internet searching suddenly becomes a lot more appealing and familiar.
However, for a lot of users, it’s simply more convenient. Voice search is perfect for busy, multitasking parents. Alternatively, it still benefits people who just want to know who that actor was in that film when their hands are full.
Voice search assistants exploded onto the scene with Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana. Since then, Voice Search has evolved.
It’s developed from mostly a novelty to an essential for any brand’s online marketing strategy.
Voice search marketing has shifted brands’ relationships with their customers to more personal spaces. As a result, this has created more direct communication between a potential consumer and their AI friend.
So how can YOU optimise your content for voice search in marketing, and how are the top dogs doing it?
How to optimise your content for voice search marketing
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) pages
Ever searched a question in Google and a box appears with a list of questions related to your search?
When you click on one of these questions, a drop down appears with a snippet of webpage content. What’s more, once you click on a question, a few more questions appear at the bottom of the list related to the one you just selected.
These are called ‘Featured Snippets’. They aim to answer user’s questions straight away without them having to measure which is the right link to click.
But what’s this got to do with FAQ pages?
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 ask the question as if you’re talking to someone, and your content should honour this.
This is where Google’s Featured Snippets come in – having a comprehensive FAQ page will help you appear in these snippets.
The first step is finding out what the most-asked questions are within your topic.
To do this, you can use a website like Answer The Public. (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. Clearly, now is the time to expand voice search in marketing to welcome video content.
To go one step further with your FAQs, re-purpose them into explainer videos or one longer Q&A video. This way, any further questions the user may have searched are answered straight away.
Use long tail keywords
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.
Furthermore, voice search queries aren’t always questions. Sometimes they’re statements, such as ‘best places to eat in Shoreditch’. However, 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 in marketing.
Another tip for voice search optimisation include keeping your contact information up to date. This is because a lot of people use voice search to find this key information quickly and conveniently.
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.
How are brands using voice search marketing?
Skills and chatbots
Estée Lauder partnered with Google Home to bring customers ‘Liv’, a voice-activated skincare expert.
Liv provides succinct answers to user queries and often recommends Estée Lauder in her answers.
Domino’s had a similar idea with their Amazon Skill character ‘Dom’ featured on the Amazon Echo.
Dom responds to queries in fun ways and even lets you place orders by voice. However, the latter is only possible if you’ve registered an Easy Order profile on the Domino’s app.
Unsurprisingly, voice search assistants cannot differentiate between real voices and voices from a machine.
In 2017, this worked in Burger King‘s favour. The fast food chain achieved a viral campaign when their television ad set off Google Home Hubs nationwide. The ad featured the question ‘Ok Google, what is the Whopper burger?’, prompting the speakers to answer.
The ad’s explosion even stole the spotlight from the Grand Prix in Cannes.
What the future holds for voice search
According to predictions, the future of voice search in marketing is bright.
In response to this, brands that redesign their websites for voice search marketing will increase their e-commerce revenue by 30% by 2021.
All signs point to voice search marketing 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.
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