What Does Voice Search Mean for Your Website?

What Does Voice Search Mean for Your Website?

We all love Siri and Google Voice Search – even Cortana – but what does it mean for your website and your website’s SEO?

What Does Voice Search Mean for Your Website?

Why is voice search important?

First, we need to understand why voice search is important before we get into how it impacts business opportunities, business SEO and what you can do to leverage it.

The model of searching using Google is a new take on a historical way of getting information.

As Ivan Bercovich, a VP of engineering at Graphiq put it:

“The old model was us asking the librarian. The new model is us asking a smart friend who is going to give us an answer.”

That’s why this topic is important – we’re not only talking about a different technology, but a fundamentally different way to look for and deliver information. We’re not looking for resources anymore – now, we’re looking for answers.

With this change in how people are searching and what they’re hoping to achieve, we need to shift how we think about SEO.

Verbal searches are three times as likely to be local, so it’s particularly relevant for local SEO success. To do that, we need to understand the differences.

1. Voice search is a lot more conversational

Obviously, because it’s spoken out loud.

When was the last time you said, “small business advertising cheap?”

Probably never, but you might have typed it.

What you would say though might be: “How do I advertise to a small business cheaply?” or “What’s the best way to market my national franchise restaurant to a local audience?”

See the difference?

Voice searches follow this pattern of conversation, which means that your website copy needs to follow the same trend.

The local SEO technique

Write your content the way you would say it so that Google can pull the answer. Another tip is to comb through your search query data in Google Analytics and look for natural-looking queries – odds are, those are the ones coming from voice searches.

2. Voice searches are looking for specific answers

Users are now looking for specific answers with their search. For example, the results to ‘best pizza open after midnight’ won’t be a list of search results. It will be the closest pizza place that is open after midnight. The most successful franchises are going to be the ones who provide such specific answers to questions like this.

The local SEO technique

Develop either an FAQ or a Q&A section of your website. It’s an easy way to make sure you’re covering common questions that people will ask.

3. Voice search is getting more complicated

A keyboard (especially a tiny one on a phone) is no place to type in a long search like ‘if I were going to buy a camera for traveling in South East Asia, what camera should I buy?’

That’s never going to happen. Instead, people will search ‘camera South East Asia buy’

Which is why SEO has focused on keywords for so long – it’s what lazy typists have searched. However, voice search is changing that.

Now, people can say the actual thing they want to find out loud, which is an awful lot easier than typing it out. The result? Long tail keywords are going to be really important.

The local SEO technique

Produce content that addresses long tail keyword demands. Not sure which long tail keywords are driving your traffic? Here’s how you find out:

1. With Google Analytics, you can easily see what people are searching to get to your site. Export that information to Excel.

2. Order the spreadsheet by number of searches.

3. Scroll all the way to the bottom – searches that have only have 1-2 people enter your site through them.

4. Look at the search terms.

Now that you’ve got a good idea of how to find the long tails, start building content to answer whatever those queries are, and use the query as the title to the content. Done. While long tail keywords generally convert higher, you probably shouldn’t optimize for long visits.

Conclusion

Staying on top of the latest marketing SEO trends and strategies for a small business or franchise can be exhausting. But if you’re only going to focus on one thing this year, make it adapting to local voice search. This voice trend is set to explode over the next five years, and companies are already reporting a huge amount of traffic via voice searches.

To keep on top of your SEO game, Siri needs to be able to find you.

Need help? Let our team make your site voice search friendly.

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