With developments in voice recognition technology, voice search looks to be on the rise in 2019. Although still early days, it is definitely worth bearing-in-mind and optimising your business online for the instances where it is relevant. Results from 2018 show 13% (around 420 million) of Google searches were mobile voice queries, including those from smart speakers.
What is voice search?
Simply put voice search allows users to search the web with a voice command rather than typing. This method of searching is meant to be easier for users than typing a query however at the moment that is not always the case. A quick search for hashtags such as #AlexaFails or #SiriFails will show you why!
How could voice search influence my business?
While currently, voice search will not have a massive impact on your business’s website traffic, further research and improvements are constantly being made to the UX and the use of voice search looks to increase. However, there is no need for panic and a complete SEO strategy change, but voice search optimisation is definitely something worth thinking about and keeping an eye on.
With the rise of smart speakers in homes, experts are predicting an increase of voice search being used for shopping, which is something worth being mindful of as an e-commerce business. The main thing we do know for sure is that at the moment voice searches are based strongly on local presence. So as a business this will be where you might see the most change.
What can I do to make my SEO more voice search friendly?
At this time most of the current statistics on voice search are predictions and no one is 100% sure on how exactly it will affect SEO and the changes needed to make it succeed. Nevertheless, there are some changes you can make to help prepare your website and make it a little more voice search friendly.
Local Search: We know that currently voice search is mainly used for local searches, the “near me” searches. With this in mind, you should have your location on your website as well as social media platforms. It’s key to keep your Google My Business (GMB) details, reviews and images up-to-date as this is Google’s main source of finding information about your business, and if you don’t have a GMB account, get one! It is also worth posting regularly on your G+ account, engaging with local businesses and events, as this is closely linked to your GMB.
Question-Based Search: Most voice searches are question-based, your who, where, when, how and what. This is why FAQ pages are great, not only do they make good business sense as the majority of people will research before investing in a product or service, but they could help raise your online profile via voice search. Spend some time getting the wording of your questions right and think about how users might ask questions verbally, not just written.
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