Last Updated: October 2023
Voice search is becoming increasingly popular as people use their smart speakers and mobile devices to search for information, products, and services. According to comScore, by 2020, 50% of all searches will be conducted by voice. With this trend, optimizing for voice search is vital to ensure that your website, content, and business get found by voice assistants like Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, Google Assistant, and Microsoft’s Cortana.
Why Voice Search Matters
“When it comes to voice search, it’s all about providing the right information to your customer at the right time.” – Katherine Hays, Co-founder & CEO of Vivoom
Voice search presents an opportunity for businesses to reach their target audience at the right time with the right information. Voice searches tend to be more conversational and longer than typed searches. Users are more likely to ask a question than type a keyword. For instance, someone may ask, “What’s the best pizza place near me that delivers?” rather than type “pizza delivery near me.” Voice search also tends to yield fewer results, with the voice assistant usually reading the top result. Therefore, optimizing for voice search means getting featured in the answer box or position zero, which can substantially increase your visibility and click-through rates.
How to Optimize for Voice Search
Here are some tips on how to optimize your website and content for voice search:
1. Focus on Conversational Keywords
When optimizing for voice search, it is essential to use long-tail, conversational keywords that people are likely to use when speaking. For instance, instead of targeting “coffee maker,” you can target “What’s the best coffee maker for a small kitchen?” or “What’s the cheapest coffee maker with a timer?” Tools like Answer The Public and LSIGraph can help you find the most common questions asked by your target audience, which you can then use to create content and optimize your website.
2. Improve Your Website’s Loading Speed
Voice assistants prioritize fast-loading websites. Therefore, it is crucial to optimize your website’s loading speed to rank higher in voice search results. You can use tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights and GTMetrix to analyze your website’s loading speed and suggest ways to improve it, such as reducing image sizes, enabling caching, and minifying code.
3. Optimize Your Google My Business Listing
If your business has a physical location, optimizing your Google My Business listing can increase your chances of appearing in local voice search results. Ensure that your listing is complete and up-to-date, with accurate business hours, contact details, and category. You can also encourage customers to leave reviews, which can boost your ranking and credibility.
4. Create FAQ Pages and Structured Data
Voice search relies heavily on featured snippets or answer boxes, which provide a summary of the most relevant information. Creating FAQ pages with concise and clear answers to frequently asked questions can increase your chances of getting featured as the answer to a voice search query. Structured data markup can also help voice assistants understand the content better, making it easier for them to serve relevant results to users.
5. Use Natural Language in Your Content
When creating content, focus on using natural language that speaks to your target audience. Avoid jargon, technical terms, and complex sentences that can confuse voice assistants and users. Use short paragraphs, bullet points, and subheadings to break down your content into manageable chunks that are easy to read and understand.
6. Optimize for Mobile Devices
Voice search is primarily done on mobile devices, so optimizing your website for mobile is critical. Ensure that your website is mobile-friendly, with a responsive design, fast loading time, and easy navigation. You can use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to check if your website is optimized for mobile devices.
Voice search is revolutionizing the way people search for information, products, and services. Optimizing for voice search can increase your visibility, click-through rates, and ultimately, your revenue. By focusing on conversational keywords, improving your website’s loading speed, optimizing your Google My Business listing, creating FAQ pages and structured data, using natural language in your content, and optimizing for mobile devices, you can increase your chances of ranking higher in voice search results.
Optimizing for voice search is not an option but a necessity for businesses that want to stay ahead of the competition. By following the tips above, you can improve your website’s visibility and reach your target audience when they need your products or services the most. Voice search presents an opportunity for businesses to provide personalized and relevant information that meets the needs and preferences of their customers. As voice search continues to grow, businesses that embrace it and optimize for it will be best positioned to succeed in the future.