Voice search SEO is here, and it’s here to stay. So how can you get your content ready for the voice revolution?
VOICE SEARCH SEO: DO YOUR KEYWORD RESEARCH
Keywords are crucial to any SEO strategy. But they are slightly different for voice search, so it’s important to think strategically.
There are three key principles of voice search SEO:
- It’s friendlier and more conversational than traditional search
- Search entries are longer and often framed as questions
- Search entries are more specific and may require lateral thinking
Targeting voice search queries means you have to think outside the box.
Similarly, thinking laterally around your brand, products and industry can help you rank for more semantically related questions, increasing your brand presence and organic visibility in the process.
Because voice searches are lengthy, long-tail keywords are even more important than before. This may even include whole questions or full sentences.
Once you’ve collected your keyword data, these two questions can help you determine which keywords to focus your efforts on:
- Which of these keywords are likely to be used in voice searches?
- Of these, which are relevant for your company and will help acquire qualified users that are valuable to your brand?
While a more conversational tone may help you rank better for voice search, it’s important to protect your brand voice and maintain consistency.
AIM FOR ZERO
For certain queries, Google currently ranks featured snippets above all other pages, containing information Google deems most relevant to the search query.
Users rely on featured snippets not only for information but also for identifying the source. So if you want to rank in voice search SEO, it’s essential to make your content worthy of a featured snippet.
You can do this by making your content easily extractable. You want Google to be able to find information on your website quickly and easily.
Breaking text into manageable chunks is also important. Text-rich paragraphs are difficult to extract into a featured snippet – and are even less equipped for answering voice searches. So make sure to separate your information out clearly.
FAQs, recipes and methodologies are all great for voice search because they often contain the most direct answers to customer questions. It’s important that they’re easy to find, represent your brand and contain accurate information.
FOLLOW GOOGLE’S GUIDELINES FOR VOICE SEARCH QUERIES
There are four key criteria you need to keep in mind for voice search:
- Information satisfaction: The information you provide needs to be relevant and answer the question.
- Length: Find a middle ground between too much and too little content.
- Formulation: Grammatically correct sentences are important.
- Elocution: Content needs to be pronounced correctly, so avoid using complex language.
Meet these criteria by making sure your content is clear, concise and correct – no matter the language.
KEEP IT LOCAL
Users will likely ask local questions – whether that’s for directions or restaurant recommendations. Searches like “What’s a good Thai restaurant near me?” are much more likely than “Thai restaurant Lodo Denver.”
This is particularly important for brick-and-mortar stores looking to attract customers. To rank for these searches, you’ll need more than just good website content. Up-to-date information on Google My Business and other authoritative review sites like Yelp are crucial; a strong presence on relevant local directories is also advisable.
Both tourists and residents will be making voice searches, so you should definitely consider covering multiple languages if it makes sense for your brand. You can do this by identifying your key audience demographics and the languages they speak. Catering to them as a starting point and expanding as needed later will help you build a successful voice search strategy.
GET READY FOR ADVERTISING
In an eMarketer survey, over a quarter of respondents said they would listen to an ad if it were personalized based on their searches or if they got to choose which brands they listened to. So be prepared to make a real connection with customers by:
And there are ways you can prepare for this.
- Making sure your brand voice and identity are consistent.
- Connecting consistently with your audience across relevant voice search touch points.
By establishing these principles now, you can make sure that when voice advertising becomes a reality, it will feel like a natural extension of an existing customer relationship.