Why Voice Search is the Future of Digital Marketing
In the last few years, voice search has gained popularity as a convenient and fast way for people to find the information they need. With the increasing number of smart home devices and voice assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant, voice search is rapidly becoming the preferred search method for many users. As a result, online businesses need to optimise their digital marketing strategies to keep up with this trend. In this article, let’s explore why voice search is the future of digital marketing and provide tips on how to optimise for it.
The rise of voice search is fueled by several factors, including:
- Convenience: Voice search provides a fast and convenient way for users to get the information they need, without the need to type or scroll through pages.
- Increased mobile usage: Mobile usage has been on the rise in recent years, and voice search is particularly well-suited to mobile devices, where typing can be difficult or inconvenient. For example, every time I drive I use Siri to call numbers (Siri: Say “call” or “dial” followed by a number.)
- A growing number of smart devices: The popularity of smart home devices and voice assistants like Alexa and Google Nest Mini has led to an increase in voice searches. With these devices becoming more affordable and accessible, it’s expected that voice search usage will continue to grow. For example, I would never ever search for the weather forecast as asking Alexa is so much easier and more convenient.
- Accuracy: Voice assistants are becoming increasingly accurate in understanding natural language, making voice search an appealing option for users. Well if they understand my accent they are good enough. Lol. Ok Google, do you love me?
- Brand loyalty: Voice assistants often default to the top result for a given search, which means that businesses that rank well in voice search results are likely to benefit from increased brand loyalty and recognition. When you think about it there is only one result – the top one and there are no search result pages (SERPs).
How to optimise for voice search
Given these factors, it’s clear that voice search is set to become an essential component of digital marketing in the years to come. Here are some tips for optimising your digital marketing strategy for voice search.
Focus on conversational keywords
When optimising your content for voice search, it’s important to use conversational keywords that match the way people speak. Unlike traditional search, where users tend to use shorter phrases and keywords, voice search is more conversational in nature. People tend to ask questions in a natural, conversational way (the way they talk to other human beings), so it’s important to tailor your content to reflect this.
To optimise for conversational keywords, you can use long-tail keywords that include natural phrases and questions. For example, instead of using the keyword that everybody will type in Google “best Italian restaurants” you could use a long-tail keyword like “what are the best Italian restaurants in my area?”. In short ‘write the way you speak’.
Optimise for featured snippets
Featured snippets are short snippets of text that appear at the top of the search results, providing users with quick and concise answers to their queries. Since voice assistants often read out these snippets when responding to voice searches, it’s important to optimise your content to appear in these snippets.
To optimise for featured snippets, you should aim to provide concise, high-quality answers to common questions in your niche. Use bullet points (HTML Lists), HTML tables, and other visual aids to make your content more accessible and easy to read.
Make your content mobile-friendly
Since most voice searches are conducted on mobile devices, it’s essential to ensure that your content is mobile-friendly. This means using responsive design, optimising your images, and ensuring that your site loads quickly on mobile devices (page speed is a ranking factor!). Make sure that your site is easy to navigate and that your content is easily readable on a small screen.
Use structured data
Structured data is a type of code that helps search engines better understand the content of your website. By using structured data, you can provide more contextual information to search engines about your content, making it easier for them to understand and index your web pages.
To optimise for voice search, you should use structured data to provide information about your business, including your location, contact information, and opening hours. This will make it easier for voice assistants to find and present information about your business to users.
Optimise for local search
Local search is an important aspect of voice search optimisation, as naturally many voice searches are related to local businesses and services. To optimise for local search, you should ensure that your business information is accurate and up-to-date across all relevant platforms, including your website, Google My Business, and other local directories.
Make sure that your business information is consistent across all platforms (including social media), including your name, business address, and business phone number. This will help search engines match your business with relevant voice search queries.
Use natural language
When optimising your content for voice search, it’s important to use natural language that matches the way people speak. Avoid using jargon or overly technical language that may not be understood by the average user.
Use simple, straightforward language that is easy to understand, and avoid using long, complicated sentences. This will make it easier for voice assistants to understand and present your content to users.
Consider the user intent
User intent is the reason behind a user’s search query. Understanding user intent is important for optimising your content for voice search, as it will help you to provide relevant, high-quality content that matches the user’s needs.
To optimise for user intent, consider the questions that users are likely to ask, and provide high-quality, relevant content that answers these questions. Use natural language and provide concise, informative answers that match the user’s needs.
Use multimedia content
Multimedia content, such as images and videos, can be particularly effective for optimizing your content for voice search. Voice assistants can present this content to users in response to their queries, making it an effective way to provide information and engage with your audience.
To optimise multimedia content, make sure that your images and videos are optimised for search engines. Use descriptive file names and alt tags, and ensure that your videos are optimised for mobile devices.
Voice search is the future of digital marketing and businesses that fail to optimise their content for voice search risk being left behind. By focusing on conversational keywords, optimizing for featured snippets, making your content mobile-friendly, using structured data, optimising for local search, using natural language, considering user intent, and using multimedia content, you can improve your chances of ranking well in voice search results and reaching your target audience.
As voice search continues to grow in popularity, it’s essential that businesses adapt their digital marketing strategies to meet the changing needs of their audience. By following these tips, you can ensure that your content is optimised for voice search and that your business remains competitive in the years to come.
Who is Stuart Shaw?
Stuart heads up the Search and Strategy teams at Zazzle Media. Always hungry for knowledge and consistently striving for perfectionism, Stuart Shaw is a human database but with a partition specifically for useless facts and Dad jokes.
Stuart Shaw holds a blended background in marketing and keeps his eyes firmly on the horizon with regards to new tech and upcoming potential search trends.