More and more people are using voice search to find products and services online. It is not some passing fad BY ANY MEANS. In fact, it is becoming the norm: Primarily with the surge of people using their mobiles phones more and more – talking is simply so much easier than writing!
Research by ‘Voice Labs’ revealed that thirty-three million ‘voice-first’ devices are distributed throughout the world. In 2017 voice searches ranked third. Sundar Pichai (Google SEO) also stated that 20% of Google searches are voice searches. With the use of digital assistants on the rise optimising for voice search is becoming more important than ever. Here are four simple ways to get the ball rolling.
Plan #1: Use well thought-out data
Content that is written specifically for your audience is the place to start. But this is not all the search engines look for to rank your position. The Meta data added to the source of your page needs to be well thought out, including information about what your website offers and how to contact you. While users do not see this, search engines do, and it can give you the edge over competitors. How can this help with voice search? When users search for local services they often want contact info (like telephone numbers and address). Having main data like this in the meta description will put your site up the scale…. before the content even comes into play. Submitting a comprehensive sitemap to Google and ensuring your robots.txt is not blocking access to such data is also a must.
Plan #2: Make the most of Google’s My Business listings
The statistics show that voice searches are often looking for local businesses. Adding your business address and contact info into your website footer is a quick and easy way to ensure local customers find you. Why the footer? Because this is where the majority of people expect to find it! So why is Google My Business listings important? Let’s say someone is looking for pizza delivery in Madrid.
If your website is optimised for local searches you have a good chance of getting a high rank for this search. This particular company has an optimised NAP listing and incorporates its core message in its meta and content to encourage high ranking voice search results. Ensuring your contact details are up to date is essential as is choosing the most appropriate categories for your business.
Plan #3: Be mobile-friendly
Most voice searches come from mobile devices. It makes sense therefore that your site needs to be mobile friendly. Use Google speed or Mobile-Friendly Test Tool to test your site. If the results are bad take note of the recommendations and get your website the green light. Speed is important because people are impatient. Webpagetest.org is another good tool to use.
Plan #4: Create Q & A Blog Using Customers most common questions.
People tend to use different words when searching online, compared to when they speak using voice search. For example, online they might say “pizza restaurant near me”. However, on a voice search they would probably say “where’s a pizza restaurant near me?” A lot of websites have FAQ pages. However, a blog based on the questions your customers really ask, paying attention to exactly how they ask them, will optimise your content better.