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How to Optimize your Business Site for Voice Search the Painless Way

June 29, 2017
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How does it feel talking to your phone when you need something? A little weird, isn’t it? Well, it might be so for you but recent research indicates that there is a steady increase in the number of people using voice searches. Even more interesting, most of the people who ask search engine questions end up buying the goods or using the services they requested for. For businesses that have always overlooked this target, it is time to think otherwise.

Are these enough reasons to invest in voice search? Why else would you optimise your site for voice search? Well, a few answers will do.

  • 20% of all Google mobile searches are voice searches. Furthermore, most people doing this are trying it out as a new thing. It can only mean the market is growing.
  • Voice searches are action-based. Many people opting for voice searches end up doing what they asked. Voice search is action-focused, making it a genuine source of organic traffic that is most likely to lead to conversion.
  • Search engines are lobbying for it; consider Siri from Apple, Cortana from Microsoft and Alexa from Amazon. Ideally, major players in the tech industry are pushing for it. The question is; why shouldn’t you?

Typically, both conversational searches and voice searches are carried out on mobile devices. Instead of typing keywords, people now opt to talk to their phones when they need something. In the era we are living in, an effective SEO strategy must undoubtedly incorporate optimisation of your website for voice search. Is there any easy way of going about it? Of course, there is. Let us walk through them.

Focus on Long-Tail Keywords (spoken)

First, it is important to appreciate the fact that people carry out their searches differently when talking and when typing. Most typed searches do not make sense. People simply type relevant keywords and phrases, which might not necessarily make sense as sentences. This is understandable because people believe that typing takes more time so they typically abbreviate their searches.

Take for instance, someone looking for recipes of cooking pasta without heat. Someone typing might simply key in’ cooking pasta, no heat.’ If the same person was to use voice search, you will probably expect a comprehensible question like; how can I cook pasta without heat? It doesn’t sound normal for someone to shout loudly the typed version. Every businessperson must be able to notice such differences and make necessary adjustments.

The kind of platform targeted also plays an essential role modifying the keywords used. Different voice command tricks apply for different platforms. Take Siri and Cortana for instance. Each application comes with its own intricacies. That means you will have your set of keywords carefully chosen when dealing with each platform. While doing this, you need to take into consideration several critical aspects;

  • There is a unique voice command trick for each system
  • People prefer complete questions as opposed to phrases when conducting voice searches
  • There might be differences in voice search keywords

One simply way of achieving a long list of suitable keywords is by asking yourself several questions. It might prove challenging or crazy when starting but it is guaranteed to bring satisfactory outcomes when used in searching for appropriate long-tail keywords.

Capitalise on local searches

One critical observation is that most voice searches are locally driven. Most people use voice searches when they need services or products around them. As noted earlier, such searches have high conversion rates. Businesses that are able to target and capture local search terms will find it easy tapping into this market. The keyword for these searches must therefore have location tags. Which questions are people more likely to have while on the road?

You need to consider your business service or products. Which questions are people more likely to ask about them? For an SEO site like http://www.gobimm.com/, you might also want to check web analytics to find the search terms your site is mostly associated with. Another brilliant idea is that of checking Google trends to find out popular searches within the local industry. At the end of the day, you should be able to have a satisfactory list containing relevant local search terms.

Invest in Responsive Website

Nearly all the voice searches occur through phones. It will be difficult ranking for voice searches if your website is not responsive. In order to capture this target audience, you must make appropriate changes within your site to ensure it is mobile-friendly. Your users need to have a seamless experience navigating through your site when using smartphones, tablets and iPads. Besides guaranteeing a great user experience, it is worth noting that mobile has become a strong ranking factor in the recent past. For businesses that are able to adopt mobile-friendly web designs, there is a brighter future as far as voice search is concerned.

How do you know your website is mobile friendly? You can simply take a mobile friendly test, on Google. Fast loading websites is another way of conforming to web-responsiveness. You need to ensure this even if it means reducing the mobile pages to platforms with essentials. Whenever possible, avoid complicated web designs that might make it difficult getting to the main content of the site. It is also advisable to keep off big popups. You might also want to take advantage of Google’s AMP and other tools to ensure your mobile site is highly responsive and therefore suitable for voice search.

Conclusion

Voice search is a huge source of traffic for modern-day businesses. If your site isn’t optimised for voice searches yet, you are definitely missing something. Conforming to voice search optimisation techniques doesn’t have to be a complicated process. If you are keen on SEO best practices such as web responsiveness and long-tail keywords, you are already in. All you need to do is focus on local searches and optimise your website further. You will be good to go before you know it!

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