8 Ways to Optimize for Voice Search (Voice SEO)
Posted on 11/12/2019 at 01:18 PM
As early as 2016, we predicted that voice search would become a key component of SEO and eventually dominate the SEO strategy. The verdict is in, voice search reigns supreme in 2019 and the trend continues to grow!
“By 2020, 30% of all website sessions will be conducted without a screen”- Forbes.com
Think about it. Which would you rather do, type a question or simply speak your question to Google Voice, Alexa, Cortana, Siri, Amazon Echo (or the Echo Dot), or Google Home your question and listen for the answer?
If you said, “Simply speak your question”, you’re not alone. In fact, according to a PWC survey, 71% of those surveyed would rather use their voice assistant to search for something rather than physically typing to search for something online. The same survey noted that 58% would rather use the voice assistant to text a friend than physically type their message and that 90% found it easier to search for something online with voice than speaking with a human or texting!
What does the Rise of Voice Search mean for SEO?
Understanding overall Search Engine Optimization is key to getting your message discovered, but what does the rise of Voice Search mean for SEO? Fear not, friends! Our experts at Global Reach have done the research so you don’t have to! You may not be surprised to learn that many of the traditional ways of boosting your search rankings apply to Voice Search SEO, but we’re pretty sure a few of our tips are real eye-openers!
Here are 8 Ways to Boost your odds of being recommended first on Google Voice or any other Voice Assistant!
1.Optimize for Speed and Mobile
With 53% of all worldwide website traffic accessed via mobile and 57% of Voice Commands issued to a smartphone, it should be no surprise that the Google Assistant, Siri, and Echo all prefer websites that are responsive and mobile-friendly.
What if two websites have extremely similar content? Well, when you ask a quick question, you want a quick and accurate answer. The website that loads the fastest wins every time! Our studies have shown that if it takes more than 3 seconds for meaningful content to show up on your website, visitors will lose interest and bounce to another site!
That’s right, according to an article posted to TIME, humans now have a shorter attention span than a Goldfish. It’s best to grab that attention with an accurate answer quickly!
2.Secure Website (SSL Certificate)
Google wants to provide the best recommendation possible every time. To prove that your website is the best place to do this, you need to prove that your website is trustworthy. It doesn’t matter if you run a blog or a multi-million-dollar eCommerce website, an up-to-date SSL Certificate boosts SEO and can be the thing that puts your website ahead of your competitors!
3. Create and Maintain a F.A.Q. Page
Providing answers to questions is literally what search engines were created to do! A well written and maintained FAQ is a great way to answer questions that those searching to learn about your product or service are looking for! Also, in its quest to provide the most current and relevant information, Google prefers webpages with any kind of updated content, including FAQ.
4.SEO Optimized Long-Form Content
In a recent blog, we explained the many benefits of powerful copywriting. Blogs and other long-form posts are a great way to provide valuable content that is also organically keyword-heavy! Here are three key points to remember when considering what constitutes “long-form content”:
If a post is less than 300 words, Google will not archive it as a blog
Blogs and posts with up to 3,000 words consistently perform higher than those with more than 3,000 and less than 300
Our studies have found that a post with around 1,600 value-filled words or takes about 8 minutes to read hit the sweet-spot of long-form, SEO friendly content
5.SEO Optimized Short-Form Content
Now, we know what you’re thinking. “You just said I need long-form content! Which is it?”
The short answer: you need both. Quick, concise answers to brief questions or queries are exceptional examples of short-form content… you know, like an FAQ!
6.Short Sentences with Simple Words
Think about how you use your virtual assistant. Do you ask a long, drawn-out, wordy question? Not usually. People use voice to inquire with simple, concise questions. Answers in the same format make it easier for the AI to find what it’s looking for!
7. Be Active on Various Social Media
This is one of the best tips on this list, by far. You may be asking yourself how being active on social media can help with traffic to your website. When you post on social media you have the potential for that content to be shared and reshared. Viral content creates a huge pool of backlinks- back to your page of origin! This helps boost your SEO because Google thinks your content is more influential. The more sources of traffic, the better.
“Basically, more links back to your website content from different sources enhances your credibility and perceived expertise! Think of it as social proof for search engines!” -Steven Adelmund, Digital Marketing Consultant with Global Reach
8.Create and Post Valuable Content
Gone are the days where one could simply post a call to action and reasonably expect the audience to flock to buy or engage. Today’s savvy audience seeks value first. You must earn the right to ask for their business. The more valuable your content, the higher you’ll rank. The more consistent the output, the more likely you’ll get to the top and stay there! Marketing is no longer simply about promoting your product or service. It’s evolved. A strategy that focuses on value-first content is what draws an audience in and builds your brand equity.
Quite simply, social media continues to allow for the regular release of strategically created quality content on a scale unlike anything the world has ever seen, for free!
We hope our expertise has helped you to better understand SEO overall, and how to make the best of the Voice Search wave of the future! Understanding the trends of SEO can mean the difference between becoming Google’s first recommendation or your voice search assistant’s last resort. It’s like the old saying goes…
“Where is the best place to find a body? The second page of Google.”
Creating valuable content is one thing. Understanding the strategy and analytics behind what to do with it is another! Hiring a full-time copywriter is a good start but having a team of fully experienced digital marketing experts can offer you a wide variety of cutting-edge expertise at a fraction of the cost of hiring or promoting an internal staff member. It's like having a whole digital marketing department at your disposal! If you find yourself struggling with your digital strategy, know that help is available!
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