The voice recognition system is not new, though you may think so. In 1961, William C. Dersch, an IBM engineer came up with the first voice recognition system called ‘shoebox’. But, Shoebox in comparison to the currently available speech recognition devices such as Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, or Microsoft Cortana was limited in voice-recognition ability. And, therefore, it proved futile for an average customer to significantly impact the businesses.
Now, voice recognition or voice search differs from web search in the following ways.
- A voice search is primarily conversational in nature and composed of longer sentences.
- A voice search is based on clear cut questions and the closest answers to those questions.
As an example of voice search, if you ask Google Assistant — Okay, Google which restaurant is located near me? — it will track your location and tell you the names of all restaurants located close to you. But, if you ask a vague question such as — Hey, Google, pass on the message. Then, Google assistant asks you ‘what message?’ but once you tell it your message, it may dodge your question by saying — How can I help you?
That said it would be interesting to check how voice search queries have gone up in the last few years. A look at such statistics can help digital marketers incorporate ‘voice search technology’ into their digital marketing strategy and allow them to foresee massive organizational growth.
Let’s look at the market growth statistics.
- In 2019, the market witnessed Google selling more than 8m voice-based search home devices.
- While Amazon’s Echo registered a 10% market penetration in the U.S., Google’s Home could grab a market share of 4%, and Microsoft’s Cortana could acquire 2%.
- The voice-based smart speakers are expected to reach worth $30 billion by 2024.
Let’s also look at the voice-search statistics.
- At least 40% of adults use mobiles for voice search on a daily basis and 20% once monthly.
- Among the teenagers, at least 55% make use of voice search daily.
- 50% of all voice-searches will be enabled through the internet while 30% through smart devices by the end of 2020.
And, now the statistics that pertain to consumer behavior and which should interest all digital marketers.
Consumer Behavior Statistics
- At least 44% of owners who own voice search speakers order products through these devices, 72% of parents as consumers prefer to shop by using these voice-assistants.
- With Google’s Home supporting currently 13 languages, the messages can be delivered in the customer’s own language.
Besides the above, consumers’ experiences have been fantastic because of the fact that these smart devices sound human-like. One can also better manage emails, organize calendars, and shop. Google claims, the Assistant will be of help not just in the home environment but even outside of homes.
Before I talk about the web content optimization tips for a voice search, let’s understand why this change is compulsory.
Why It Makes Sense to Optimize Website Content for Voice Search Marketing?
In the traditional search engine web search, if optimization becomes essential to satisfy a search query, it’s essential for a voice search too.
But, there is one basic difference between the two and that is, there will be only one result when a question is asked in the form of voice. And, as a brand owner, you either appear as a result or not. So, it’s a tough competition out here, yet with 50% of voice-based searches being made currently, you can’t thrive without it. And, to appear as number one result, you need to optimize your website content.
Let’s have a look at how you can optimize your website content for voice search.
Get your Business Listed in the Local Business Listing
One of the great ways to have your brand’s word out is through a ‘Google My Business’ listing. All you need to do is add or claim your business by signing up for Google My Business and then optimize it. The content optimization would mean putting up the most accurate and relevant information about your business such as the type of industry you are in, your contact details, your hours of operation, etc.
In this way, you can help boost your brand’s visibility by showing up in Google’s voice search results once a relevant voice search is performed by customers.
Optimize your Content for Mobile Devices
Unless both your website design and website content aren’t optimized for mobile devices, they will not be viewable by customers when they are traveling and looking up their mobiles. The content must be in a format that can easily be scanned, enlarged, and read by viewers. You need to make sure there’s no ad or pop-up showing up when the content page opens up for viewing and reading.
On the whole, a mobile-friendly website design and content will help boost your SEO. If both are taken care of, there will be no issues of slow page loading speed. You can make use of ‘GTmetrix’ to determine the page loading speed.
Include Long-Tail Keywords and Keywords That Can Answer a Question
As explained earlier, the voice search is a kind of search where people would normally ask questions in a non-formal, natural, and conversational tone. So, as against a web search, the use of long-tail keywords becomes absolutely pertinent. You will need to try popular terms as keywords that are likely to be voice-searched by people. At the same time, these keywords must be question-based. For example, in sentences like “Why Should I Choose LED Bulb?” or “How to Install The Messenger on Mobile?” the keywords are How and Why. Tools such as ‘Buzzsumo’s Question Analyzer’ and ‘Answer the Public’ can be of great help when trying to find voice search keywords.
The choice of keywords will thus help you to rank higher in voice-based search engine results.
Create Web Content Pages That can Answer FAQs
Google, according to findings, can answer a voice search query in the maximum limit of 29-30 words and that is why it’s important that you optimize your content pages in such a way that it accurately answers a question but not exceed this word limit. Obviously, you can’t write a blog post in 30 words and so creating a separate FAQ page would be perfect. Perform a voice search on Google’s Home and the Google Assistant will pull out answers that have a maximum of 30 words coming out of a website’s FAQ pages.
If the FAQ pages created have high-performing keywords, your brand can achieve top ranks in voice-based SERPs.
Optimize your Website Content for Featured Snippets in Google
Knowing the fact that about 40% of voice searches come from featured snippets can let your brand achieve the top ranks in Google. These snippets are in the format that has concise and clear-cut answers to a voice-based search query. In order to optimize your content for featured snippets, all you will have to do is have a heading/sub-heading in the question-format, smart and appealing visuals, and answer to the question in not more than 30-40 words. If you have written a blog post that can answer many questions similar in nature, your content will be picked up by Google and shown as a featured snippet in voice-based search results.
One of the tools that allow you to track and monitor your featured snippets is ‘SEMRush’.
Write Content That is Simple to Understand
Since your content is for an audience who will do a voice search, it’s important that your content is simple to have understood even by a student of the high school. You can make use of ‘The Hemingway App’ to check if the content you have created has a high readability level.
The search engine algorithms keep changing with the times and so does the consumption pattern of customers. To become relevant in the current eCommerce landscape and to stay ahead of your competitors, you must optimize your website content from a voice-based search standpoint.
If you want to create a voice-based content for your website, do let us know.