It’s no secret that the digital world is always changing. If you own a business, you understand the importance of keeping up with these changes as part of your marketing campaign. While voice search isn’t new, it’s definitely something that should have your attention. You’d have to be hiding under a rock somewhere not to notice the growing popularity of voice search in some devices. What does this mean for the world of marketing? Voice search is defined by Techopedia as a recognition technology that allows a user to perform a search by voice command. It is used through an app or service across many different devices. Mobile devices are obviously here to stay, and the convenience of speaking terms aloud is particularly beneficial when users don’t have ease of a traditional keyboard. These “virtual assistants” are used for practically every reason you can think of from the local weather and news headlines to traffic reports and directions.
Voice Search Popularity Surge
The initial idea of voice search as a useful application might have filled most users with skepticism. However, as the convenience of voice catches on, it’s becoming the preferred way to search among many. Over 60% of respondents in a recent survey prefer voice search because it’s fast and requires no typing, and 66% agree that voice commands make smartphone use easier. Still, voice search offers solutions for users in nearly every location.
While voice search in the home offers privacy and eliminates the potential of disturbing others, it’s not necessarily the most common location for increased use. After all, home searches offer convenience you don’t have in most other locations. However, smart speakers like Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Microsoft Cortana provide new reasons to use voice search. The popularity of these speakers is growing quickly with 26.2 percent of the U.S. adult population now owning one.
While a portion of the general public will always offer some disagreement with the use of voice search in public locations, resistance is diminishing. Use of voice search in the office has risen to 50%, and subway and bus usage have risen to 35%. Since 2017, the use of voice search has doubled in some public places like gyms and theaters.
As we all become more aware of the potential danger smartphones pose to everyone on the road, voice search provides a solution. A recent Uberall study shows 34% of voice search use taking place in vehicles and 48% of searchers are seeking business information. The reasons are obvious. Hands-free devices are safer behind the wheel, and many states are adopting laws to enforce them. No matter the location, voice search provides a way for users to gain information without becoming distracted from their current tasks. This lack of distraction can simply help users avoid a mess in the kitchen, or eliminate one more reason for a driver to take their eyes from the road. As more consumers begin to rely on voice search for different reasons, one thing is clear: Businesses must be prepared to keep up with the trend.
How is Voice Search Different?
If voice search is designed to take the place of a traditional search, is there any difference in the terms we use? Consider the difference in the way you speak and type. Whether we mean to be or not, humans are a vocal species. Differences in the words we use may be subtle, but they’re important enough to require your attention. When typing a query, searches rarely use extra words. Voice search queries, on the other hand, are more like talking to a person. While we’re aware there isn’t an actual person behind our virtual assistants, most people still use a more conversational tone with voice searches. This means searches are longer, more specific, and often include specific locations and brands.
How to Prepare Your Business for Voice Search
If your potential customers are talking to their phones like people, it’s important that your search terms aren’t lost in translation. Text search depends heavily on matching exact keywords to users. Voice search will likely require a broader approach. The key to preparing your business for the voice search generation is understanding the language.
Understanding How Voice Search Works
There is more to voice search than longer queries. If you were talking to a human assistant, you’d expect a certain amount of understanding. Consumers using voice search on a mobile device are now expecting the same understanding from their phones. Location matters more than ever as searchers increasingly use more search terms like “near me” or “here” in their search terms. Additionally, searchers are often seeking a single answer, making the stakes higher than ever for businesses with similar competitors in the area.
Increasing SEO Tactics for Voice Search
While exact keyword matches were often successful for the short terms used in text searches, long-tail keywords become more important for voice searches. SEO for voice search only intensifies the idea that content should be written for people instead of search engines. Mobile devices are popular in the world of voice search, and Google offers priority to mobile-friendly websites with clear navigation and easy to read content. To keep up with consumers looking for quality information in a shorter time frame, you need broader keywords, readable content, and a great user experience.
Using Conversational Language
If virtual assistants are expected to form responses like human assistants, your content has to provide a conversational tone. Instead of stringing a list of keywords together, you need to provide well-written content that reads like a conversation. Since users often ask direct questions when using voice search, Q&A content offers high rankings in voice searches. Additionally, since voice searches are often local, it’s crucial to have your local information up to date. Voice search isn’t a fad that will be gone tomorrow in favor of the next new thing. With the use of screen-less devices on the rise, voice search is sure to have a valuable spot in searches of the future. Vigor Seorchers is a full-service digital agency prepared to help you gain online exposure with a combination of quality techniques to optimize your search results. Fill out our free discovery form to see how we can match up with your business to help you optimize voice search to reach your modern marketing goals.