There are more and more users that connect to the internet via mobile and use voice interfaces for their searches. These searches mostly refer to local businesses, entertainment and general information. This is why it’s important for companies to also optimize their websites for voice search. In the following article, we’ll talk about voice search and we’ll then look at what the best practice is within the SEO strategy for voice search.
What a Voice Search is
Voice search presents itself as an evolution in research, through which many user obtain answers in a faster and smoother fashion.
It greatly helps a user who can’t or doesn’t know how to navigate and is also one of those actions that a person does simultaneously with other actions.
The structure of a voice search query differs slightly to text search, as in most cases it’s a question, and is longer compared to text search. It usually starts with, “what, how, who, when and why”.
Here’s an example: if a text search query reads as follows: “best pizzerias in Naples”, the voice search query could be: “Siri, what are the best pizzerias in Naples?
What voice interfaces are and how they interact with users
Before delving into the voice search SEO strategy, it’s vital to understand how vocal interfaces are structured and how they interact with users. Yvonne Bindi answers this question for us in his book, “Language Design – Guide to the usibility of words for professionals in communication” – Apogeo.
The author provides one of her interactions with Ok Google, as an example of the functions vocal interfaces serve:
Author: “Who is Lucio Dalla?”
Ok Google: “Lucio Dalla was an Italian musician, singer/song writer and actor.”
Author: “Where was he from?”
Ok Google: “He was from Bologna.”
In this instance, Ok Google is clearly capable of maintaining a conversation and contextualizing the question. When the author asks, Where was he from?”, Ok Google remembers the first question, therefore the context, along with being able to connect it with Lucio Dalla, even if it isn’t present in the sentence.
” People use #smartphone while doing other things. #Voicesearch changed our lives and it’s gonna to change our #websites too. Tweet
The planning of vocal interfaces allows for quite a fluid dialogue, almost natural. In fact, they can:
- maintain a conversation;
- disambiguate the user’s request;
- be proactive in helping the user whenever there is doubt about the response;
- remember the context of the question.
Let’s now look at how this structural distinction, between the query I talked to you about previously and this new interface, affects SEO optimization.
In what way can we optimize our website for Voice Search?
Attention to content is crucial in order to optimize websites for voice search: a well-organized piece of content, following the logic of spoken language, therefore simple and natural, is the basis of a good SEO strategy.
Alongside content, you must also aim for specific SEO techniques that are reconsidered in key voice search.
Let’s see what they are, in detail:
How to optimize structured data for Voice Search
In accordance with a certain voice query, the search engine has a proactive approach, or suggests certain answers, collecting data from a website that is semantically marked with the right attributes. These markers are boosted by maps and local databases.
The use of structured data within the pages of your site contributes to its indexing. Thanks to this, the search engine is able to understand what the content of the page is and has less difficulty finding the answer to the query put forth by the user.
Long tail keywords for Voice Search
We previously looked at the difference between a textual query and one made via voice search.
A voice query presents itself as a sentence or phrase with a full meaning, a question, no longer characterized by basic keywords. In fact, many highlight the importance of considering the long tail of keywords.
Essentially, what becomes fundamental is the construction of content, not only keeping in mind the main keywords, but also considering the text as a completing part of a dialogue.
As we said before, vocal interfaces are designed to maintain a conversation, hence they look for answers that help them achieve this.
Based on a particular query, the search engine intercepts a certain informative piece of content that provides an answer to the user’s request, in a specific way.
The content collected by the search engine is viewed as first result in the webpage and represents the precise answer to the question asked by the user.
The characteristics that allow the search engine to select a particular content are: prestige, simplicity and affinity to spoken language through the use of common words.
People who use smart phones are less inclined to read massive articles on a small screen. So, it’s crucial to organize the content of your site using paragraphs to divide the info.
Google searches for explanations for users that utilize smart phones and therefore requires simple answers to complex questions.
Partitioning paragraphs is an excellent solution, whereas bullet points, like long lists, don’t adapt well to voice search. If we think of the function of vocal interfaces, we notice that if they come into contact with lists that are too long, they only suggest the textual part of the content.
Voice Search Faq’s
The use of Faq’s is another element to not undervalue, as they are successful generators of organic traffic, even for voice search. Down to their nature, or simple and unique responses, they are the of forms content that mostly respond to the query of a voice search.
In order to build Faq’s that respond precisely to queries made by users, you can use SEO tools such as Answer the Question, through which you can identify all the questions users ask by inserting a certain keyword.
Why is it important to optimize sites for Voice Search?
ComScore predicted that voice search will represent 50% of total searches by 2020. This means users will be ever more connected with smartphones and will use voice search more and more to find shops, restaurants, gyms, pubs/bars, nightclubs, hotels and general information.
According to the study performer by Benu Aggarval at the Search Marketing Expo, (Optimizing content for voice search and virtual assistants), 50% of searches are no longer carried out via computer; 82% of researches are actually carried out via mobile devices to look for local business. Finally 50% of users visits the store within 24 hours of searching, 18% of online searches lead to a purchase.
It’s clear: businesses will consider more and more crucial optimizing their websites. That actually means being found when users look for a service or a products online.
Do you need help in optimizing your website?