SEO for Voice Search

SEO for voice search graphic

I’ve got two boys, ages 3 and 5. They’ve got 5 cousins, ages 9 and under. When they all get together things get kind of wild, and loud. Recently, 6 of the 7 were together at our house and it suddenly got quiet. As a parent, you immediately notice lulls in decibel levels and go on high-alert. What was going on?

I go in to investigate and my 5-year-old has hijacked my phone and in the middle of a circle of giggles is asking Siri “What does Peppa Pig’s bottom look like?”

Wow. Proud dad moment, right? Not so much. There’s obviously some things we need to talk about at home. I’m sharing this story with you though, because it reinforced a digital marketing trend that is growing in importance – Voice Search.

One of the latest trends in the digital marketing world is SEO for Voice Search. It’s not really a trend that’s coming. It’s here and will only continue to grow. As marketers, we need to embrace it and start optimizing our websites and content for voice inquiries. They’re different than inquiries made from a keyboard.

Searches made by voice are more conversational and specific. We ask Siri things like “Where can I find the best price on a camo hunting jacket?” or “What’s the best way to plant a food plot?” or “How do I keep my 5-year-old from Googling inappropriate pictures of cartoon pigs?” Maybe that last one is just me.

On a serious note, we do need to start thinking this way when we think about SEO. Mobile searches are surpassing 50% of total searches. Today, 20% of mobile searches are voice searches. It’s expected that 50% of total searches will be voice searches by 2020.

What can we do now to start optimizing our websites for Voice Search?

There are several things you can implement now as the Voice Search trend takes hold and as it continues to grow. We’ve outlined a few quick Voice Search SEO Tips below that can get you started.

1. Think “conversationally” when developing content.

Voice Searches are often questions. They’re straight-forward questions asking specifically what we want to know. Think about what questions potential customers of yours might have and answer them in a conversational tone on your website. A FAQ section can be a great place to start answering common potential Voice Search inquiries to improve your Voice Search rankings.

2. Extend keywords.

Keywords have been an important part of SEO for a long time and they aren’t going anywhere. However, what we can do now is start testing slightly longer keyword phrases that are likely to be used in a Voice Search inquiry. For instance, instead of just looking at the keyword “hunting blind,” you can extend that to “most durable hunting blind” or “best value hunting blind.”

3. Maintain the Mobile-First Mentality.

Mobile is only going to continue to grow. A good mobile score on Google will help you appear in the results of more Voice Search inquiries. Almost half of your visitors will leave a page if it doesn’t load on their mobile device within three seconds. Google looks at how mobile-friendly your site is and your site speed and displays search results accordingly.

4. Use Voice Search.

I certainly would not suggest anyone ask Siri “What does Peppa Pig’s bottom look like?” However, utilizing a form of voice recognition technology for search can help you gain a better understanding of how it works and can spark ideas for how you can potentially improve your Voice Search SEO in content you create and keyword phrases you target.

Starting to think about optimizing your website and content for Voice Search now will pay dividends for you in the coming years. Implementing Voice Search SEO strategies now can put your business in a great position to excel and can give you a big advantage over your competition.