ComScore recently estimated that 50% of all searches will be voice searches by 2020. As voice search continues to expand, brands will be faced with a genuine obstacle that affects many areas of search engine optimization. How should brands and agencies adapt their process to accommodate the changes precipitated by voice search?
In this episode of The Marketing Remix, “Voice Search: How to Adapt & Optimize Your Brand,” John Faris, VP of Cross Channel Marketing, and Ross Briggs, Manager of SEO, join Reid Carr, CEO of Red Door Interactive, to explore how voice search changes the game, how it pivots from what we’ve thought of search so far, and how brands can optimize their strategy for it.
For more details about what was discussed in the episode “Voice Search: How to Adapt & Optimize Your Brand” continue reading below.
How does voice search change a brand’s approach to keywords?
For some time in SEO, we’ve been in the mindset of optimizing for topics as opposed to specific keywords. It’s easy to believe change is unnecessary when we think of simply switching from a keyboard input to a voice. However, there will be a distinct change in the way voice search affects keywords and affects users' concepts of what it means to do a search.
Queries will become more conversational and consumers are becoming more confident in search tools like Google, that are able to understand their queries more accurately than ever before. They are no longer concerned with short searches or simply entering keywords because of new contextual results that have continued to occur as these tools become optimized.
How does the average user utilize voice search? What types of searches are they performing?
Users have been utilizing voice search without necessarily realizing they’re performing a ‘search’. It is changing the way things are happening on the users’ side. Voice search continues to become popular through Google Home, Amazon Echo and more. Amazon is very ecommerce focused, where a phone with voice support and a screen will share text outputs. In the home, we see a focus on connectivity and skills focused on interactivity with the tools.
How might brands (or clients) evolve their SEO approach to accommodate voice search?
As marketers, we need to understand that searches will continue to grow toward informal variations of typing and talking and will become topic focused as opposed to keyword focused.
Conversational queries took hold around 2013 and boiled searches down to intent. In order to optimize your approach to voice search, the focus needs to be on the intent of queries as opposed to the keywords themselves. Focusing on content that answers the user’s intent behind the query is the key to succeeding with voice search and search in general.
The other thing is “what are the questions that people are asking” and how can we answer these or meet the needs of the user regarding what they truly care about. These answers can be found in customer service logs, FAQs, social media messages and comments, and reviews.
A “voice search” role or team does not need to be developed to accomplish this. It very naturally fits as an extension of SEO and technology in the form of voice assistants. Voice search simply needs to be championed across all efforts, especially on-site content, apps, and all other platforms where brands want to be found. As the world of voice assistance and voice search continue to grow, we will keep an eye on it as it grows (and so should you).
Further Reading on the Topic:
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