SEO for Voice Search in 2022
How often do people say ‘Hey, Siri’ or ‘Hey, Google’ in a day? The answer is a lot. Many people rely on these services to streamline their daily lives. Although a generally new aspect of search engine optimisation (SEO), it is important to know that almost one-third of online users globally use mobile voice search, making SEO something that is going beyond just mobile optimisation, now gearing towards mobile voice search optimisation in 2022 and beyond.
What is Voice Search?
Voice search is a voice recognition program that allows users to perform searches by speaking directly into a device These devices can be everything from smartphones, laptops, computers, and iPads, all the way to home assistant devices. Some of these home assistant devices include Apple’s Siri, Google Assistant, Amazon’s Alexa and Microsoft’s Cortana.
Users tend to utilize these voice search devices to handle their correspondences, find out where to have dinner, and even see what the weather is. They almost work like virtual assistants in everyone’s hands.
How Does Voice Search Affect SEO?
There is little difference between typing a query into Google and speaking a query to Google. The biggest difference is how things are worded.
Typed search: “Restaurants near me”
Voice Search: “What are some good restaurants near me?”
This means that traditional keyword-based SEO may not work in the same way, as the way we use language varies between typing and speaking. It’s not easy for these programs to register what we say and give us the appropriate response, but we can alter SEO to be more user friendly, and specifically be more voice search user friendly.
Voice Search SEO Updates for 2022
Claim Your ‘My Business’ Listing for Local SEO
If you have a brick-and-mortar business, that is a business with a storefront, you must claim and optimise your Google ‘My Business’ listing. This is a great way to provide Google with not just your business information and where it’s located, but also lets you advertise your business hours, phone number and website. If you keep this information up to date, anytime someone asks their voice search assistant ‘what’s a great hairdresser in Fitzroy?’ your name will come up. My Business is also the first step to optimising your local SEO, and this is important for all brick-and-mortar businesses.
Content also has to be optimised for voice search. We suggest paying attention to answering simple questions clearly and concisely and creating a webpage to answer a common question. It’s important here, even if you make long-form content to pose a question and answer it almost immediately. This could be “Why we are the best pasta in Melbourne?’ when the next few lines should be a concise response to this, and then you can elaborate further in the content that follows. This allows your headline to catch the voice search crawlers and you can elaborate after the listener wants to know more.
Focus on Conversational Keywords
If people use more natural speech to use voice search, it follows that long-tail keywords must be used to target these users. The way to do this effectively is to think of how people speak and try to make your keywords as conversational as possible. One way to do this is to document and record the types of questions your clients ask you over the phone, this might be ‘what time are you open on Friday?’ or ‘how much is x service.’ Once you have a list of phrases, you can start creating content around these conversational terms, this might be old school keyword research, but it works!
Understand How People Use Voice Search
If you’ve ever used a voice search assistant such as ‘OK Google’ or ‘Siri’, you’ve probably been guilty of joking around with these personal assistants. It is very common for people to interact with these technologies almost with a sense of playfulness, curiosity and sometimes even like they’re speaking to an old friend. An understanding of how people use voice search can help you optimise voice search on your website. We recommend injecting some humour into your website and engaging customers in a unique way. As a bonus, it will make your brand seem more human to those who visit your webpage.
Read User Guides
If you really want to utilize voice search to the best of your ability, it’s best to know how they work. This way you can optimise based on the specific voice search platform you want to use. The information in the guides might seem basic, but there are some hidden gems, such as websites that tell you a list of Cortana, Siri or Ok Google commands. You can then take these commands and optimise your content accordingly. Another great resource is Google’s Voice Search Quality Guidelines, these can inform any optimisations for Google.
Mobile optimisation Matters
After people ask their voice search assistant a query, they often immediately pick up their phones to see for themselves if the query is worth investigating. This is especially important for queries that ask questions that lead to storefronts or websites where the user needs to double-check or confirm what has been said, not necessarily for checking the weather.
This means that your website needs to be mobile friendly and easily navigable. If you can do this alongside having great conversational content and keywords, results will be seen sooner.
With each passing year, the increase in the number of people using voice search is increasing. The increase of this technology on consumer behaviour is also high, so digital marketers have to be ready to meet user expectations sooner rather than later.
That being said, digital marketing is constantly evolving and it’s not easy to keep on top of it. We’ve got you covered for 2022, but who knows what will happen next year or the year after? If you’re struggling to wrap your head around new SEO comings and goings, Perfect Link Building can help you stay on top of digital marketing with our team working around the clock to stay in the loop.