It all started back in 2011 when Apple launched it’s flagship mobile- iPhone 4S which had the most talked about feature- Siri. Since then this space was occupied with other competitors launching their own version of ‘Voice-Search’ – there were Google’s Voice, Microsoft’s Cortana, and Amazon’s Echo Alexis. Now voice and conversational search is poised for rapid growth and the first change is to be seen by the digital marketing industry.
A recent research conducted by Google in 2014, reported that 55% of teens and 41% of the adults in US are now using voice search more than once per day. Businesses need to be informed right in time before it’s too late about the impact of Voice search on digital marketing especially current SEO techniques, Content marketing and Social media marketing strategies.
Expected Outcomes of Voice Search In Future
#1. Voice Search is going to or already has caused a decrease in keyword search
As the keyword search is going to decrease there will be repercussions felt on sites optimized for keywords which will eventually see a decrease in traffic and engagement. The shift is from typing in keywords, long tail or short tail, to finding something by asking questions with a natural language. This goes beyond long tail keywords where marketers used combination of multiple search terms to narrow results on smaller niche audiences. Long tail keyword search was developed for the audience looking for a specific product or service online. But in Voice search people use their voices to ask questions in full sentences.
#2. Consumers ask questions of the internet as if it was a person
We all know that Voice Search uses natural language, but what we don’t know is that it has caused an increase in questions as part of search phrasing. The search engine watch reports the use of search queries starting with “who”, “what”, “where”, and “how” has increased by 61% year over year. This makes sense because many people are now using their voice asking their phones.
How Marketers can take Advantage of Voice Search
#1. Marketers need to adjust their content so that it appears as the best answer
This can be achieved by not thinking much about keyword stuffing and meta tags, but laying more focus on full sentence queries. Respond to more natural language questions with similar natural language answers- as you would answer in person. Voice search results emphasize on quality and try to put forth the best match answers, so you should think less as a marketer with heavy sales pitch messages and more like a publisher or journalist.
#2. Find out the most common questions asked by your target audience
You need to search more about industry, interests, and product forums. Search comments on ratings and industry appropriate review sites such as Yelp, Trip Advisor or even Amazon. Other places to search are questions and answers site such as Quora.com or your own Q&A page. You can survey frontline employees and salespersons at your company to know about the frequently asked questions by customers.
#3. Search these common questions using voice search and see the answers that currently showup
You can use any of the popular voice search engines Siri, Google Voice, Cortana etc. to see what is currently appearing at the top of search results. This will help you identify current competition and provide a knowhow to structure your own answers.
#4. Create website and social media content that answers those queries
Use simple and clear sentences to answer the “who”, “where”, “how”, and “what” type of questions through your content. Elaborate your answer to the query around the direct answers to fill out the information. Don’t forget that the same question can re-phrased in multiple ways like “ how do i fix?”, “ how do i stop?”, or “ who can fix?” Don’t forget to include answers to these questions in content.
#5. Consider local voice search
Considering the fact that your business has a local address, then you must add a new element to answer potential customer questions. People may ask certain queries like” Where can i get my iPhone charger?” Which closest cafe offers a free wi-fi?”. Just make sure that your local business is listed on Google Business and other geo-location social media sites like Yelp, Foursquare, and Facebook.