February 16, 2023

The Impact of Voice Search on SEO

“Hey, Google,” “Hey, Alexa,” and “Hey, Siri” are phrases we hear more and more in everyday life. According to some estimates, there’s even a good chance (about a 43% chance) that you’ve said one of these phrases recently. As smartphones have become ever more prevalent in society, voice search continues to grow. Let’s examine how the impact of voice search is on SEO and what you should know about voice search optimization. 

How Do People Use Voice Search?

Before we can delve into the effects of voice search on SEO, we need to examine how voice search works. Voice search differs from traditional text search in a few key ways. 

  • Users search using the “wh” questions, who, what, when, where, and how
  • Users typically speak in complete sentences
  • Voice searches tend to be very specific to their actual needs
  • Voice search users tend to be more ready to commit vs. traditional search users

For example, a bride-to-be on her computer may search for “wedding dress” or “sexy wedding dress” when looking for ideas for her dress. However, if she’s using voice search, she’s more likely to ask questions like, 

  • Where’s the closest bridal shop? 
  • How do I get to David’s Bridal?

How Do Smart Devices Return a Voice Search?

Devices that use voice search typically use their proprietary software and search engine. For example, Apple devices will use Siri and Safari, while Amazon devices will use Alexa. Most Android devices rely on Google search for their voice search queries. Whichever platform a device uses, however, the goal of the search engine remains the same: to keep the user on their platform. As a result, most voice searches result in a voice response from the device. In some cases, the result may include a prompt to open directions in the device’s primary mapping service (such as Google maps for Android devices). 

While in traditional, desktop-based web searching, it can be aggravating for search engines to keep a user on the search engine instead of directing them to your website, in the case of voice search, that can be ideal. Remember, voice searches tend to be ready to commit. This means that they don’t want (or need) to search your website for your business address (in the case of our shop example). If the voice search AI can instantly provide the user with the information they need to convert to a customer, the person is likelier to do that. 

What Voice Search Means for SEO

Taking all of this into account, what does voice search mean for SEO? While talking about long-tail keywords, it can be easy to over-focus on keyword placement and miss the bigger picture. Optimizing for voice search means considering two critical things for your website. First, you need to know where a page on your website is meant to place a consumer in your marketing funnel. Second, you must ensure that your website content is authoritative and relevant. These two considerations meant that,

  • Content on your website will answer the “why” questions that users typically ask in voice searches.
  • That your actionable pages will be the ones to show up in a voice search

This means that you may not need (or want) to optimize every page for voice search. It also means that the deeper into the funnel a page is meant to draw a consumer, the clearer the call-to-action should be. For example, a dentist’s office’s blog may not need to voice-optimize a blog post about tooth-brushing tips. Someone looking for that kind of advice may not consider themselves in immediate need for a dentist. However, a blog about taking care of a broken tooth should have a clear call-to-action to help bring a voice searcher from their broken tooth query to your office. 

The Power of Partnerships

One additional consideration for voice search optimization involves partnerships. Voice search platforms partner with sites like Yelp and Kayak to help provide actionable results for searches. Therefore, it’s important to ensure that your business is listed with these kinds of sites, depending on your specific industry. This includes Google business to help ensure you are more likely to capture Android voice searches. These partnerships and listings will make it more likely that your business, services, and products will appear on relevant voice searches. 

Are You Ready to Bring Your Digital Marketing to the Next Level?

Let Curis Digital help you prepare for voice searches in your area. Contact us today to learn more about our digital marketing strategies for home care agencies.