VOICE SEARCH SEO: HOW TO OPTIMIZE CONTENT FOR VOICE SEARCH?

VOICE SEARCH SEO: HOW TO OPTIMIZE CONTENT FOR VOICE SEARCH?

More than every second person has already used a digital language assistant

This was the result of a  current representative survey by Kantar TNS on behalf of the Federal Association of the Digital Economy (BVDW) eV The most popular among German online users are the Google Assistant , followed by Siri , Cortana and Amazon’s Alexa . Their users tend to be young and predominantly male. It is interesting in this context that it is also the younger age groups who have the most concerns about language assistants. They are particularly concerned with data misuse and surveillance by others. Virtual assistants are primarily used for quick access to information, for search engines and for navigation.

The market research company Comscore expects that by 2020 every second search query will be done by voice command. At the same time, more users mean that there will be more training data for the language assistants’ machine learning technology . As a result, the ability of devices to process natural language is improving. For this reason, it is high time to get to grips with the topic of SEO for voice search .

How is voice search different from traditional search?

Not all verbal search queries differ from the classic, text-based search – some differences can be identified. Compared to the text-based search, the search by voice command is more often carried out via the smartphone. In addition, searching by voice command  often has a local connection . Voice-driven searches are often longer, more complex, and more conversational. So e.g. B. whole search phrases or questions are used.

Which content is suitable for Voice Search SEO?

Two types of content are particularly relevant for voice search optimization: facts and information (e.g. “How tall is Angela Merkel?” ) and local content. For this content, Google uses results from the web or map search, or pulls the answers from featured snippets. As a website operator, you should therefore focus on optimizing the content for these types of search queries.

How do I optimize my content for Google’s voice search?

In a recent Central Office Hour hangout , Google’s webmaster John Mueller responded to a question about what is most important when optimizing your content for voice search:  “I think it’s very complicated. It’s very early to talk about this topic to talk about and there is still no silver bullet for every website.”  Still, Mueller gave some helpful voice search SEO tips, which we’ve summarized for you along with other recommendations.

Optimize content for mobile:

Voice search is mainly used on the go. Google has also announced that it will gradually introduce the Mobile First Index this year. It is therefore essential for you to optimize your content for mobile devices.

Our tip: Use Google’s mobile-friendly test to checkwhether your website is mobile-optimized. In addition to a responsive design, you should consider the following aspects:

  • Loading times: Your website shouldn’t take longer than three seconds to load all the content. Check your website’s loading time with Google’s Pagespeed Insights tool .
  • Thumb friendliness: Many users operate their smartphone primarily with their thumb or index finger. Buttons should be easily clickable, so they shouldn’t be too small or too close together.
  • Content “above the fold”: Make your content as clear, understandable and structured as possible. Especially the content “above the fold”, which is visible at first glance and without scrolling, should be appealing.

Use Structured Data:

Google tries to understand websites as best it can to figure out what kind of spoken searches match those pages. Help Google with this by making it clear what your page is about.

Our tip: Use structured data like Schema.org markups. This allows you to enrich your content with additional information and make it clear to search engines which pages answer specific search queries.

Digital language assistants answer simple search queries with content from the Knowledge Graph . For other questions, Google often uses featured snippets . Featured snippets are featured search results that include a short, summarized response from a website. They can be in different formats such as text, list, table or even video. They are displayed above the organic search results (zero position) and were specially developed for end devices that only have space for a few search results. Or even just one, such as B. the language assistants. Featured snippets are created automatically by Google and cannot be influenced directly, but their creation can be favored by certain measures, e.g. B. by using structured data.

Our tip: Check specifically for which search queries featured snippets are displayed and try to give better answers to get to position zero. Featured snippets usually result from “what” and “how” questions , so use tools like KWFinder and Keyword Explorer to find suitable keywords

Optimize content for local search:

Local optimization is essential for voice search. Therefore, make the local data available to the Virtual Assistant as correct, up-to-date and complete as possible. It is also particularly important that you use your local data such as address, telephone number and name as consistently as possible on the web.

Our tip: Make sure you use business listings like Google My Business so that your business can be found in relevant places for “near me” searches. Always keep your entry up to date.

Recognize user intent:

In order to be number one in voice search, you need to be able to anticipate the questions your users or customers will ask as precisely as possible. It is also important to understand the intention of the user with their request. If you know the questions and the intention, you should give answers to the questions that are as specific as possible.

Our tip: Use the Answer the Public tool to find out what questions users have about specific search terms.

Use Spoken Language:

Adapt your content to the language style of the spoken search queries and use the most natural tone possible. Texts should be written in such a way that they can easily be read aloud . Avoid tactics like keyword stuffing or text written just for search engines.

Our tip: ask your customer service which specific questions are frequently asked. Use this to create FAQ pages on which you can answer the most important questions precisely. These also increase the chance of being displayed in a featured snippet.

Use long-tail keywords:

Due to the longer, spoken search queries in voice search, you should optimize your content for long-tail keywords. These niche keywords usually contain multiple terms or entire keyword phrases that are strung together and are similar to spoken language. They also target a more specific audience than generic keywords.

How is voice search evolving?

In the future, not only the question and intention, but also the mood of the user will have more influence on the search results. In addition , the monetization of voice search will continue to gain in importance for companies . In addition, more and more content is becoming relevant for voice search: e.g. B. Podcasts, recipes and news. In this context, Google recently launched the ” Google Assistant Actions ” directory: It provides an overview of actions that are triggered by Google Assistant search commands and that are used to find content on certain websites. Site operators can view the “Actions” pages of their content, edit the information and set the findability of the content.

Conclusion

Voice search is still in its infancy. However, it will continue to develop significantly in the coming years. So try now to recognize the potential in the area that is relevant to you. Our voice search SEO tips can help, so start by optimizing your website for voice search. Here it is important to become aware of the relevance of featured snippets. Answer the questions of your customers and users as precisely as possible. Optimize your website for local and mobile search, and your content for voice search.

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