In recent years, the use of voice search has grown and as a result many changes in conducting online searches happened. Currently, 40% of adults use voice search once a day, and this percentage is expected to rise. By 2020, it’s estimated that 50% of searches will be done using voice and 30% of the searches will happen without using a screen. This begs the question: how will voice search change SEO tactics?
Many people make voice searches using their smartphones, and these searches are usually local-based. In fact, according to Search Engine Watch, mobile voice-based searches are three times more likely to be local-based than text-based searches. Furthermore, since using voice to make searches enables one to say around 150 words in a minute, people tend to be conversational, which leads to longer searches of more than 10 words.
Considering that, businesses need to optimize their sites for local search by first understanding what people usually search for and what their searching patterns are. For instance, according to one of SEO Tribunal’s blog posts, 52% of people use it to search for deals, sales, and promos while they multitask, especially when driving. And, since 18% of these local searches can lead to a purchase within a day, companies need to ensure that their location information is up to date and clearly visible.
Businesses also need to use conversational and long-tail keywords that are in question form in order to satisfy the smart speaker users. Not only should the content be conversational and natural, but also concise and straightforward. Google prefers short query answers to voice search which are around 29 words long.
The fact that Google now relies on semantics and a wider relevance of users’ queries to find relevant results means that companies need to think critically about how their target market will talk about their businesses and products while voice searching and tailor their content to those findings. This is only one way that voice search can change SEO practices.
Since people frequently use smartphones for voice search with 88% of “near me” being done on these devices, optimizing for mobile devices is a must. Otherwise, a company website will not appear in mobile searches and 34% of local customers who use it to find out where businesses are located won’t visit its store.
To learn more about voice search, check out the infographic below:
To learn more about benefits of SEO, check out our 5 Incredible Benefits of SEO For Your Business Strategy article.
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