Being heard: how to optimise your content for voice search

Being heard: how to optimise your content for voice search

If you unwrapped a voice-activated smart speaker – like an Amazon Echo, Google Home or Apple HomePod – at Christmas, many other people will be able to relate. While such devices were not responsible for initially sparking voice search’s rise, they have certainly fuelled it in recent years.

So ubiquitous has voice search become that, according to an estimate cited by Digital Information World, half of all searches will be by voice in 2020. How can you tweak your content accordingly?

Voice queries tend to be conversational

If you lived in Durham and fancied some pizza, your search phrase would probably be along the lines of “pizza shop Durham”, provided you were typing that term into Google’s search field. However, when issuing a query vocally to a smart speaker or another device, the query could be more natural.

Therefore, you might ask: “Which is the best pizza shop in Durham?” For this reason, to catch the interest of aural searchers, sticking to incorporating fragmented keywords might not suffice.

How a question phrase starts signals the degree of intent

Returning to the previous example, a “which” question – like a “what” or “who” query – indicates that the user is simply researching. However, they would be closer to making a purchase if they ask a “when” question, like “When is [pizza shop’s name] open?”

They would be nearer still when asking a “where” question. They could be asking: “Where exactly is [pizza shop’s name] in Durham?” You can, therefore, benefit from optimising for such queries.

Voice searches are popular for finding local content

According to the Internet Trends Report 2016, 22% of people utilise voice search for sourcing local information, as Neil Patel reports. Indeed, when you are on the go with your mobile phone at close hand, it makes sense to vocalise, rather than type, in order to save time.

Given this statistic and the fact that 50% of local mobile searches made by a consumer prompt them to visit a store the same day, you need to be careful with your choices of keywords.

Place locally relevant keywords in the right places

How do people describe the area where your company is based? Include suitable descriptive phrases in your content. With the phrase “near me” featuring often in search queries, you should also insert that in your site’s title tags, internal links, anchor text and meta description.

Another good idea is mentioning local institutions relevant to your firm; for example, a store stocking art supplies could benefit from mentioning a popular art gallery sited nearby.

Make a range of crucial information easy for people to find

Your target customers will want to quickly find information like your company’s opening hours, contact details and physical address. Hence, place these details in your site’s footer as well as your company’s Google My Business listing.

You could display those details on your social media pages, too – and we can help you to even further bolster your efforts in social media marketing.

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