As we continue to move towards a completely hands-free digital world, the way in which we choose to find, search for, or inquire about information using our digital devices, is changing. By the time next year rolls around, almost “30% of website sessions will be conducted without a screen” according to Forbes, as voice-only search becomes the new norm. This will drastically impact current SEO techniques, as voice search and automation will change how content is written, will impact ongoing SEO efforts, and it will narrow down target markets.
According to Marketing Tech News, about 22% of voice search users are engaging with voice search to find local businesses near them using the “near me” search feature. This allows you to simply use your smartphone’s GPS, voice search “____ near me” and watch as the results pop up. You can search anything from fast food restaurants to specific stores to local chains. This provides ample opportunities for smaller businesses who would likely have little to no chance to appear on the first page of Google. How? Smaller businesses can drive awareness to their business by using comparison sites and local site directories to make their presence known without spending large amounts of their budget on traditional SEO techniques to rank on the first page of Google.
The content that is created for businesses will need to be optimized for customers and not search engines. When customers use voice search to find information, they will be using everyday language and slang rather than marketing jargon and as such, the content needs to reflect how your customers talk about your business. Otherwise, they will not be able to find you.
When we talk about SEO, the topic often revolves around keywords, but there are also specific patterns to searches that occur. Google is working to deliver search results based on what someone is looking for and not just on the keyword. This is called semantic search and is becoming more important as voice search becomes normalized. A good example of a semantic search, where Google understands you, is when you are looking up movies in a specific city. You would say, “movies in New York (or whatever city), and Google likely knows that you want movies and times within that city, not movies about that city. Semantic search is critical going forward as people are going to use more conversational language in the searches they use and brands and businesses need to account for this.
Getting the most out of your content is critical in generating engagement, interest, and revenue while minimizing costs. One way of doing this is by automating parts of the content creation process, using machines to generate the content supply and then using the human touch to ensure the content is relevant for its intended use. Another part of this would be using machines to translate content or find the content in the user’s own language when they access your website or blog. In automating part of this process, you can ensure that the customer is always receiving tailored content.
To put this simply, if your website looks wonky or doesn’t load quickly on mobile devices, you will lose out on customers and your rankings will plummet as a result. Having a mobile website is a must, especially with voice searches being predominantly done on mobile.
While automation, voice, and artificial intelligence have already begun to drastically impact SEO, it is safe to say that as these technologies develop, more changes will come our way.
Our Digital Marketing Team can optimize your website and your content to make way for voice search. We can also help you gain and increase the visibility on search engines. For more information, Feel Free to Contact Us now.