In 2021, voice search technology is here to stay. Businesses who aren’t considering voice search in their SEO strategy are likely to be losing out on clients and conversions.
Voice search refers to the process of devices using artificial intelligence to search the web based on speech. In other words, instead of typing in a search query, the user speaks it out loud.
Voice search is included as an inbuilt feature on most smartphones released in recent years, and certain device-connected apps, such as Google Home and Amazon Echo, bring voice search to the entirety of the home.
Related: A Guide to Optimizing your Website for Voice Search
The search engine used for voice search depends on the device, app, or virtual assistant being used. The most popular voice search technologies operate using three main search engines.
Google Home and Google Assistant, in addition to voice searching technologies included on Android smartphones, use Google to complete voice search queries.
Amazon Echo (Alexa) does not use major competitor Google’s search engine, but instead indexes the internet for results using Bing. Microsoft Cortana also uses Bing.
Siri, the virtual assistant associated with iOS and other Apple products, uses Safari for voice search queries.
Due to the use of different search engines by different devices, you can ask Alexa, Siri, and Google the same question and come up with three different answers. Most SEO efforts focus on optimizing results for Google, but it is important to consider rankings in other search engines if you hope to harness voice search to your advantage.
Google is undeniably the most advanced search engine, and consistently shows itself to be a user favorite, with 86.6% of global search engine traffic occurring through Google. With at least 40 million people in the United States alone using Amazon Echo and almost 200 million Americans using iPhones, it is important to optimize your website and content for Bing and Safari, too.
The user base for voice search technology is continuously growing. Here are some statistics to demonstrate the prevalence of voice search in 2021.
You might not hear about voice search technology in the news as much as in previous years, but that’s because it has become a normal part of everyday life and is here to stay.
A survey conducted by NPR in the spring quarter of 2020 provides valuable insight into what voice search is used for. Voice search users harness the technology to complete a variety of queries, which vary from device to device.
Smart speaker (such as Google Mini or Amazon Echo) users were asked if they performed different types of search queries in a typical week.
Smartphone users used voice search for the same tasks at different rates:
Aside from considering more search engines than just Google, voice search requires some tweaks or additions to your SEO strategy to reap the full benefits.
Another reason why it is so essential to optimize your business’ online presence for voice search is because customers who use voice search are more likely to call you. In fact, 28% of consumers report that their next step, after voice searching, is to call the business they searched for.
It is well established that phone calls are correlated with conversion, converting as many as fifteen times as often as web leads.
The way that people search out loud is different from the search queries they type into a search engine. Most importantly, voice searches tend to be phrased as questions.
For example, someone might type “personal injury attorney near me” into Google, but they are more likely to ask “Who is the best personal injury attorney near me?” out loud. While this is a subtle difference, optimizing your content for a more conversational style of searching will improve your voice search outcomes.
The top three words in voice search queries are “how,” “what,” and “best.” This is important to keep in mind when adapting your website copy for voice search.
People tend to ask their voice assistants for information specific to their local area, making it even more important to optimize your website and content for localized results. Since local searches account for almost half of all web searches anyways, this should already be a part of your SEO strategy. Make sure you are:
If you are looking for a Google voice search expert for your business who can help your local SEO efforts, contact KISS PR local SEO expert.