Although voice search technology has been around for a while and is not entirely new, the development of voice assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri has resulted in a recent technology revolution.
In this article, we discuss everything you need to know about voice search technology and why it is important for your business.
What is Voice Search?
Voice search is a speech recognition technology that enables users to search by speaking words out loud rather than typing them into a search bar. Typically, people will ask their devices, like smart speakers, to answer a question or to complete a task in a conversational tone.
Consumers can use voice technology to interact with the internet for various purposes. From a digital marketing perspective, voice technology opens up a new world of marketing channels, allowing you to reach your clients via different voice-enabled digital devices such as smartphones, voice assistants, smart televisions, and cars.
How Does Voice Search Technology Work?
Voice search technology uses automatic speech recognition (ASR) to convert voice signals into text. This voice recognition technology enables users to search on their smart devices using only their voices. The voice search technology will then convert their spoken words into text.
The search engine then treats the text as a regular search query and returns relevant search results.
Machine learning continues to improve over time to better understand natural human language and the user’s intent to produce the most relevant results.
Statistics and Demographics
In 2020, sales of smart speakers surpassed 150 million. Currently, 35% of the US population has a smart speaker, which is anticipated to climb to 75% by 2025.
Amazon, Google, and Apple dominate the smart speaker market. The most popular smart speaker models, listed in order of popularity, are as follows:
• Amazon’s Echo: 20.8%
• Google Nest: 8.1%
• Apple’s HomePod: 2%
• Others: 5.2%
Lastly, almost 50% of all searches are now conducted via voice search technology, with just over half of voice search users under 18.
Is Voice Marketing Important for Your Small Business?
So, why should voice search matter to your business? The answer is simple. As more people keep utilizing this voice technology, your business should consider integrating a voice marketing strategy to stay ahead.
In traditional digital marketing, users are generally presented with hundreds of results when asking a question through a search engine. However, when it comes to a smart speaker or voice assistant, they typically only yield a single result. This changes the game for digital marketers since they will have to compete more fiercely for the top spot and have less control over it.
Although users appreciate how simple it is to ask a question and get a quick response, this also means that more decision-making is transferred from the user to the AI. It’s unclear if this is a good idea, but it should be evident that voice marketing is crucial for any business.
Optimizing for Voice Search
Here are some ways you can optimize your business for voice marketing:
A featured snippet refers to the text shown as the top result featured on Google or any other search engine. When conducting a voice search, the smart speaker or voice assistant will likely respond by reading the featured snipped box.
Therefore, to optimize for voice search, you should focus on obtaining a featured snippet text so it will be read out loud by the machine. But scoring a featured snippet is not that simple. To better understand how search engines select the snippets, you should study the types of questions people ask about your industry. Only then will you be able to know which content should be created to answer the user requests with the precise and correct format.
People will probably use voice search when they are limited on time and need to find information quickly. That implies that consumers are actively looking for something online at such moments. Using the appropriate keywords on your website can help you concentrate on these moments.
The Wordstream keyword tool, called Keyword Planner, is one example of a digital marketing tool you can use to research the keywords consumers use in these moments. You can enter the keyword of interest to learn what people are looking for linked to that keyword.
This will help you optimize voice and text search by identifying what people are searching for.
Google My Business
Google My Business, now known as a Google Business Profile, allows you to list the details of your business so it appears on local Google searches and Google Maps. For example, your business name, description, address, price range, phone number, and business hours should be included. Setting up a Google Business Profile helps optimize your company’s website in local searches.
When users search for “Stores near me” or “Places near me,” Google will recognize the “near me” and provide the results of the places in their area. Therefore, if your business is nearby and listed in Google, your website will also appear in the results.
Utilize Long-Tailed Keywords and Question Phrases
Short-tail keywords are typically used when optimizing keyboard searches because consumers tend to enter less and look for results. However, people are okay with asking for what they want while utilizing voice search. Therefore, you should use longer sentences and inquiries to optimize your website and make it voice search-friendly.
Furthermore, you should include more question phrases on your business website because many questions are asked when using voice search technology. However, it would be best if you did a lot of question research to identify what users are asking about your industry.
Voice search technology is rapidly becoming more relevant. As this technology rises, businesses should adapt it to stay ahead and gain a competitive advantage.
By implementing a voice marketing strategy, you can optimize your website for voice search and appear in relevant searches. This will help you get discovered and increase brand awareness regardless of the user making a voice search or keyboard search.
Optimizing for voice search takes work. However, obtaining featured snippets and implementing long-tail keywords and question phrases will place you in front of the rest and likely earn a spot on the top result for a voice search query.
So, what do you think of this growing voice search technology? Are you ready to jump on the trend?
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