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More Than SEO: Optimizing Your Website For Voice Search

As marketers, we talk about search engine optimization constantly. Search algorithms change daily, and we're all trying to keep up to make sure we're showing up in search results. It's 2020, and we need to start thinking beyond how we're ranking on search engines such as Google or Bing

According to Google, 20% of mobile quiries are voice searches, and this number is growing increasingly each day, thanks to the growing poplarity of voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa, Apple's Siri, Microsoft's Cortana, Samsung's Bixby, and Google Home. Roughly half of the population uses voice search today.

People use voice search for a large variety of reasons, spanning from research and inquiries to ordering food from local restaurants. According to BrightLocal's Voice Search for Local Business Study 2018, inviduals are most likely to use voice search for the following industries:

  • Restaurants and cafes (51%)

  • Grocery stores (41%)

  • Food delivery (35%)

  • Clothing stores (32%)

  • Hotels (30%)

When turning to voice search, consumers are generally looking for general information, local information, and entertainment. For marketers, it's important to know how these individuals are referring to your industry and what they're asking for through voice. It's not always the same as what they would type. We also recommend using local tags in anchor text and meta titles or descriptions, such as "near me". Here are a few additional ways to optimize your content for voice search.

Optimize Your Website With Featured Snippets

Featured snippets appear toward the top of Google search results and meant to provide quick answers to the person's search quirry, rather than a page that will hopefully contain the answer. If you're able to accomplish receiving search snippets, you increase the likelihood of being found in voice search results. Roughly 41% of voice search answers come from a featured snippet

Add Schema Markup to Your Site

Schema markup is code on your website that helps search engines return more informative results for users. These rich snippets appear in search results and this marked-up information is searchable by digital assistants. 

Optimize Your Google My Business Page

Google My Business is a free directory listing through Google, which is something your business should be taking adantage of anyway. But it's also helpful when potential customers are trying to find businesses through voice search. So now you've got an additional reason to take advantage of this free tool. Don't even finish reading this post; just go set it up. (Just kidding, we're almost done anyway.)

Voice shopping is projected to reach $40 billion in the United States by 2022. Start taking advantage of voice search opportunities before it's too late. It does not require a significant investment (typically), but can major postive results.

How has your business already begun embracing voice search? Tell us in the comments area below!

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