Understanding the Impact of Voice Search on SEO in 2020

Smart assistants like Google Assistant, Siri, Cortana, and others are getting increasingly smarter. Combined with how accessible these assistants are, their usage is only going to increase.

The year 2019 witnessed 3.25 billion digital voice assistants, and these numbers are on the rise. Let’s take a look at the projected figures for the coming years and voice search statistics 2020.

Impact of Voice Search

In the US alone, there were more than 110 million virtual assistant users. Likewise, Amazon’s Alexa sold more than 60,000 smart home devices in 2019.

So, there is no doubt that people are using voice searches more than ever and this trend has stirred the marketing and promotion departments across the globe. With more and more people opting for voice searches and voice commands for accomplishing searches and other tasks, it has become crucial for brands and business organizations to rethink their SEO strategies.

The chronically expanding numbers of mobile users and smart digital assistant users are driving a paradigm shift in the world of SEO. The stats of voice search trends across the US are an eye-opener for the businesses that are hesitant towards adopting this digitally disruptive trend.

So, how crucial is this impact of voice search on SEO going to be for business relevance? How are voice searches going to affect general SEO practices? How to keep your SEO game top-notch and future-ready? And, is there a way to make your marketing and promotional strategies compatible with voice-searches?

Let us find answers to all these and many other consequential questions related to the voice search impact on SEO.

Let us begin by exploring the term voice search.

What is Voice Search?

Voice Search is defined as a speech recognition technology that empowers its users to do searches by saying the search terms aloud, instead of typing.

With the emergence of IoT (Internet of Things) and smart devices for public use we have only just started tapping in to the immense potential of this technology. Virtual Assistants on smartphones, smart devices for homes, and smart appliances that communicate with their users are some of the examples.

The popularity of this technology is evident from the following voice search trends:

  • 25% of the digital workforce will employ virtual employee assistants daily.
  • Google Voice Search (mobile devices) recognizes more than 100 languages now.
  • 55% of the teens and 41% of the adults use voice searches daily as per the 2014 Google report. And, the projected numbers for 2020 are astounding.
What Makes Voice Searches so Popular?

Before we move on to finding the voice search impact on SEO, let us find out what makes it so popular.

Seeing the results of incorrect google searches has been the source of occasional entertainment, because honestly, those results are sometimes hilarious. A pretty basic feature if you look at it but, Voice search consumes very less time as compared to type-based searches, and you don’t have to worry about grammatical errors as well. Searching for difficult terms and question-based searches are easier when you give voice commands.

The voice search page results are loaded 52% faster, and users love it when they can avail services without any delay.

Hence, higher levels of customer satisfaction are another positive voice search effect.

Voice Search Impact on SEO – How to Make Your Brand Future-Ready?

Voice search is all set to boost in 2020. It is estimated that by 2020, half of the searches on the Internet will be carried out by voice inputs.

There is no denying the fact that voice searches will disrupt the conventions of SEO. Since typing won’t be required, consumers will prefer long sentences for online searches. As more and more buyers from both B2B and B2C industries will use voice commands to make purchases, web owners will have to tweak their SEO strategies.

Let us find out how voice searches will impact your SEO strategies and how to make your brand future-ready.

1. Long-Tail Keywords in Content.

Voice search frees the users from typing, and they tend to opt for long search phrases to make their searches more contextual.

Impact of Voice Search

If you have been working on short keywords to keep your SEO on-point for text-based searches, now is the time to consider the long-tail keywords as well. While doing so, try to focus on context as well. We will discuss the importance of context in voice search optimized SEO in a separate point, but you must know the more contextual your keywords are, the more is their likelihood of being crawled and appearing in top searches.

Takeaway:

To make your SEO compatible with voice searches, focus on long-tailed keywords while keeping the context of search phrases intact. Keeping your SEO aimed at long tailed keywords aligning with user search intent.

2. Focus on Natural and Conversational Language.

The number of question-based queries has increased considerably over the years. People employ a conversational tone while doing voice searches. The search terms and phrases comprise ‘who, what, why, when, does, is, where’ and lots of other such question-words.

So, to make your SEO marketing and promotion skills future-ready, you have to focus on creating content with a natural and conversational tone. Your blogs, write-ups, and even videos must revolve around questions that your customers might ask.

But then again, how to figure out the questions your customers have in their minds? How to figure out their searching style and how to get correct customer search projections concerning your brand?

We will address these queries in the next point.

Takeaway:

Rethink your content creation strategies and SEO strategies by shifting towards natural and conversational language. Regional language elements and local linguistics’ trends can come to your rescue in this regard.

3. Surveys Your Customers to Know How They Use Voice Search and What Do They Search About the Brands They Value.

If we ask what the most reliable and credible way of knowing what your customers want is, then one of the best and most reliable solutions is – A robust survey.

Intelligent and smart surveys help you to get the right insights from your customer bases. You can directly ask them what services they want, how they make most of their searches, how they relate to your brand, and what type of blogs and write-ups they read most of the time. Surveys help you draw actionable insights from highly credible data sources and curate exceptional customer experiences. Take a look at the latest voice search trends to have a better understanding.

All the service and product-based brands and business organizations thrive on customers and customer experiences. So, the importance of customer experience can never be undermined if you wish to make your business future-ready.

Though you can create surveys on your own, there are many brilliant tools and online survey makers that can help you create a survey that is intelligent, intuitive, comprehensive, and targeted. The online survey makers come with lots of survey question examples to take cues from. Such as, take a look at the following screenshot to understand how a survey helps in making your SEO sharp:

Impact of Voice Search

If you have an app, do a customer satisfaction survey, and if you have a website-based online presence, do a website feedback survey to find about your customers’ demands and their brand expectations. Later you can draw inferences from this data to tweak your SEO strategies.

Takeaway:

Conducting a survey will help you learn about your customer searches and brand expectations so that you can amplify your customer experience by making it compatible with their searches.

4. Focus on Semantics as Well.

We pointed it out in the earlier point that you must focus on the context of searches. Semantics are crucial for the overall health of your SEO strategies. You cannot keep on enjoying the benefit of the doubt by offering a random combination of search terms in a blog or write-up.

AI and ML have changed the way crawlers and search engines work. Google’s RankBrain is an AI-based search engine that empowers the brand to understand words and phrases (as per the context and semantics) for better search results. Before we move ahead, you must know that Google has a market share of 87.35%.

So, to pop-up in the high-ranking search results, you have to make sure that your key phrases are contextually and semantically correct.

Takeaway:

Make sure your key phrases are semantically and contextually correct. AI and ML algorithms have changed the way search engines work altogether. So, make sure you are relevant and correct!

5. Local Search Optimization is Crucial.

As per the voice search statistics 2020, around 58% of the people find local businesses and listings by using voice searches. So, in order to keep appearing in local searches, you have to optimize your brands and businesses for them.

So, instead of opting for keywords like ‘best bars Minnesota’, you must focus on search phrases like ‘What are some of the best bars in Minnesota?’ or ‘Where are the best bars near me?’.

However, don’t forget to make sure that your search phrase inclusions are relevant to the context and semantics. Stuffing them with random keywords is not going to rank you in top search results.

Takeaway:

Most of the local searches are done as voice searches. So, optimize your voice search marketing for the local searches.

6. Focus on Search Engine Results Page or SERPs

Most of the voice search results rank in the top three positions in SERPs. The Rich Answer Boxes that appear on the top of the search results’ pages are the answers to voice searches. Further, 30% of Google queries feature snippets. These snippets from the brands and business organizations are given preferences in voice searches and traditional searches.

Ensuring that you rank higher in SERPs should be paramount to strategy. It takes a lot of effort but it is well worth the effort put into reaching there. Hence, voice search impact on SEO cannot be ignored, no matter what.

Takeaway:

Schema markup and rich snippets can prove beneficial in keeping your content contextual and well-understood by a majority of search engines.

Final Verdict

Voice search and SEO go hand in hand for the brands that are future-ready. Voice Search Optimization makes your brand visible, increases brand awareness, and fetches more traffic. Voice search optimization brings more direct users to your website and helps you in client conversion and sales.

So, to make your brands and businesses relevant to future consumers, make sure to let voice searches drive your SEO agenda. Gather correct customer expectations by creating smart surveys with the help of online survey makers and create content that is relevant to incoming voice searches.

We hope that all our readers find this discussion helpful and draw thoughtful takeaways and insightful inferences to revamp their strategies for SEO and voice search marketing.

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