Optimize Your Website for Voice Search

According to a Global Web Index Study, one-in-five mobile users rely on voice search to find information.  This makes sense when you consider that mobile usage frequently occurs in environments that make typing and/or looking at a screen difficult and sometimes even dangerous.  Younger users are more likely to find typing time-consuming; preferring instead to “talk to their phones” as an easier, faster and more intuitive way to communicate.

Voice searches are different than typed searches. When people are voice searching, they tend to talk a lot more. That means they have longer queries that use more complex phrases as opposed to entering short keywords in a search engine.

Because of the growing reliance on voice searches, online content creation and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for your website must change in order to adapt to it. But the new method of optimization is significantly different than the old methods that are used for typed searches.

As a reminder, SEO is the practice of employing relevant keywords in your content in order to increase its chances of appearing as a top result of an Internet query. Typed keywords in search queries are typically short phrases such as “web server”. When people use voice search they use complete sentences. Therefore, a good search engine marketing strategy is to create content with those long phrases in mind.

There are a number of actionable steps you can take right now to get your website voice-search ready. These include:

  • Implement long-tail keywords and phrases. Begin adding longer keyword phrases to your site to accommodate the longer phrases used in queries from voice searchers. Optimize for complete questions in order to help the search engines categorize your webpages and access them more quickly for user queries.
  • Use FAQ’s strategically. Remember the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page?  Now you can use it to optimize for voice searches. Create specific “who, what, where, why and how” questions that your customers are most likely asking.  Write the questions out on the FAQ page on your site, your blog and your social media posts.
  • Write content in a natural voice. Voice searchers speak in a conversational manner. By writing in a conversational tone, you will be speaking the language used by your customers in voice search. This will help the search engines find your content.
  • Add location information. Add XML Sitemaps, location data and other information that the search engines can use to provide quick answers to requests for locations. According to Google’s blog, 40% of adults use voice search to get directions, making location specific data readable on the webpage absolutely critical in order to be found through voice-activated search.

Now that voice searching is becoming more prevalent, the next step in website evolution is to adapt your SEO to accommodate it.  As an award winning SEO agency, KEO Marketing can help make sure your website design and search engine optimization plans contain strategies that take advantage of the unique needs of vocalized searches.

Sheila Kloefkorn (1031 Posts)

With more than 20 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world’s largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing,, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.