From retail to healthcare, sports to real estate, news and media to entertainment, advancements in artificial intelligence are making headlines in almost every industry.
Related technologies such as Siri, Alexa, Cortana and products such as Google Home and Amazon Echo have significantly changed the way consumers search for information online. Sure, people still use text to search for nearby restaurants or to keep up with the latest celebrity news, but voice is making significant headways with observers touting this as the next frontier for search.
With voice search being a relatively new phenomenon in the world of search engine marketing, how can you tailor your content to rank in the highly competitive search results?
Go Beyond Long-Tail Keywords
Unlike text search, voice search takes on a more natural speech pattern. The questions users ask Siri, Alexa, or Cortana are longer and inherently conversational.
The use of long-tail keywords is a best practice for optimising content for search. Admittedly, SEO has evolved from just the use of regular keywords and now, long-tail phrases provide better visibility at the search engine.
However, where voice is concerned, a search strategy that only depends on the traditional use of long-tail keywords may not deliver the results and visibility you want.
To optimise for voice, integrate long-tail questions, not just mere keywords, into your content. An excellentplace to start is with tools such as Story Base, Answer The Public, or Question Samurai, which can populate a single keyword or phrase into who, what, where, when, and how questions. Use these long-tail query keywords to create useful content related to your products and services.
Anticipate Your Customers’ Micro Moments
Voice search queries take place withina particular context. These contexts are what Google calls Micro Moments,i.e. ‘intent-rich moments when someone uses a device to act on a specific need’ such as to buy, to do, to go, or to know.
What’s the implication of micro-moments for voice optimisation? Understanding these intent-rich moments presents an opportunity to anticipate the intention behind a voice query. In turn, this allows you to create content, and paid search listings that deliver accurate answers that address users’ needs.
Integrate back-end Schema Markup
Few marketers want to mess around with backend code. However, making sure your schema markup is structured and updated is one of the most effective ways to prep your site for voice search. Here’s an excellent place to learn about structured data.
Schema markup is code that allows search engines to decipher the content on your pages. Considering that the majority of voice queries are local searches, adding scheme markup is a smart way to make information such as business contacts searchable by voice.
With studies predicting that by 2020, customers will conduct nearly half of all searches via voice, now is a good time to set out a strategy to optimise your online marketing collateral for voice search. If you have the basics of SEO covered, you should be able to learn the ropes of voice optimisation relatively fast.