The world of SEO is constantly evolving. Naturally, your business and your business website will want (that is, need) to keep up with the ever-present changes in the online world in order to keep getting clicks, eyes, and the positive attention that come with them.
When it comes to SEO, many of the strategies that have worked in the past just won’t cut it in 2019. This statement isn’t limited only to tactics that might diplomatically be termed “underhanded.” No, it can also refer to the most basic elements of content creation.
That’s because people don’t search for answers to their problems in the same way that they did even just a few short years ago.
What’s changed? A lot of things, actually. One of the biggest ones? The advent of voice search.
A very short history of voice search usage stats
To many of us, finding answers using voice search has become almost second-nature. That means it’s surprising to some to find out that this method of looking for information online has only just recently become commonplace. But this searching method that started out small has grown tremendously in a relatively short period of time.
Google first added the voice search feature to Google Maps way back in the summer of 2008. It wasn’t until 2012 that the company launched a broader, more general version of voice search that went beyond the one used by the company’s web mapping service.
By May of 2016, around 20% of searches on Android devices were voice searches. In fact, by the summer of 2018, voice searches were being conducted 35 times more often compared to their levels in 2008. And it’s estimated that by 2020, roughly half of all searches will be voice searches.
That means voice search will keep growing
Although we might see ups and downs when measuring certain aspects of voice search trends from year to year, the overall arc is turning toward an increase. And you can see this in 2019 through the heavy competition various voice assistants are engaged in to try to win your business.
But regardless of whether you prefer to search using Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, or one of the multitude of others, the way that you conduct searches by voice is going to be very different from the way you conduct them when you have to type out your queries.
Why is the way people search using voice search so different?
If you’ve been a fan of Triple Canopy Media’s blog posts (and thanks, by the way), then you may already have a clue about how to answer this question.
Brevity likely shaped the old way you conducted an online search for a product you wanted to buy or a service that you needed to help address a business pain point. That’s a fancy way of saying that when most people have to type something out on a keyboard, they probably use fewer words than when they get to talk to a voice assistant.
People are more likely to speak in complete sentences when they use voice search as opposed to the fragments that they might hammer out using the old-school method of typing.
To help illustrate this, let’s say that I need some repair work done to the brakes on my car. I may very well use the same language to conduct that search whether I’m conducting it by voice or typing out my request. But I’m more likely to speak to my device the way that I would converse with a person.
Below are a couple of screenshots illustrating how that could make a difference in the search engine results pages that I will get.
Both of these searches were conducted using Google on a desktop and are tied to the ZIP code 44240.
The first one was a typed query: “brake repair near me.” That seems like a logical set of words to use, right?
In contrast, the second one was done using voice. Since I was speaking, it seemed more natural to ask a question in the form of a full sentence. In this case, I went with, “where can I get my brakes fixed [?]”
As you can see, these two queries produced a different set of results. If your auto repair shop specializes in brake repair, obviously you want to be as close to the top as you can get in both of these searches.
But as a business owner, one of your main takeaways should be that the importance of the number one spot in the voice search query is going to grow exponentially as people use this technology more and more to find solutions to their problems online.
Can my business get found by users performing voice search queries?
We’re glad you asked!
The answer is yes! But as always, getting found involves content. It’s a good thing that Triple Canopy Media knows a thing or two about content strategy!
Getting found when it comes to voice search starts with getting found to begin with.
When it comes to content, your company’s website should have lots of it. But it’s not just about content volume. You also need to make sure, of course, that the writing on your website consists of high-quality content.
Your blog posts should cover topics that are relevant to what your business does. The content on your company website should illuminate some aspect of your industry. Inform your audience, answer questions that readers are asking, and do it all in a readable, engaging, and conversational manner.
To sum up: The writing on your site ought to provide readers with value. That will help keep their eyes on the page once they find you, and that should get them to come back in the future.
In a follow-up post, we’ll discuss some of the step-by-step approaches you can take to make sure your content will get the attention you want from voice search browsers as the voice search revolution continues.
And, as always, feel free to contact us here at Triple Canopy Media for all of your SEO-related queries. We want you to get found, so find us!