More often than not, when our clients engage with us for SEO services (and quite a few who use us for PPC services), ask about voice search and how they should approach it when it comes to SEO, we kind of have a bit of a stock answer – that its still in its infancy, hasn’t truly matured and we discuss the area around how to monetise voice search, especially for PPC. It got us thinking, that we need to develop a piece of content that doesn’t focus on the technical side of voice search, but more around content as a brand/website owner.
Voice search has had huge growth over the last few years, even going back to 2019, when eMarketer survey results showed that nearly 40% of US internet users find the answers they are looking for by using voice search, we know it plays a major part of our “working” day. Now, if you think that you don’t use voice search, then I’ll ask you, do you own an Amazon Alexa, Google Mini, use SIRI, Google Assistant on your phone and so on? If the answer is yes, then you’ve used voice search. More and more people are using voice search to make purchase decisions, find local needs from restaurants, businesses, find music, information – anything they need/want, all at the end of a verbal question.
So How Do You Optimise Content for Voice Search?
Its like Talking to a Friend
Text search is fairly linear, you type in a search term, phrase of something you are looking for an hit enter – you may do this 3-4 times to refine the results until you find something you are looking for. With voice search, its conversational – you need to develop your content as though you were talking to a friend – where you ask more questions, add different words and ways of saying certain things – you tend to add alot more words when it comes to voice search (maybe you could say, that text search is lazy to that respect), voice search flows easier and seems more humanistic and natural, because you can “ask questions”. With that in mind, you need to approach optimising your content towards longtail keywords, that answer questions.
As mentioned above, its about answering questions, but you need to find out what consumers are asking before you can answer it. There are lots of ways to build out a comprehensive question set of what consumers may be asking, you can simply start with “How do you use X” – X being your product or service, then expand that to “The Benefits of using X” and so on and so on. Pull together as many of the questions around the topic/theme that you can think of, if there are any that are similar – merge them into one question – then answer each of the questions comprehensively but make sure not to waffle.
Building out your content topics and themes with questions and answers for your products and services, allows you to focus on what you need to explain, but also end up with a longer form piece of content on your site, with multiple consumer questions and answers all in one place.
Google Search Console – A Great Source of Questions/Themes
If you’ve installed and setup Google Search Console for your website, then this is a great way to find some questions and themes that people put into search engines and your site has been served in Google search results. When undertaking a content marketing strategy for clients, I use Google Search Console to extract all the queries that they have shown for (its limited to the first 1000 queries in Google Search Console, but if you connect Google Search Console via Google Analytics, then you can have 10,000 plus more). I break these down into the typical “Can, How, What, Where, When” questions, and extract those into a separate tab in the spreadsheet. From here, you can collate themes together that are similar in questions around the products and services, problems, barriers that consumers have – built out topics to develop into content, go through the “questions” section above, listing lots of questions and then answering them in depth.
Feel free to get in contact if you need any help setting up Google Search Console for your site or if you need help with your content marketing strategy.
Google rates voice search results by how well the spoken response sounds and how well it answers the question. You will have to familiarise yourself with Google’s guidelines and get to know what they need in a perfect voice search response. Making yourself an expert in this area will ensure that your response will rank highly and be chosen to answer particular queries, but as mentioned above it can be a little hit and miss in terms of how “mature” the whole platform area is, so keep this in mind.
Examine your keyword planner
Google’s keyword planner is often used by advertisers, SEO folk and brands alike, but you can use it too to get keyword ideas and create content for search queries and questions that consumers are asking. You can extract different keywords and build out an SEO keyword matrix (what keywords you use to try and rank for organically) and use those within your product pages and blog content to send signals to search engines.
Make Sure You Complete Your Listing on Google Places and Others
Make sure to do this while including your keywords wherever you can. Your listings are not just for organisations but also for the best placement in your Google search results. Your business listing will help your business to appear whenever someone searches for local businesses in your industry. It also helps take up real estate on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) right hand side, where you want your brand to feature.
FAQ Pages Can Be A Great Way for Top of Funnel Traffic
You can create different pages that answer various questions and categorise them into sections. As mentioned above, using something like Google Search Console – you can mine what questions people are asking/searching for and then categorise them and add them to your site – Voice search does love a bit of an FAQ area, as its a simple and quick way to find the answer to a user searching for it – make sure to list a wide variety of questions and make sure they sound like something a person may actually say aloud into their device. You can create an umbrella FAQ page, but it might make more sense to have specific pages for different questions and categories if it means increasing the likelihood of your website being picked up for a voice search answer.
Develop User Friendly Content
It goes without saying that we always want to develop accurate content, but for Voice Search Optimisation it really does need to focus on quality, including grammar as the information will be read out aloud from your site, so any issues or mistakes will stand out and make a user think negatively of your brand. Some of the tools that you can use to “double check” your content are:
- Study demic and My writing way are copywriting guides that can help you write without fluff and with perfect wording.
- State of writing and Elite assignment help are editing tools that can help you create simple and accurate answers to many questions.
- Via writing and Academ advisor are grammar checkers and tools that can help you eliminate all of the pesky grammar mistakes in your content.
As voice search becomes more and more common, and “mature” as marketers and brands alike, we need to think more about optimising our sites for those who will ask questions and have your content “read out aloud” – even in that annoying Alexa voice. Its not going away and no doubt will factor more and more as more consumers adapt to using it – so now is as good a time as ever, to think about Voice Search when developing content for your brand and hopefully those who come into the top of the funnel as leads. If you need any help with your SEO strategy and looking for an agency that can take your organic traffic to the next level, then get in touch today for a free consultation and chat.