We have always rejoiced at the way how Tony Stark in Ironman had conversation with Jarvis about day to day related queries. We always wanted that particular “friend” who we would like to ask endless questions and rely on them with accurate answers.
Google, Bing and Amazon Echo are surely onto the path of either becoming a star trek computer or a Jarvis, with all the companies giving a lot of importance to voice and conversational search and continuously developing their voice personal assistant.
People love change and they want more interactive search queries and not the same old text queries. People are always onto the lookout on saving more and more time. Already 55% of adult and 41% of adult use voice search on daily basis. Now more and more users want direct answers rather than links because of which having a well thought voice search SEO strategy is very important in the future for businesses especially online businesses.
Voice chat is also becoming increasingly reliable as technology improves. In fact, two years ago word error rate was over 20%, but current speech recognition word error rate is as low as 8%—a huge leap in a short amount of time.
Very few people type the way they speak. Usually while typing people use sort of short hand language for example “Bangalore weather”. But in voice search it is more likely for people to ask complete questions like “What is the weather like in Bangalore?” As programs like Cortana, Google Now and Siri are becoming more refined their programming is becoming better and more refined. There is increase in the use of these programs.
Now voice search is capable of interpreting and responding to many things:
1.) Conversational Voice Search
Google can now easily answer queries based on queries. For example “Where is the Taj Mahal ” and then if you ask “Show me pictures ” then google understands the reference of Taj Mahal.
2.) Queries Based On Location
Suppose your are New Delhi and search for “Movies To See”, google is smart enough to understand your location and return queries based on your location. Instead of showing some other places screening of movies. It shows the screening of movies at New Delhi.
3.) Context About Us
Google by the virtue of it machine learning based algorithm, it has become very smart and can learn about individual. It can directly handle transactions related query like ” Buy a pair of jeans” and it remembers your waist size and takes you to catalog of products showing jeans of waist size of your waist.
Impact On SEO
Voice Search will certainly have a tremendous impact on Search Engines as now companies will be focusing on log tail keywords rather than short tail keywords, The content would now be more specific and user-centric content. But at the same time we need to understand that people who are typing a query and people who are using voice search are looking for different things. And so strategies should be made accordingly to appeal both the kinds of users.
So companies can optimize their website for voice search in the following ways:
1.) Focus on Long Tail Keywords
Companies should now focus on long tail keywords because the voice search will be more specific to a particular topic which the user would want to find a quick answer to instead of having a content on a very vast topic.
2.) Provide Context With Schema Markup
During conversational searches, search engine usually look for context of the queries. Context can refer to previous question, location or can refer to an individual person. This HTML add-on helps search engines understand the context of your content, which means you rank better in normal searches, and you’ll be more relevant in specific queries made through voice search.
3.) Optimize Your Site’s Metadata
Site’s metadata is mostly stored on robot.txt and sitmap.xml files. More focus should be given to sitemap and robot file so that they are easily readable and visible to search engines.
4.) Do Keyword Research On Conversational Queries
Keyword research tools like Google Keyword planner will let you autocomplete queries using a keyword and a wildcard. Base the questions on the FAQs described above and look for commonly searched long tail keywords to figure out what questions you should be answering.
5.) Add Page That Answers FAQ
When voice searchers as a question, they typically begin it with “Who,” “What,” “Where,” “When,” “Why,” and “How,” and they’re looking for answers that fulfill an immediate need. To answer these queries, make a FAQs page and begin each question with these adverbs. Then answer them conversationally to appeal to voice search.
Where Are We Headed?
With so much development and research going on google’s algorithm, the expected changes in google search engine would be many and very futuristic. Google has an aim to provide users with direct answers for which voice search will play major role. Voice search will make google search engine more interactive and more user friendly to use.
Now where does it leave SEO? The traditional SEO will be there for the text query. But google will be favoring those website which adds better functionality to integrates and support conversational and voice searches in its google search engine. Google and other search engines is moving forward at a very fast pace. And it is very important to keep ahead of this development in order to gain most from the new strategies created by many of the companies.
What Are Your Thoughts?
Let us know about what you think about all the other companies increased focus on voice searches and what are you doing to stay ahead of the race. Share your thoughts and views in the comments below.