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Amanda Koehler

Digital Marketing Practice Director

For more than a decade, Amanda has helped Northwoods clients achieve their digital marketing goals through impactful, data-driven digital marketing strategies. Her approach is centered on careful listening, meticulous research, and a deep understanding of data analytics, and she holds certificates in both Google Analytics and Google AdWords. An experienced lecturer and webinar presenter, Amanda is one of our top digital trailguides and has helped countless students, clients, and marketers better understand the complex world of SEO and analytics. Away from Northwoods, she enjoys spending time cooking, traveling, and painting.

What You Need to Know About Voice Search in 2023

July 24, 2023 | Amanda Koehler, Digital Marketing Practice Director

4 Minute Read

In recent years, voice search has emerged as a transformative technology that’s reshaping the way we interact with businesses online. Voice search has evolved into a mainstream method of accessing information.

But what kind of information? Should all businesses consider voice search as part of their marketing strategy? Let’s break it down.

The Rise of Voice Search

Voice assistants reside in our smartphones, smart speakers, and even cars. They’ve become ubiquitous because of their convenience, speed, and natural language processing capabilities.

Still, voice search hasn’t completely replaced traditional search, especially in such business-related tasks as buying expensive or highly configurable products, finding B2B services, and researching topics.

Most studies conducted in the last several years came to the same conclusions: Voice search is on the rise, with the quick question as the most common use case: checking the weather, playing music, sending a text, checking traffic, adding items to a grocery list. Most people don’t voice-search to purchase products currently. However, this is changing quickly. Many people who have adopted voice search for purchasing products do so through their Amazon account. If you sell online, now’s the time to consider your Amazon store if you want to tap into voice search.

These metrics indicate that not all businesses are suited to utilize voice search tactics and optimization techniques. But what business models do match up well with voice search?

Local Businesses

Local businesses, such as restaurants, retail stores, salons, and healthcare providers, stand to gain the most from voice search optimization. Voice search queries often have local intent, so it’s crucial to make your business information easily accessible through voice assistants. When potential customers ask their voice assistants for recommendations or nearby services, you want your business to be among the top results. Optimizing for local SEO and incorporating relevant location-based keywords improve your chances of appearing high in voice search results, which drives more potential customers to your establishment.

E-Commerce Websites

An intuitive voice-based shopping experience – one with voice-enabled product search, personalized recommendations, and seamless voice-activated transactions – enhances customer convenience and increases sales at e-commerce businesses. Optimized product descriptions and metadata with voice-friendly keywords can improve visibility in voice search results and give your products an edge over the competition.

Content Creators and Publishers

Voice search has significant implications for content creators and publishers. Voice assistants now read aloud search results, snippets, and featured content, which has opened the opportunity to capture users' attention through voice-optimized content. Creating engaging, informative, and voice-friendly content – blog posts, podcasts, video scripts, etc. – raises the likelihood of being featured in voice search results. Structured data markup and long-tail, conversational keywords improve your content's chances of being selected for voice snippets, which expand your reach and drive organic traffic to your website.

How to Optimize Your Website for Voice Search

  1. Optimize for Voice-Friendly Keywords and Phrases
    Voice search queries tend to be more conversational and longer compared to typed queries. To optimize your digital presence for voice search, research and incorporate voice-friendly keywords and phrases into your website's content. Consider the natural language your target audience uses when seeking information and ensure that your content provides direct, concise, and contextually relevant answers to common voice search queries.
  2. Structured Data Markup for Rich Results
    Implementing structured data markup on your website can significantly enhance its visibility in voice search results. Structured data gives search engines additional context about your content. It enables them to generate rich snippets and concise answers, which voice assistants often read aloud. Utilize schema markup for such important information as business details, FAQs, and product data, to raise the chances of appearing in featured snippets and in position zero.
  3. Mobile-Friendly and Fast-Loading Websites
    As voice search is predominantly performed on mobile devices, it's crucial to prioritize mobile optimization. Ensure that your website is responsive, mobile-friendly, and offers a seamless user experience across various screen sizes. Prioritize fast-loading pages, as voice searches often prioritize quick results. A slow-loading website can lead to user frustration and drive potential customers to competitors.
  4. Local SEO and Voice Search
    Voice searchers often seek information about nearby businesses, services, and directions. Optimize your website for local SEO; it’s vital for capturing voice-search-driven traffic. Make sure your Google My Business profile is complete and up to date, including accurate address, phone number, and business hours. Incorporate location-specific keywords and create localized content to increase visibility in voice search results.

As more users embrace the convenience and simplicity of voice-based interactions, businesses must adapt and optimize their online presence accordingly. Understand the dynamics of voice search. Implement effective strategies, such as optimizing for voice-friendly keywords, leveraging structured data markup, prioritizing mobile optimization, and focusing on local SEO to position your business for voice-search success.

If you need assistance optimizing your website for voice search, reach out! Our SEO and content strategy experts are here to help.