Siri, How Do I Optimize for Voice Searches on Google?
As always, search engine optimization (SEO) is a concern for small businesses, and all businesses, for that matter.
But a new factor for ranking on Google has emerged over the last few years, and that is Voice Search from our smartphones and other mobile devices. Using services such as Cortana, Siri and even Google Voice Search have become the norm when researching local businesses and asking for business contact information from your phone. People are turning more to this type of search because of our fast-paced lifestyle, and because it is easier than typing and convenient while driving.
The first thing a business owner needs to do when trying to work with its marketing team to optimize for voice search is to understand how voice search works. This is accomplished by using voice search for yourself and by asking your family and friends if they are using it and how they are using it. For example, what are some common phrases or questions they ask for when using the voice text?
Another factor to consider is home assistant services such as Alexa or Echo. What type of questions do people ask their virtual home assistants? This is great information to gather from both a marketing standpoint and also to find out how people are looking for the services or products that you provide both in the home and while they are out moving through their day.
There are two final factors you need to look at as a business owner when optimizing for voice search. The first is whether you have a proper responsive design or mobile website set up and the proper way to measure its mobile-friendliness. This is one of the most important factors in mobile optimization anyway, so your marketing or website building team should already be on top of this factor. Second, try to have your marketing or search engine optimizer work in more long-tail keywords, meaning more phrases, not just a single keyword. So, think more like complete questions potential customers would ask if they were looking for your services or products.
I know all of this seems like a lot to do to be found or at least get to a place where you feel you are doing well on search engines. But that is what your local online marketing team is for, to help with search engine optimization across all media platforms so that you can focus on running your business, which, trust me, is a hard enough job.