Voice search commonly appears when discussing business-to-consumer search engine optimization. But we have come to the point where voice search is being used more often in asking for the next step of a recipe or getting directions to a nearby restaurant or shop.
Voice search is now being used for a number of different purposes and, with that, its impact on business-to-business decision-makers is on the rise as well.
Research shows that 41% of adults and 55% of teens use voice technology on a daily basis. Teens use it to get help with their homework, which shows an early adoption of voice technology for organic search. Adults, on the other hand, use voice search to dictate texts, showing a desire to refrain from typing on small devices.
According to Internet Trends 2016, the main consumer benefits of voice search are all related to improved user experience. Voice search is more user-friendly, simpler and faster. It helps those who struggle with typing on small devices and also helps internet users avoid navigating small, confusing website menus. Voice search guides the user to more accurate results.
This is not just the public’s opinion either. Google’s voice recognition technology has a 95% accuracy rate. Since 2013, this number has increased nearly 20%.
Voice search is clearly on the rise, so how can you get prepared for B2B voice search?
By 2020, it’s predicted that voice search will take up 50% of all searches. This prediction may not be that far of a stretch, according to current numbers. In 2016, Google reported that voice search contributed to 20% of its mobile queries.
In order to prepare for the effect voice search will have on B2B SEO, digital marketers need to start optimizing for voice queries. The three major ways to achieve this are:
1. Target long-tail keywords.
It’s a fair assumption that voice queries are more likely to be longer than that of a typed search and use a conversational language. To prepare for voice search, find long-tail keywords that are relevant to your business and put them in your website’s content to attract more natural language search queries.
2. Direct attention to mobile.
Voice searches are more likely to occur on mobile devices, so optimizing your company’s website is extremely important. But optimization goes beyond a mobile-responsive design. You also need to remove obtrusive interstitials, improve page loading speeds, format videos to display in full-screen when a user holds it vertically, abandon drop-down navigation menus, and improve the overall mobile user experience.
3. Target featured snippets.
Voice search devices read featured snippets and the source aloud when the snippet is populated. This creates a massive boost for authority and brand recognition since Google is basically declaring one particular company the expert on that particular subject. In retrospect to voice search, position zero is the new page one.
The best part about optimizing your website for voice search is that it improves your overall SEO, too. That being said, voice search isn’t its own initiative, but a reprioritization of your current SEO best practices.
B2B brands aren’t exempt from the impact voice search has on user behavior. Companies should start to take the time and prioritize their focus on voice search optimization.
You can easily get started by finding your Page One ranking keywords, analyze user search queries and update your content accordingly. This simple step will boost your brand’s recognition when a mobile device reads your company’s name as the top source in response to a user’s search query.