Voice Search: The Next Wave of SEO

Voice Search: The Next Wave of SEO

Voice-prompted searches continue to gain ground with the internet. Ever since voice- activated assistants such as Siri, Cortana, and Alexa came to be, searches performed by voice commands have surged. By 2020, it’s projected that voice search will account for 50% of all searches. 72% of people who own voice-activated speakers say they use them as part of their daily routine. With all this potential, search engines are changing their approach to search

Changing how Search Engines Index Content

Voice Searches by Category
Searches by category, blue categories indicate voice search

This shifting method for performing searches is changing how search engines index, understand and relay your sites information to the end user. SEO itself has transformed recently, changing to an engine that tries to understand intent and structure of your website rather than just keywords. With voice searches, SEO is changing again.

The core foundations of SEO still remain important. This includes a properly laid out and organized site with helpful content and good load times will perform on search. However, we are already seeing a shift to cater to this new wave of search interaction. 40% of voice searches pull data from a site’s featured snippets and Google knowledge graphs. The Knowledge graph is how Google pairs searches with content so it is as relevant as possible.

What Does This Mean For Your Website?

Google also is leveraging Schema.org and your structured snippet for more than web searches. The content you provide is what Google pulls to give voice answers. This also means that content writers need to stop writing for web traffic only. As voice search becomes a larger percentage of overall web traffic, it’s important to create content that responds to voice needs. Voice doesn’t paraphrase. Having grammatically correct short answers available on your site is essential for voice search.

Since Google is using these tools for voice as well as search, it’s important that you optimize your site for both web and voice. It doesn’t appear that Google will break from this method and create some new ranking for voice. It’s more likely that the two will be incorporated. Some crucial areas of SEO will be even more impactful as voice search continues to grow. Schema.org has played a huge role in search. Soon Schema speakable markup will impact voice search. Currently speakable markup is being beta tested with some news media outlets.

Key Voice Search Takeaways

By 2019, we should see speakable structured data begin to roll out publicly. A solid web presence network will become increasingly crucial. This includes social media, Wikipedia, and backlinks. Having your information on multiple websites gives Google a pool of data to pull from and generate a Knowledge Graph. It’s never been more important to take some time and ensure that you are not only optimized for current search strategies, but that you are prepared for the future. It’s clear that voice will play a larger role going forward. Leaving your site as it sits now will negatively impact your search rankings. Get ready for the speakable future. Contact us today for an SEO audit and make sure you are set up to succeed.

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