The impact voice search is having on SEO is big and getting bigger. According to Sundar Pichai, Google CEO, voice searches account for 20% of mobile queries. In October 2014, 41% of adults and 55% of teens said they use voice search at least once a day. Some projections suggest that voice search could grow to 50% of all queries by 2020. If you’re a marketer, optimizing for voice search is clearly the future of SEO.
In our last SEO blog post, we provided a few tips to help you align your optimization plan to fit with the growing popularity of voice search. But what’s next? Whether your customers are using Google’s voice recognition app, Apple’s Siri or Microsoft’s Cortana, voice search makes online browsing more convenient by allowing people to search by speaking rather than typing. As the technology continues to evolve, we’re moving a step up from simple voice recognition to conversational search — voice understanding: search that responds to natural phrases by interpreting the meaning and context behind the words used.
Voice search by its very nature is more conversational, using natural language (generally 5 words or more) vs shorter text queries (1-3 words). As such, artificial intelligence (AI) technology is evolving to understand user intent and context, such as previous search queries and past user behavior and actions, to better anticipate your search needs.
For marketers, the longer queries from voice search provide richer user intent data because they tend to explicitly ask a question. In the new SEO model, content that can meet users where they’re at by answering these questions will give sites a clear advantage. It’s experience vs information architecture, content vs isolated keywords.
The future of SEO is all about overall content optimization, and a new definition: “Subject Experience Optimization”—delivering the best possible experience for the subject — the guest. To keep up, marketers need to provide content that helps create the connection the modern online guest craves and expects.
At Filament we are very strong believers that your content is a vital part of your website SEO, be it mobile or stationary, voice or keyboard. While some tips, tricks and techniques evolve and change in the world of search, content will always play a vital role in reaching the right audience and holding their interest. Great content will even transform visitors into brand representatives. Contact us if you’re interested in hiring content creation leaders to help you with voice search SEO.