Ok Google, How Do I Optimize for Voice Search? Part 2

google_voiceIn our last article we discussed the changes to voice search and why it’s so important to optimize for it. Now let’s dive deeper with some tips to include in your marketing strategy.

Research How Your Brand Shows Up in Searches

It’s important for your brand to know how people are pronouncing the name of your product and how they are searching for it. Anticipating these issues and including solutions within your SEO can help when customers mispronounce or misspell your brand name. This is especially significant for foreign brand names. For example, did you know that the high-end French fashion brand Hermes is pronounced “AIR-mez” not “her-MEEZ”? It’s not just the high fashion brands that might have trouble, the grocery store has some mispronunciations as well. Greek yogurt brand Fage is pronounced “FA-Hey”, not “FAYGE” to rhyme with “page”. The point is that you just don’t know how people are pronouncing your brand name until you research. Once you do that, you can add different pronunciations as a test to your optimization strategy.

 Add Natural Language to Your Long-Tail Keywords

While short-tail keywords will still be relevant for those researching a product, the focus of mobile and voice search is turning more towards conversational, long-tail keywords. For example, when searching on a computer, you may type “European vacation deals”, but if you voice search, you will probably ask something like “What’s the best vacation spot in Europe?”. The first step for adjusting your SEO is to research what phrases are bringing people to your page through search engine results. You want to keep the broad keywords and topics within your SEO, but it will also serve you well to add in some natural-language and long-tail keywords within your SEO as well as within your SEM campaigns. For SEM specifically, bid on keywords based on what action you want people to take. So for awareness, you may want to bid on phrases like “What is Europe’s best vacation spot” but further down the funnel you may want to bid on something like “Cheap European vacation deals”.

Website Content is Becoming Just as Important as SEO

Search engines are becoming smarter in how they turn up results because they are looking for the context of the content in addition to SEO. You can increase your search engine rankings by making sure the content on your website is aligned with your SEO. You can also include your natural language keyword phrases throughout your website content and on landing pages to improve your rankings.

Answer People’s Questions

Voice searchers are often looking to fulfill some kind of immediate need and they will value the companies that are there to answer those needs. It’s one thing if people are directly looking for your product, but much more likely, voice searchers are looking to solve an issue that your product or service may solve for them. This is where content marketing comes into play again – your company should have an extensive section of your website that answers questions and gives information about your product or service so that search engines will add your name to the list when people ask those questions. In addition to getting ranked within the search engine results for that question, you will have the added benefit of answering a person’s question and building loyalty and authority on whatever subject they are researching.

Get Acquainted with Schema Markup

Schema markup is a code that you put on the backend of your website pages and content that help search engines understand the context of your content and return better results to users. Essentially, it tells search engines what your data means, not just what it says. By adding this to your SEO, you will not only rank better in normal searches, but you will be more relevant in voice searches since the search engines will understand what your website content is about.

Get Your Microdata in Order

Businesses, especially small local businesses and online retailers, should make sure to optimize their microdata to give context to the information on your website. At the very least, location information should be up to date and optimized since many mobile voice searches involve “near me” queries. Microdata tags not only help your page get ranked more accurately but have the added benefit of creating “rich snippets” that display additional information on search engine results than traditional results so the people searching for you know without a doubt that your business is what they’re looking for from the get go.

Long gone are the days where people look at you funny when asking your phone questions – voice search is not only on the rise, but continuously evolving. Marketers need to stop thinking only about text-based SEO and add conversational language into their content. Short- and long- tail keywords are shifting into sentences, phrases, and topics, and soon it’ll be a necessity for marketers to get more conversational in their SEO.

To discuss voice search optimization and any other SEO questions, contact your local experts here.

By MassLive Media Marketing Staff

2017-02-24T12:11:20+00:00