Tips for small businesses preparing for voice search


Voice search might seem like something from a science-fiction movie, but we promise you it is real, and it is something that your small business needs to be aware of, and be ready for. SEO analysts predict that in 2020, 20% of all search queries will be done using voice search, and that figure will only continue to rise. 

Voice search and voice-enabled technology give users the ability to search the web with a voice command, rather than typing in a query the old fashioned way. Clearly, this is a convenient and time-saving option that has the ability to change the way that people interact with technology. As is the case with any new technology, if your business doesn’t adjust, you risk losing potential customers or falling behind on productivity. Remember when social media boomed onto the scene, or even further back when websites were the flavour of the minute? If your customers are using voice search, and want to find you, then it is your responsibility to make sure they can. 

That’s why so many businesses are now adjusting their SEO practices to prepare for voice search. If you don’t want to be left behind as voice-technology continues to increase in popularity, now is the time to prepare your small business. 

Formulate a baseline

Maybe you have already been incorporating voice search into your online marketing strategy, or perhaps this is brand new to you. Either way, audit your current progress so that you have a baseline from where you can move forward. This is the time when you should think about keyword phrases, general search terms, and more targeted terms for your voice search catalogue. Brainstorm all terms that are relevant for your business. 

Position zero

In Google, position zero refers to the block of text at the top of the search results page that appears after each query. If you are able to feature in the answer boxes (also known as featured snippets) for relevant voice searches, you will be putting yourself in a very dominant position. To do this, you should make a list of all the related topics for your business and generate a wide range of questions and terms that are pertinent to your business. 

Enter each of these into Google and figure out which ones don’t have a featured snippet box at position zero. These are a prime opportunity to earn position zero real estate on the search screen by creating content relevant to the search. 

Near me searches

For local businesses, ‘near me’ searches can be a crucial part of generating business. When someone asks Siri or Google for a ‘coffee shop’ or a ‘mechanic’ nearby, optimising these searches in your local SEO content will help you to appear when people ask for something relevant to your business locally. Working with an SEO agency might be an efficient way to ensure your content is ready for more voice generated ‘near me’ searches. 

Be relevant

While it can be tempting to create loads of content to get the most extensive reach possible, that isn’t a good use of your resources. Keep your content relevant so that people who want to find you can, and so that your rankings can climb for the most pertinent terms. Don’t try to appeal to everyone. By doing this, you will be rewarded with higher SEO rankings and will gain traction in the right areas. 

Keep it simple

One of the easiest, but often most overlooked ways of getting ready for voice search, is simplifying. Sometimes when we write content, we think that the most flowery and poetic language will generate business. However, this isn’t the case for voice search. You need to switch your strategy to use the same kind of language and phrases that people use when they speak. People expect voice search technology to mishear them, so they will generally use the simplest and most direct question possible when making a voice command or query. 

So, as you move forward creating new content, consider how your voice search focused content might differ and compliment your other written content. 

Voice search summary

There is no denying that voice search is here, and it isn’t going anywhere. Voice technology is becoming more prevalent and more important for a wide range of small businesses as they battle to stay relevant in an increasingly tech-driven market place. Small businesses risk falling behind the competition if they don’t pay attention to this technology now. With some education, planning, and smart strategy, you can implement useful tools and techniques that will ensure voice search works for you well into the future. 

If you are looking for an SEO Melbourne expert that can help your small business be voice search ready, get in touch with our friendly team today.

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