Are you ready for voice search in 2018?

Google recently had their 2018 keynote and it was jam-packed full of brand new things and features that they are coming out with. If you haven’t checked it out, they have released a new more updated version of the Google assistant, a new version of Android with more features, Google Duplex, Gmail and Google maps updates, Google lens and Google news.

The key thing that we want to focus on today through the new voice searching capability. Voice search has been something that has been on the rise for the past few years. In all fairness, it all started with Apple’s Siri.

Google has taken the home assistant and google assistant to a whole new world with this new update. If you had watched the keynote or seen any of the highlight videos, you would have seen CEO, Sundar Pichai doing a demonstration of how the Google assistant made a booking at a salon.

Voice search is going to be huge and why not? It is so much easier to just ask your phone to do something then to type it out yourself. “Ok Google wake me up at 6am” is so much easier then to navigate to the clock app and set the alarm yourself.

How people are using voice

The best way to prepare for voice searching is to understand how people are using it in the first place. When you search for something manually on your computer or your phone, you use short phrases or keywords such as “24-hour eateries”. However, when you conduct a search using voice, people use longer, conversational words such as “What eateries are open right now”.

Think about it like texting a friend vs talking to them face to face. If you were to ask your friend out for a drink through text, you might say “Grab a drink after work?” whereas, it would be “Hey do you want to go and grab a drink after work?” when communicating face to face. This is exactly how voice searches defer from text searches.

Question phrases are more likely to be voice searches. Marketers need to identify the types of questions that their audience might be using and create content around that. You could use a tool such as answer the public to find out the types of questions that people might be asking relating to your business.

This is what I got when I searched for the word “photo booth”

Look through this list and create content to ensure that Google assistant or Alexa will pick up on your content to answer queries.

Local SEO

According to Moz, local based queries are 3 times more likely than text searches because of the nature of the queries themselves. With location settings, the Google assistant or Alexa will be able to find out where exactly you are and attempt to provide your information that is related to where you are. Since most search queries are centred around conversational queries that use “Where”, most of the answers that are provided will tap on content that has location-specific terms in them.

Marketers need to include local terms in their content. If your store is located in the Bishan area, you might want to add that to the content that you are putting out. If you have businesses in other countries, you could do the same for specific states.

Things to do now

Marketers need to ensure that their website is ready for structured snippets. It is likely that Google assistant will be taking information from structured snippets to present to voice searchers. Developers can use schema to create pieces of code that Google can use as a structured snippet.

Marketers also need to ensure that their Google My Business account is optimized and also placed in the website as well. This could be placed in the footer of a website so that Google can extract the information from it as well.

Ensure that your website is mobile optimised so that Google will recommend the website directly to the searchers phone. After a voice search is completed, Google will likely send the information to the phones of searchers. You want to make sure that your website is mobile optimised for this to happen.

Whether you are ready or not, Voice search is coming, and marketers need to be ready for the changes. Act now and you can rank high for voice searches as well.

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