Kris Nicolaou - Web Strategist - Founder and CEO of Brain Box
Kris Nicolaou

How Do You Make a Voice Search Friendly Website?

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It is estimated that people will be using their voice to search online just as much as they do manual entry by 2020

It is estimated that people will be using their voice to search online just as much as they do manual entry by 2020. Infact, 50 percent of online searches will be done through voice search. Voice is actively on the rise as the search mechanism of the modern era, and IoT devices like smartwatches and home devices are steadily climbing in cultural popularity.

Just as website owners had to re-optimize their websites to be mobile-friendly with the mobile phone becoming the primary way people were browsing the internet, voice-searching is going to require the same thing. How consumers are using their trusty search engines has changed, and accommodating those changes is going to be the only way to stay afloat. When getting custom website development, here are a few tips for creating a voice search friendly website.

1. Make sure your business is listed online, especially if it's local.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make in the voice-search era is to not make sure your local business is actually registered online as a business. Business listings get priority in search results listings for a few reasons. For one, Google assumes these are the most logical places a searcher would be looking to find. Secondly, available space on things like wearable tech screens is limited, so only registered business listings are going to be given.

If you are using something like Siri or Google Assistant to search for a local business, their replies are meant to be direct, short, and sweet, which means replies to questions about a local business are going to involve actual registered businesses. Getting your business registered is not a difficult thing, and it is something that must be done if you want a voice search friendly website

2. Create a voice search friendly website by reducing website loading time.

If you were not aware that page-loading speed affects your search engine ranking, your traffic may be suffering already. However, as voice searching becomes even more prevalent, a slow-loading website can severely compromise your traffic flow numbers.

According to a Backlinkto study, website page loading time appears quite important to Google. Slower loading websites get pushed down lower on the results listings. A few things you can do to make sure your website pages load quicker include:

  • Optimizing any images you use on your website pages
  • Using a content delivery network to generate high-availability and higher performance of the content
  • Minimizing things like JavaScript and HTML on website pages

The quicker your pages load, the more Google will recognize them as worthy, so do what you have to so your website is not slow and cumbersome to load.

3. Implement long-tail SEO keywords in your website content.

Spoken searches are a bit different from written ones in a big way. People may not take the time to add all those extra words if they are typing in a search query, but when they are speaking the query, they will often say more because it's simple to speak it.

For example, traditional SEO keywords for a dog-walking service may have been dog walker Manhattan because that is likely what someone would type. If someone were searching for a dog walker in NYC by voice, they may go as far as searching: Where is the dog walker closest to me in Manhattan?

Implementing long-tail SEO keywords can also help land you with those featured snippets on Google that every website owner wishes to gain. But, the process of implementing this strategy must be site-wide and done properly.

4. Incorporate locally relevant content on your website.

You don't necessarily have to be a local business to incorporate locally relevant content on your web pages. And the process will do you a lot of good when you are trying to stay in-tune with the voice-search world. Roughly 22 percent of voice searching is for local content, according to an infographic posted on LinkedIn from KPCB Internet Trends.

Incorporating locally relevant content is as easy as providing some local information on your website pages or doing a few write-ups on your bog. Just a few incorporations can garner you some extra traffic from certain consumers.

5. Take advantage of structured data markup to drive traffic.

Structured data markup is the process of making pertinent details available on search results pages instead of requiring an internet user to go to pages to get what they need. If your website is optimized with structured data that can be used for this purpose, it automatically gets ranked higher in search results.

For instance, if someone gets on their mobile device and asks Siri to search for the menu of a local restaurant, those details can be displayed on the search results page. Google actually has a Structured Data Markup tool that you can use for your own website as a business owner to try to achieve better optimization.

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