Voice Search is Trending Up

As we as consumers seek more and more convenience and instant response, often we opt to rely on the more convenient source of information available as the authority source.  When using voice enabled devices such as mobile phones and internet enabled virtual devices, we interact as if we are having a conversation with a real person.  The conversation is like a Q&A interview and most often the answers are a single result, the result the device (the search algorithm behind the device) determines as the single best response.   The conversation is the key distinction in how these devices are changing the way in which marketers need to think to about their website content and how to capitalize on the rise of devices that act like mobile.

See Siri Told Me to Call You and Internet Devices that Act Like Mobile for the first two articles in this 3 part series.

Implications for Digital Marketers

If the method of search is different, meaning the search query is different, this in turn means there is an opportunity for digital marketers to offer up content that is more appealing to the search.  As mentioned above, the interaction with the device is more conversational and the request for information is typically a question, as compared to the common keyboard search phrase of several words.  This suggests that matching content will be best suited as an answer to that question, with the question contained in the answer.  As a digital marketer, the challenge will be to identify the questions that your website should be positioned to answer.  Hint: Some of these questions are already found in your Google Analytics data.

A New Search Scenario

Imagine it’s the weekend and a group of adventurous friends are gathered at one friends house, reliving past adventures, and planning for their next.  Dave calls out, “Hey Google, what is the top rated outdoor adventure company in Saskatchewan?’  Google answers, “ABC Outfitters has a Google rating of 4.9 and is located in Anywhere, Saskatchewan.” Dave replies, “Hey Google, call ABC Outfitters.”

Here are a few important points about this scenario.  First, it’s already happening.  Second, the search query, the question, was answered with a single response.  There were no alternatives.  Third, the action lead directly to a contact with the outfitter.  Lastly, the searcher never actually touched or viewed the website.

Beyond Mobile Friendly

For digital marketers, we need to start to think beyond just mobile friendly website design (responsive websites) to also consider mobile friendly and voice search friendly content.  A mobile friendly website is a must, otherwise you are losing positions in the Google mobile index, which is now searched more often than desktop.  But this is now just step one.

Using the free combination of Google Search Console and Google Analytics, we can dig into the history of searches that brought visitors to our website and determine which are more qualified and use this to optimize for more search traffic of this type.  That means an investment in time, and investment in data, an investment in analytics.