Voice search is a modern way of searching for information online, involving voice recognition. It is available on certain digital devices, called voice assistants, that allow a human to ask it questions and be provided answers, at the assistants’ best ability. 

Voice assistants are increasingly becoming popular in households all over the world. According to Bing’s Voice Report, Microsoft predicts that 75% of households will have at least one smart speaker by 2020. It is imperative that businesses and marketing agencies start focusing on the benefits of voice search. Voice assistants are growing in “knowledge” everyday with the use of tools, provided to business owners, online.

Where Does Voice Search Pull Their Data?

The three main voice assistants on the market are Google Assistant, Apple Siri, and Amazon Alexa. (Microsoft’s Cortana was once a voice assistant, but is no longer supported as of January 31, 2020.) These voice assistants grab their information from different business listing tools, including Google My Business, Bing Places, Apple Maps Connect, Yelp, and more. It is important that a business’s information is correct and updated regularly on all three tools.  

Below is a list of these popular personal assistants and the tools they use for their results.

  • Google Assistant
    • Uses Google Search and Wikipedia for general search results.
    • Uses Google My Business for business reviews and imagery.
    • Uses Google My Business for local business information.
  • Apple Siri
    • Uses Amazon Answers, Bing Search, and Wikipedia for general search results.
    • Uses Apple Maps Connect for local business information.
    • Uses Yelp (and other tools) for business reviews and imagery.
  • Amazon Alexa
    • Uses Bing Search for general search results.
    • Uses Yelp and Yext for local business information.
    • Uses Yelp and Yext for business reviews and imagery.
  • Microsoft Cortana (no longer supported)
    • Uses Bing Places for local business information.
    • Uses Yelp (and other tools) for business reviews and imagery.

How Can My Business Improve in Voice Search?

Create Your Business Listings Online and Keep Them Up to Date

As mentioned above, Google My Business, Bing, Apple Maps Connect, Yelp, and more are super important to have setup for your business locations and even more important is the accuracy of the information. Make sure you verify your business locations on these tools and keep them up to date as much as possible to keep customers happy and voice search accurate. 

Use Strategic Keyphrases on Your Website (But Don’t Overdo It!)

One increasingly important way to optimize your website for voice search is by picking strong, long-tail keywords in question form. Let’s think about the way people use voice search. Usually, when someone speaks to a voice assistant, they pose a question. The assistant then searches its database for the best response from information gathered from different websites or tools listed above. Using strategic keyphrases in question-form or other common voice search language on your website helps these assistants find answers for people who are searching with questions. 

While keywords are super important, try not to overindulge in keywords. It’s best for your website to sound human as search engines recognize when there’s an overuse of keywords. 

AnswerThePublic.com is a great resource for finding out what people are searching via voice. Search any topic with this tool and you will find questions or phrases that people commonly search on voice search.

Another tip for keyword strategy is to think locally. Research by BrightLocal shows that about 58% of users search locally. View their full report for even more statistics on how important local search is. Focusing keyphrases into locally-asked questions or phrases will certainly help your chances in improved voice search.

Improve the Page Speed on Your Website 

Page speed is super important when it comes to SEO and voice search. Having a slow website is frustrating to users as well as voice assistants.

PageSpeed Insights is a great tool Google provides for free that allows you to analyze your website’s speed and provides diagnostics to give you an idea of what could be improved.

Structured Data

Structured data should be used on your website to help search engines and voice assistants understand your site’s content. Whenever you are improving your site for search engines, you’re also improving it for voice search. 

Encourage Online Reviews 

We like to suggest to businesses to encourage reviews from their consumers. As long as you have a good representative for your business and are responsive, even bad reviews can be healthy and provide you an opportunity to show the public that your business has good customer service and integrity. But, in time, using these reviews to improve your business could certainly lead to better trust and better reviews.

Since many assistants grab reviews online from Yelp, Yext, and other places, the reviews are very important. The assistants do consider your reviews so it’s important to always prove to your consumers how reliable and trustworthy your business is.

Is Voice Search Optimization Relevant in Healthcare?

Most definitely. The healthcare field is always growing and evolving. Being proactive in marketing for voice search will surely make your business stand out. The more people that hear information provided by your business will not only help your business name grow, but it also has the opportunity to become more reputable to the general public. 

Lenz keeps up-to-date with the latest news in voice search optimization. We are constantly learning and the latest marketing strategies are something we are passionate about. We would love to team up with your healthcare business to improve voice search so reach out to Lenz today

References and Resources