By Liz Slyman
Once a trend reserved for gearheads, voice command software is now a mainstay in American life. A recent study concludes that nearly 50% of smart speaker owners used voice search (20% of voice searches are conducted on a mobile device) and the number of Americans owning a voice assistant is expected to reach 55% by 2022.
What does this mean for the future of content marketing and search engine optimization? Google and other search engines will increasingly favor websites that have optimized their content to meet the growing demand of voice-search-friendly inquiries.
4 Ways to Optimize Your Web Copy for Voice Search
Since the birth of the internet, search engines have always had a singular goal: to earn repeat business by delivering the most reliable, relevant content to its users. This means businesses that do not keep up with technological trends will start to see poor SERPs, fewer leads, and even far less conversions.
Ensure your business is voice search competitive with these four steps:
1. Use a Conversational Tone
Activating a voice assistant involves speaking as if one was speaking to another human being. (think, “Hey Siri” or “Hey Alexa!”). Because of this personalized approach to technology, users have developed a more conversational tone when conducting a voice search. Writing in a less formal manner will mimic user behavior and will make your content more voice-search friendly.
2. Write in a Q&A Format
Along with a conversational tone, most voice search inquiries are in the form of questions. Use this to your advantage by using a question-answer format within your landing pages and blogs. Utilize headers to pose questions and then go in-depth answering those questions in the text that follows.
Let’s look at an example:
Can I Learn Copywriting Online?
Current technology makes learning essential copywriting skills accessible to anyone with an internet connection. There are a myriad of online copywriting courses available, for everyone from beginners to seasoned professionals looking to improve their skills.
The heading of the above paragraph is written as a question in natural, conversational language (like someone would ask a voice assistant) and the subsequent text answers the question posed.
3. Utilize Long-tail Keywords
Contrasting simple search terms, long-tail keywords are more detailed phrases that encompass one or more keywords, and address a more specific inquiry. For example, let’s say you are interested in ranking a recipe blog. The term “Mexican food” is more competitive to rank than “what are the best Mexican recipes for beginners?” The latter search phrase is highly specific, contains multiple keywords, and is written as a question, which makes this phrase even more voice search friendly.
4. Update Your Old Content
If you have content that is currently ranking well, or has ranked well in the past but has plummeted in search results, this content can be revitalized by implementing voice-search SEO tactics. Updated content means relevant content, in the eyes of Google.
If your website has been around for years, combing through hundreds (or thousands) of blog posts and landing pages can be time consuming. Start with your most important content and move backwards, or enlist the help of a copywriting agency to perform an entire content overhaul. The higher-quality your content and the more optimized your website, the better and faster your results.
Voice Optimization: Is it Worth the Effort?
Data indicates the voice search is here to stay, and will only grow and evolve over time. SEO is constantly changing to stay ahead of technological advancements; if you want your website to compete, optimizing for voice search is absolutely, completely essential.
Over the past decade, Liz has worked as a copywriter and digital marketing executive for a multitude of companies from startups to and mid-sized businesses to working as the VP of marketing for award-winning, platinum-selling artists. Leveraging an understanding of the nuance of language in marketing, Liz founded Amplihigher, a content marketing and copywriting agency, designed to connect consumers to companies in a way that results in next-level brand expansion.