Voice Engine Optimization: The Key to Driving Local Sales and Offline Traffic

 

 

Earlier today, we teamed up with ClickZ to deliver a webinar on The Voice Revolution – Navigating the Next Generation of Search Marketing. In this webinar, we discussed the impact of voice on local search. By 2020, 50% of all searches will be conducted via voice search and when it comes to mobile search, voice is 3x more likely to be used than text. In order to prepare your brand for the voice search revolution, it’s important to understand how consumers are using voice search.

 

 

How can I optimize my brand for voice search?

Developing a Voice Engine Optimization (VEO) strategy is essential for the success of your brand in a voice-first world. The number of search results given by a device is diminishing as we move towards more convenient search options. Desktop gives 10 results, mobile provides 3, and smart speakers give a single search result. Because of this, the need to optimize your brand for voice is vital.

 

Developing a VEO strategy, or optimizing your brand for voice search really comes down to 5 key things:

1. Keep your listings clean – This is the key to outranking your local competitors since 46% of how search engines rank businesses is dedicated to listing accuracy and optimization.

 

2. Increase focus on longer search queries and questions – Voice search is designed to function as a conversation. According to Google, 41% of people who use voice search say it feels like talking to a friend.

 

3. Increase your site speed – If your website is not mobile-optimized you’re losing out on ranking in the top set of search results.

 

4. Provide answers in order to become a featured snippet 40.7% of all voice search answers come from a featured snippet. By answering the most common customer questions, you can earn a spot as a featured snippet.

 

5. Test it – The only way to truly understand how your customer will interact with voice search is by testing it. Get inside the mind of your customer and go through the voice search process.

 

How are consumers using Voice Search?

 

Consumer habits around voice search are still being understood, that’s why Chatmeter is publishing third-party research on consumer perception and behavior related to voice search. By understanding how consumers use voice search to find local businesses, we can better prepare for the voice search revolution. If you’re not taking steps to rank in the top listing spot, you’re falling behind and your competitors are stealing your customers.

 

Here’s what our research on voice search highlights:

 

  • Convenience is a main draw of voice – 52% of consumers say ease of use is what they like most about voice technology, followed by it being fun and different (23%).
  • Smart devices aren’t yet smart enough –The main issue people have with voice technology is experiencing voice recognition errors (39%) or the technology not being able to understand the question they ask (31%).
  • Fear of the unknown is preventing sales – Those who have never made a purchase via a smart speaker or mobile voice assistant are more likely to be concerned about security and ordering incorrect or duplicate items.

 

 

  • Most consumers engage with or visit nearby businesses after conducting a voice search – Over 2 in 5 consumers use voice search to ask for directions, an address or business hours for a nearby location; 88% of consumers are likely to use driving directions after making a voice search.
  • Successful voice search engine experiences and purchases lead to more frequent mobile voice searches90% of consumers use a voice assistant on their mobile device; those who make purchases via voice device are 30% more likely to use their voice assistant daily.

 

Is your brand prepared for this shift in search? It’s becoming more important than ever to rank in that #1 position. It’s no longer about ranking in the top 10, or even the top 3, if you want to be relevant you need to rank #1. By understanding how and why consumers are utilizing voice search, you’ll be able to establish a strong VEO plan that puts you ahead of your competitors.  

 

Want to learn more about how consumers are adopting voice search?

Download the White Paper

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