It is still in its infancy, for the most part, but voice search has been taking off recently in a really big way.
The tech may not be brand new, but if you're familiar with the history and information science underlying computer voice recognition, it's astounding.
And today, it's not only been more or less perfected, but it's becoming truly commonplace.
In 2016, voice search usage was up 35% from 2008, which was around the time that things like Siri and Google were really starting to take off.
As of early 2017, 41% of people using voice search had started using that feature within just the previous six months.
So right now, voice search is in a growth period.
For smart marketers, this is a great opportunity to “get in while the getting's good” and gain a first mover advantage in the growing voice search landscape.
But how do you actually go about optimizing for searches conducted through voice alone?
Historically, SEO has revolved around text.
In a recent blog post, Brian Dean of Backlinko explains how you can start optimizing for voice search today, giving yourself an edge against your competition.
How to Optimize for Voice Search
Voice search is still super duper early.
Even so, there are a few things we DO know about how voice search works… and how to optimize for it.
1. First, your content needs to be on the first page.
Kinda obvious, but it’s worth pointing out.
2. Next, it helps A LOT if your content appears in a Featured Snippet, like this:
[image source: Backlinko]
Google’s algorithm has already put together a convenient little snippet.
And from my testing, Google voice search (especially Google Home) tends to spit out the text inside of the Featured Snippet.
3. Finally, include a question (and answer) in your content.
The vast majority of voice searches are question based (“How do I do a pullup?” or “Who starred in Shawshank Redemption”?).
When that happens, Google usually picks a page that contains a) the question and b) the answer.
[image source: Backlinko]
Just what Google’s voice search algorithm wants to see.
You can find more great advice on contemporary SEO best practices in SEO for 2018: The Definitive Guide, a brand new guide from Backlinko.
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