How to Optimize for Voice Search in 2020


Voice search optimization has become more important than ever. Voice search is gaining popularity because it’s easier to speak than to type. 

50% of all searches will be voice search by 2020 and to stay on top of your industry you need to optimize your website for voice search. 

Let’s have a look at how you can optimize for voice search. 

1. Optimize Your Website For Mobile

Optimizing your website for mobile has become more important than ever. Most of the voice searches happen on mobile. Having a mobile-friendly website also boosts your SEO. 

Few things that you can do to optimize your website for mobile include:

  • Keep your home page clear and concise. 
  • Include a search bar for easy navigation
  • Keep important features consistent across the site (menu options, back-to-home screen, search bar, etc.)
  • Keep the font size readable and large
  • Display only the information and links necessary for performing the website’s fundamental task

Make sure that your website loads quickly on mobile devices. You can test your page on PageSpeed Insights or GTmetrix to gather details on your page load speed. You will also find a list containing a few possible optimizations to enhance your website’s performance on mobile devices. 

2. Optimize for Question-Based Keywords

Question-based keywords include “how-to”, “why”, “when”, “where”, etc. Most voice searches start with question phrases such as who, why, how, etc. Therefore, it is important to figure out the way your audience speaks when searching for your business or products. 

Besides, voice searches are more conversational and are longer than text-based searches. In order to rank on the top of SERPs for voice searches, you need to use more long-tail keywords. 

You can use tools like Answer the Public or Buzzsumo’s Question Analyzer to find the voice search keywords and optimize your content around them. For example, this resource is optimized for “how-to” searches while this resource is optimized for “why” based searches. 

3. Make Use of VPN 

Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) can benefit you in many ways. With a VPN you can:

  • Hide your strategies from your competitors
  • Protect your sensitive data from leaking
  • View organic search engine result pages from around the world

The ability to view genuine SERPs from around the world gives you the opportunity to understand how different people are using voice search in different places.

Moreover, a VPN also allows you to keep an eye on your competitor’s strategies while keeping you anonymous. There are various VPNs for Mac that you can use to stay ahead of your competitors. 

4. Avoid Using Jargons in Your Content

As mentioned above, people use a more natural and conversational language when doing voice searches. This means your content must first match with the search term in order to appear on the top of SERPs. 

A study by Backlinko found out that the average Google voice search result is written in a way that even a 9th-grade student can understand. The simpler your language is, the higher the chances of your content coming up on voice search results. 

Check for your content’s readability on tools like The Hemingway App. All you need to do is paste your content on the app to get its readability level and helpful tips to improve it. 

5. Optimize for Featured Snippets

Featured snippets are selected results that appear on the top of a SERP that contains a summary of the content from the page and provides users with a concise and direct answer to their questions. 

Optimizing your website for featured snippets can help you rank in voice search. In fact, 40.7% of all voice search answers come from featured snippets.

Follow these steps to optimize your content for featured snippets.

  • Include a question in the heading/sub-heading
  • Answer the question in 30-40 words
  • Use visually-appealing images
  • Make sure one blog post answers multiple similar questions
  • Organize your content in a step-by-step format
  • Ensure that your content is well-structured and well-researched

You can use tools like SEMRush to track and monitor featured snippets. It also provides you the opportunity to identify the featured snippets you’re well-positioned to get. 

6. Create Question-Based FAQ Pages

As mentioned above, question-based searches are on the rise and the average voice search result contains only 29 words. FAQ pages meet both conditions. 

This is why creating FAQ pages that answers as many questions as possible is important. Also, voice search results (2.68%) are 1.7x more likely to come from a FAQ page compared to desktop results (1.54%). 

Additionally, you can incorporate high-performing keywords when answering questions on your FAQ page to further improve the chances of getting on top of the SERPs. 

7. Optimize Your Google My Business Listing

Mobile voice searches are 3x more likely to be local-based searches than text searches. Therefore, it is important to optimize your Google My Business listing around terms that voice searchers use.

Also, share your business location information on your site’s footer. Because there are two ways a user can search for local businesses.

  • Mobile phone store near me: For this type of query, Google checks the user’s location and turns toward GMB to deliver relevant answers. 
  • Mobile phone store in California: For this type of query, Google relies on local keywords to deliver relevant answers. 

Ensure that the NAP (Name, address, and phone number) of your business in GMB is accurate and maintain consistency when uploading your business details on other local directories. 

Final Thoughts

With the increase in the number of voice searches, the importance of voice search optimization is also increasing. Start with making your website mobile-friendly and incorporate question-based keywords in your content. 

Also, try to use simple and clear language when creating content to rank higher in voice search results. Optimizing for featured snippets will also increase your chances of appearing on the top of voice search results.

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