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The Evolution of Voice Search: How Does it Affect Your SEO?

By Alex Butz

The Evolution of Voice Search How Does it Affect Your SEO Pinckney Marketing Charlotte NC.png

Alexa – what’s the weather today?

These are often my first spoken words each morning. We have unlimited information, right at the tip of our….fingers? Nope, the tip of our tongues. At least that is the direction we are moving.

In a May 2016 article, it was reported by Google that 20% of all mobile search queries are voice search. Amazing, but not hard to believe.

Technology always seems to creep up on us, and before we know it, we have adopted the new methods. Less than six years ago Apple launched Siri and changed the way we search information forever (granted there were some bugs to work out). As this technology has grown, so has our trust in it. We are more comfortable using voice search devices than ever and they have allowed us to multitask like never before.

What does this evolution mean for businesses? Well, with growing number of voice search devices in our homes, our offices and our pockets, it seems clear that this method of search will only increase as well. Businesses must be mindful of this when they are creating content. Voice searches are different than queries typed into a search bar; we speak differently than we type. Think about it…

A person might type “Beaches North Carolina”; but they would say this entirely different. Voice search often begins with “Who, What, Why, Where, When and How”. The same query using voice search would sound like: “What are the most popular beaches in North Carolina?”

Keywords are classified in two ways: short tail and long tail keywords. The search for “Beaches North Carolina” is an example of a short tail keyword search, while the voice search demonstrates a long tail keyword. The advantage to long tail keywords is they are very specific and include several short tail keywords in one phrase – ultimately increasing your chances to show up on the SERP.

Search engines are also evolving to accommodate how we interact with the Internet. Through the use of long tail keywords, search engines are becoming more proficient in their interpretation of human voice commands and are changing the way they perceive our requests. The increase in the search engines accuracy will help make the connection between the user’s request and your digital content, but it is important to prepare!

Are you prepared for the future?