Remember the early days of social media? It was the mid-2000s, and digital marketers were still bogged down in SEO strategies that would make us shiver today. It was the time when article directories were big and keyword stuffing actually worked. All these strategies worked well up until 2007 and 2008, but social media, with Facebook and Twitter as market leaders, quickly changed things. Search engines redesigned their algorithms and started embracing the power of the like and share button. Everyone knows what happened next: marketing campaigns had to be completely overhauled and marketers were back to their drawing boards.
Now, roughly 10 years later from that moment, voice search is expected to change how we see digital marketing from the ground up. Will the change be as dramatic as it was in 2007 and 2008? It’s difficult to say, but there are a lot of signs that marketing campaigns will have to adapt to the new technology. One thing is for sure: search engine optimization will never be the same after voice search.
The history of voice search is quite short. Voice commands were launched sometime in the early 2000s, but they were difficult to use, their software was horribly inaccurate, with downright ridiculous interpretation errors. The technology evolved and, just 5 years ago, you could find voice command on your smartphone. However, voice command was far from being actually usable and relevant – it was a mere curiosity on your device; yes, you had it, but never thought about using it.
Today, experts suggest that this previously curious technology is about to take the SEO world by storm. This is especially true if Google, the most popular search engine, implements it in the next foreseeable future.
But why? Why would people prefer voice search over “typed search”? The answer is simple: voice search will be natural, people will search exactly what they “have in mind” and they will be able to “speak it”. Also, people love to get direct answers to questions, not cold links written in blue font.
The statistics also show us how important voice search will be in the future: by the end of 2017, almost 33 million voice-first mobile devices will be in circulation. Also, according to a recent survey done by Stone Temple, out of 914 respondents, 50 percent would use voice search daily, while 25 percent would be be comfortable using it in front of coworkers.
How will voice search change digital marketing?
As voice search becomes increasingly common, digital marketing strategies will definitely change. It will change how we do SEO and how we look at SERPs.
- voice search thinks differently
- instead of focusing on simple words or short phrases, digital marketers will have to focus on long phrases. The queries will be more conversational, asked in a more friendly manner, exactly the same we speak to a sibling.
- keywords will change
- short, dry keywords will be obsolete; voice search will focus on very long tail keywords, entire sentences with multiple meanings and subtleties
- content will be more human
- content will have to change – voice search will love more “human content”, written in a conversational tone
Mobile voice search
Most of voice search will done on mobile devices. Google is already expected to implement a mobile first index, so these two technologies will work great together. Users who use mobile voice search are three times more likely to look for a local business. So, if you are a local business and your website is ready, you have a HUGE growth in traffic.
A lot of people will use voice search to research specific products, so you’ll have to adapt your website to cater for their needs. Product descriptions, reviews and testimonials have to written in a conversational tone, that helps customers make a better decision.
What does the future hold for voice search?
According to a recent study, 50 percent of all searches will be done via voice search by 2020. This figure is massive, and it shows how important is stepping up your voice-search website implementation. There’s no secret, it’s time to prepare for the future. Google has just launched Google for Jobs, where voice search is active and quite popular. Similarly, voice search is getting popular for B2C queries.