Voice Search: end of SEO or new challenge?
With Jelly bean latest version (4.2) freshly released, android is now fighting back apple’s features for features, including SIRI on the voice search market. An increased competition brings better features and increased uptake rate. That said will this bring SEO out of business?
The end of SEO
Voice Search bypasses All principles of our standard desktop search engine result pages.
Despite in its early stages of adoption, 87% of iPhone 4s / 5 use SIRI at least once a month. Original source: Mashable infographic
This stat doesn’t tell us much about the actual total query volume per month But certainly indicates a clear uptake of the product.
So goodbye the 10 blue links. Users will be given A result and that’s it. Reducing the SEO work of many SEOs to only the best option.
Adversity, change, tougher and tougher competition is a daily dose for any SEO (IMHO that what make it so much more interesting)
How to optimise for SIRI and Voice Search
- Develop a mobile optimised site
A mobile site really helps your business to get good visibility on mobile SEO. This should already be your #1 priority.
Note – changing the look of site (CSS) to make it more readable on a smartphone doesn’t actually make it mobile friendly. It just hide a whole bunch of items but still have them loaded when customer is viewing the page. Connection and load time being crucial in mobile SEO, if your site requires a lot of resources for non essential items, consider creating an independant site for mobile
- Create a Mobile Sitemap
As part of the above, don’t forget to create a sitemap with the mobile version in it. See Google’s info on that
- Rich Snippets and Schema Tags
Schema.org uses a specific web code (markup language) to structure specific information about your business and make that data more accessible and more easily consumed by search engines.
Those rich snippets include author address, phone number, information, operating hours, and much much more.A highly structured format makes it a lot easier for search engines to make a decision based on your data.
- Long Tail targeting
Long Tail Keywords are popular with Voice Search. We are still in the early stages of voice search. Already, the length of Siri queries tend to be longer as users are searching in natural speach rather than typing on keyboards or small android/iphone touchscreens.
Result = long-tail and highly targeted searches. Optimizing for long-tail means better semantic work to include relevant phrases or directly specific landing pages.
- Linkbuilding and anchor text
Google is becomming even more focused on natural-looking anchor text profiles. Not only is this a saftey-first method, but it’s also more efficient. Flexible anchor text (anchor text with the keyword integrated here and there, but also broadly varied) is more efficent in increasing rankings, including for high-volume terms.
For Voice Search, the efforts you make to naturalize and get the most out of your link profile will also help you rank for long-tail searches.
Get Online Customer reviews. Getting reviews for your business never hurts (except of course if you suck at what you do). The quality and number of reviews are affecting SIRI, Voice and local search. Get in touch with your customers today and get more reviews.
Note – Yelp 25M reviews have been added to SIRI’s search results
- Submit to local directories
Note – it is best to keep a certain consistency as SIRI like other local search activity cross reference mutliple local business directories in order to pick the best one.
- Purchase premium version of Yelp (unknown)
Disclaimer – I am not sure about this method. Experts in the mobile SEO field have seen improvement on SIRI search from switching to premium profile. I think it’s logical thanks to a greater exposure/content/presence on yelp