According to a forecast from Gartner, 30% of all website browsing and surfing sessions will be managed and performed without a screen. And, 50% of all web searches will consist of voice searches by 2020. You might be asking yourself- how will that disrupt the Search Technology?
It seems that in the years to come, voice-only search will enable users to browse the web and consumer information without having to scroll up and down through the websites on desktops, even mobile devices. Voice Search is likely to turn out to be crucial for successful brands in the future.
The way people search for information online is changing rapidly. People are using voice search on their smartphones, tablets and voice assistant devices to search for the required information on the internet. For instance, Siri is your pal if you are using an Apple device, Google voice search is popular on the Android devices and Microsoft’s Cortana is pretty useful on your PC as well as your smartphones.
What is Voice Search Anyway?
Voice search primarily enables users to get search results through voice-input via devices instead of typing in the search bar to get desired results. Here, the audio technology comes into play that uses speech recognition to understand what users are saying with accurate interpretation. Ultimately, it provides results orally to the user. Though it might seem like a brand-new concept, programs like speech-to-text and voice dialing have been around for a while.
The Shifting User Engagement
As technology continues to evolve, people are continuously changing the way they interact with the internet to find answers to their queries. The primary virtual assistants on the market today include Siri, Google Assistant, Alexa, and Cortana. Engineers and industry leaders have shown the desire for online searchers to use voice search queries with the evolution of technology. Online users interact with the search engines using the voice search both directly and through virtual assistants.
US Smart Phone Users (according to age) using Mobile Personal Assistants
This rapid adoption of voice search cannot be overshadowed for SEO marketing professionals who want to enhance their online presence. According to a report by ComScore, more than half of all smartphone users interacted with voice search in 2020.
Voice Search Poised to Change the SEO Game
Voice search works on the principle of artificial intelligence technology, which actually fills the void left by humans when asking for any kind of information or query. Simply put, virtual assistants like Google Home, Siri, etc. do not just listen what we say, but also that we do not say. Therefore, there are several omissions that become difficult for robots to understand and perceive. And the process becomes complex when queries are made in a series of questions. For instance, which clothing store is closest to you, by what time will it remain open, which means of transport is the quickest to reach there? Well for us, this series of questions would be a cookie cutter to understand and answer the queries. But when it comes to artificial intelligence system; Big Data, Machine Learning and other technologies come to the fore. Somewhere or the other, Google voice search and SEO are related. How? Today, AMAZON, Google and other giant companies developing this voice search technology are linked to e-commerce. What did Jeff Bezos do? He launched Amazon Echo to boost sales in his marketplace through voice search technology. And this is one of the many examples that show the voice search technology is e-commerce oriented and is all set to change the rules of the game.
Talking about businesses, voice search traffic offers an amazing opportunity because algorithms are being constantly updated to enable this kind of search. Marketing teams are already implementing various SEO strategies for voice searches. But before that let us find out why voice search will outshine written searches in the next decade?
How is Voice Search Disrupting Search Queries Around the Globe?
- The primary reason for growing popularity of voice searches is the enhanced user experience. Well, we are fortunate to have virtual assistants; queries are being answered quickly, comfortably and efficiently.
- 4 out of 10 users using voice search devices or digital assistants say that they are talking to a friend or family member, says Google. And companies like Walmart and Amazon will not miss this golden opportunity and will allow customers enjoy browsing products by voice and fill their shopping carts.
- According to an eMarketer study, more than one-third of the US population (111.8 million people) use a voice assistant monthly in 2019, up 9.5% from 2018. And, The number of US voice assistant users will reach 122.7 million by 2021. Thus, voice search adapting to new generations will require urgent optimization of SEO campaigns.
The Impact of Voice Search on SEO Rankings
Voice search substantially enhances user experience. It’s the plentiful utilization of voice search that giant search engines like Google are placing more weightage on for Voice Search Optimization (VSO).
When it comes to SEO, it all boils down to ranking the websites accurately so that users can come across the best information for their search query as quickly as possible. Ultimately, it is the user experience that needs to be better, and excellent at SEO front lines.
By January 2018, an average of about 1 billion voice searches were found every month, proving that voice search is at a strong up-trend. However, one must know that voice search optimization and traditional website SEO are completely different. Existing SEO factors might or might not have the same effect on voice search SEO and vice versa.
Why is Voice Search Growing Quickly?
Well, there is a lot of driving this trend. Here they go:
- Obviously, people want to have quick answers without even typing
- Voice is much faster than typing
- Smart speakers and digital voice assistants are being increasingly used, with voice being the interface
- Voice search is perfect for mobile searches and mobile use in general.
All the above trends altogether put up a future picture where we all can talk to our computers and smartphones more than we actually type on them. Therefore, investing in voice search optimization is a well-defined and proven way to enhance brand awareness, online purchases and eventually, the revenue.