What effects do Voice Search and Voice Services have on your online marketing?

At the latest since our digital assistants Siri and Alexa accompany us through everyday life, Voice Search and Voice Services have arrived in our everyday lives. The basis of all these technologies is artificial intelligence. We explained in our last blog post that artificial intelligence has a considerable influence on marketing. What is really amazing, however, is the fact that a machine manages to imitate the human voice so skilfully and to learn from experience that we can have a seemingly real conversation on the phone with this machine. And because we find this very impressive and assume that this trend will shape the future of marketing considerably, we will take a closer look today at what is already possible thanks to Voice Search and Voice Services and how it will change online marketing.

OK Google, what is Voice Search?

Google Suche mit den Suchergebnissen zu Voice Search

 

Voice Search means that a web search is no longer done by text search based on the keyword input, but by using the spoken word – or even whole sentences. Voice Search is therefore more convenient and faster than typing in search queries – especially on mobile devices with small keyboards. As early as 2016, Google confirmed that over 50% of searches are carried out via mobile phones and more than one in five of them via voice input.[1] This makes it clear that the topic of voice search will become considerably more relevant.

Many of us ask their questions by calling „OK Google“ or „Hey Siri“ on their mobile phones as a matter of course. Google and Siri provide us with answers such as whether we should take an umbrella to work tomorrow or when we need to get up to make it to the office on time. While a few years ago, after several misunderstandings on the part of Google & Co., some people switched back to text searches, the error rate is now only around 8% – despite dialect or loud ambient noises.[2] This suggests that the number of people talking with their smartphone will increase.

 

Sprachassistent Alexa

 

Hey Siri, who is Alexa anyway?

In addition to Voice Search, there are also so-called Voice Services, such as Alexa. Alexa is the digital language assistant of the loudspeaker Amazon Echo. Alexa plays our favorite audiobook on call, she orders our dinner and the exciting thing is, she learns every day. Numerous companies have already developed voice-based applications – the so-called skills – for Alexa. Especially large companies like Berliner Verkehrsbetriebe (BVG) and Techniker Krankenkasse rely on this voice service. With the help of Alexa you can easily find the nearest subway to Alexanderplatz or treat yourself to a relaxing break from stressful everyday life thanks to the TK Smart Relax Skills – from meditations to progressive muscle relaxation to yoga, the health insurance company has a lot to offer.
But Alexa skills are also attractive for delivery services and companies that handle transactions, as they can greatly simplify the lives of users.

The following chart shows what language assistants are currently used for most:

Statistik zu den Anwendungsbereichen für Sprachassistenten

it becomes clear that language assistants are currently mainly used for language searches. In other words, to quickly and easily obtain information on a specific topic. The number of customers who fill their refrigerators with the help of a language assistant, on the other hand, is still comparatively small. For you as a company, this means that you can focus specifically on voice search and search engine optimization.The search results will continue to be displayed in the search results.

Voice Search and SEO

While many users are excited about the benefits of voice-controlled web search, many marketers are wondering what effect Voice Search has on search engine optimization. If individual words are used for the search when typing, users formulate entire sentences or ask complete questions when searching for speech. For SEO, this means that you should rather optimize your search for long tail queries, i.e. search queries consisting of several words. Thus, SEO will change significantly with an increasing number of language searches. Search queries such as „Indian Restaurant Hamburg“ will turn into queries such as „Which is the best Indian restaurant in Hamburg? On the one hand, speech recognition has the task of understanding the meaning of the sentence on the basis of the spoken words and, on the other hand, of recognizing relationships between the individual words and their interrelationships.

So in the future it will not be enough to include keywords in a certain density when writing an SEO text. Rather, you should consider in advance which questions your customers and users will have on a particular topic. Provide answers – and please formulate them clearly and comprehensibly, because Google will reward you with a good position in the search results. These previously considered questions can also be taken up in the headline. Because also further on the headings in the Google Ranking are attached particularly high importance. The same applies to your meta data and your URL. Simply integrate the relevant questions for your customers and website visitors directly and bear in mind that these are mostly classic „W“ questions – why, why, why, who, where, how, etc. You can easily find out which questions are most relevant to your customers by asking them. For example, social media offers tools that help you easily find out what moves your customers. And you already have the possible questions for your search engine optimized texts. And if you find that certain questions keep coming up, then add them to your FAQ page. You don’t have FAQs on your website yet? Then this would be worth considering, because this saves you the tedious task of answering the same questions and Google is also happy about it.

Another change in user behavior that you should consider when optimizing for search engines is listening to the answer instead of reading it. While users click their way through the search engine’s hit list during a text search, they don’t even look at their screen during a voice search. Only a search result is read out here. You already know what this means for you as a company. So it’s no longer a matter of long, extensive research on the part of the users, but of a quick and precise answer – and not several.

Conclusion

The classic text search will increasingly be replaced by the language search. Voice search and voice services will also become increasingly popular in other areas of everyday life. For companies, this means, among other things, that search engine optimization will also change. We will explain to you next week how you can optimize your own website in this respect. For now, we recommend: Get to know your customers and website visitors even better, find out what is bothering them, optimize for long tail requests and be prepared for the ever-increasing spread of voice search and voice services.

 

 

[1] https://youtu.be/862r3XS2YB0

[2] https://karlkratz.de/onlinemarketing-blog/digitale-assistenten-sprachsuche/