Voice search functionality is growing rapidly and companies are taking advantage of voice search in ecommerce to capture a larger segment of mobile and AI device users.
In fact, many people are using voice search for ecommerce rather than typing to query search engines. As a result, SEO tactics that once worked so well for traditional websites may no longer be as effective.
Voice search is also different from traditional search engine queries because users typically speak general terms instead of specific keywords and phrases with the intention of finding a product or brand.
This article covers what you need to know about how voice search impacts SEO in e-commerce and why it’s so different from traditional searching. It also explains some of the best practices you can use to optimize your e-commerce website to rank higher in voice searches.
What is Voice Search?
Voice search happens when a user speaks their query instead of typing it. There are several different ways this can happen. For example, you might use a virtual assistant or smart speaker like the Amazon Echo to speak your query. You might also use your phone’s voice search function to type your query out (or speech-to-text if your device has that capability).
No matter which device you’re using, ecommerce voice search lets you find information and products faster and easier than typing. That’s because voice search doesn’t require you to type your query, which can be more tiring and more prone to errors. Instead, you can just use your voice to speak your query and get results back immediately.
Why is Voice Search Different?
The biggest difference between voice search and traditional search engine queries is that users are usually more general when they use their voice. That’s because they’re speaking, often while they’re doing something else, so they don’t have time to think about a specific keyword to use. Instead, they’re just trying to find whatever products and brands are relevant.
For example, if you type “baseball gloves” into a search engine, you’re likely to get results for baseball gloves. But if you speak, “baseball gloves for kids,” you’re more likely to get results for baseball gloves for youth baseball players of all ages.
“Near Me” searches are also common with voice search. In these types of searches, people speak a phrase to find nearby restaurants and other items. Optimizing your eCommerce business for voice search, even if you don’t have stores near your customers, can help you rank high among near me searches.
This is because you may be the highest ranked vendor of a product or service that can deliver to that area, not just having a store there. The popularity of near me searches and voice searches in general is increasing, so you should try to take advantage of the boost in SEO as soon as possible.
How Does Voice Search Impact SEO?
Traditional SEO involves using specific keywords and phrases to attract targeted search traffic. Voice search refers to broad categories of products as well as specific products or brands that users are looking for.
For example, a user might say “find me an electric toothbrush” instead of “find me a Philips Sonicare toothbrush.” This can impact how you optimize your e-commerce website for SEO.
Strategies for Optimizing Your Site for Voice Searches
While voice search is a newer form of searching, there are some basics you can apply to optimize your site for voice search. These include typical SEO practices like writing long-form content, using relevant and high-quality images, and making sure your site loads quickly. Beyond that, here are some other ways you can optimize your site for voice search:
1. Create a Voice-Friendly Site
Voice searches are different because they’re typically casual requests made while the user is doing something else. As a result, it can be hard to understand the searcher’s intent and what they’re looking for. Creating a voice-friendly site with content that’s relevant to your audience can make it easier for searchers to find what they want on your site.
2. Create a Voice-Friendly Content Strategy
The content you create on your site can help improve your rankings for voice searches. If you have long-form text content, it usually ranks higher than shorter content in voice searches. That’s because voice search users typically want more information from their searches, so they’ll usually click through to other pages on the site.
3. Optimize Your Site for Mobile Voice Searches
Voice search users usually search from their phones, but mobile voice searches are different from traditional mobile searches. Speech-to-text technology can also be used to do voice searches on any device (like Siri or Alexa), so you’ll still want to optimize your site for scrolling and touch navigation to make it easier for users to find and buy your products.
4. Don’t Overwhelm Voice Search Results
Voice search results pages provide users with a lot more information than traditional search engine results. Some people will be more interested in page titles, images, and navigation than they are in search terms. You’ll want to consider the searcher’s intent and how you can use your site to match it.
Things to Keep In Mind When Optimizing for Voice Search
Making adjustments to improve voice search results is important, but you don’t want to undo all of the work that you did to improve traditional SEO. Here are a few things to keep in mind when trying to optimize for voice search.
Keywords Are Still Important
Keywords are still important, but you’ll probably want to focus on long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are more specific, which makes them a better fit for voice search. You’ll also want to consider synonyms and related terms. That’s because users are likely to use both when speaking.
Beyond that, some experts suggest you also include your brand name in the keywords you use on your site. That’s because people may speak your brand name as a way to search for you.
Readability is Also a Big Deal for Voice Searches
Because people using voice searches are typically more general, they’re also more likely to read your content. That means you need to make sure your content is easy to read.
At the same time, you don’t want to use lengthy sentences that are hard to understand because people using voice search aren’t reading as closely as readers on your website do. That means you need to be concise in your writing and use short, simple sentences to make it easy for readers to get through your content.
SEO Strategies for eCommerce With Voice Search
With the basics out of the way, let’s get into some of the specific ways you can optimize your e-commerce site for voice search. The strategies below can help you rank higher in voice searches and boost your sales with voice search functionality.
Make Your Product Titles and Descriptions More General
Remember, when people use voice search, they’re usually more general. As a result, you want to make sure your product titles, subtitles, and descriptions are general enough to be relevant for a variety of different people.
Include Your Brand Name in Your SEO Efforts
In addition to using general keywords and long-tail keywords, you may want to consider using your brand name in your SEO efforts. After all, your brand name is likely to be something people use when speaking a query. And some people may also speak your brand name with the intention of finding you.
Get Help Setting Up Your Business for Voice Search
Optimizing for any type of SEO takes a lot of effort. Make the process easier by partnering with a company that knows the ins and outs of SEO. At KitelyTech, we work with companies to maximize their SEO returns. Call us at (800) 274-2908 to schedule a consultation.