The most important ranking factors for voice search include content relevance and quality, featured snippets, website speed and mobile optimization, local SEO, schema markup, natural language, conversational tone, and authority and trustworthiness. These factors determine the visibility and rankings of websites in voice search results.
What’s Important When it Comes to Voice Search?
In the realm of digital marketing, voice search has become a buzzworthy topic. This rapidly growing trend in SEO has captured the attention of marketers as more and more individuals rely on voice-activated devices such as smartphones and smart speakers like Google Home to access the information they need. With its hands-free convenience and user-friendly interface, voice search presents both opportunities and implications for marketers.
To develop effective marketing strategies, it is crucial for you and your marketing team to gain a deep understanding of the factors that drive rankings in voice search. As the popularity of voice search continues to soar, it has become clear that this format is here to stay. Therefore, embracing and adapting to this trend is essential for staying ahead of the competition and maximizing your bottom line.
Optimizing your company’s website for voice search requires a different approach than traditional SEO. The criteria for ranking in voice search differ from those for text-based search queries. To ensure that your site remains competitive and discoverable by potential customers, it is vital to comprehend the most important ranking factors for voice search.
When it comes to voice search optimization, a few key factors have been identified as significant contributors to search rankings. Understanding and implementing these factors can greatly enhance your website’s visibility and increase the chances of being found by voice search users. Some crucial ranking factors to consider include the following:
- Featured Snippets: Crafting content that can be displayed as a featured snippet helps your website earn prominence in voice search results. Voice assistants often rely on featured snippets to provide concise and direct answers to user queries.
- Mobile Optimization: Given that voice searches are predominantly performed on mobile devices, having a mobile-friendly website with fast load times is crucial. Mobile optimization ensures that users can access your content seamlessly and enjoy a smooth browsing experience.
- Natural Language and Conversational Tone: Voice search queries tend to be more conversational and resemble spoken language. Optimizing your content to match this style helps search engines better understand and interpret your website’s relevance to voice search queries.
- Local SEO: Voice searches often have local intent, making local search optimization an essential aspect of voice search strategy. Optimizing your website for local SEO increases the likelihood of appearing in voice search results for location-based queries.
- Structured Data Markup: Implementing schema markup on your website provides search engines with structured information about your content, making it easier for them to comprehend and present relevant details in voice search results.
By aligning your content and website with these important ranking factors, you can position your business for success in the realm of voice search. Understanding and implementing voice search optimization strategies will not only help you reach a broader audience but also enhance user experience, drive engagement, and ultimately improve your bottom line. Embrace the power of voice search and make your mark in this evolving digital landscape.
When it comes to any search engine optimization, the pages that have a high readability score tend to rank better. This is especially true for voice search. Search engines are better able to find content that’s well-written and structured in a straightforward manner. Voice search relies on easy-to-understand answers. This is true across various types of devices. Smartphones may deliver even more simply formatted information since users can both hear and read the results.
Fast Load Times Rank Higher
It makes sense that voice search would rely on page speed and quick page loading times. A search by voice tends to load in about half the time of a webpage search. Therefore, the only way your page will stand a chance of being delivered in a voice search is if its load speed is optimized. This is particularly true for voice speaker devices like Google Home. Smartphone speed will be a bit slower because visual page load elements must still be processed.
Pay Attention to Word Count
Studies show that, on average, the word count of a voice search result hovers at around 41 words. Similar results were found across various types of devices that allow search by voice. Smartphones may have slightly higher counts since text can also be read along with the provided audio. However, the results weren’t significantly higher. A general rule for voice search is that it’s best to supply brief answers.
Strive for High Search Rankings
Voice search is entirely consistent with traditional search engine placement. Results primarily come from the first page of organic search results. When using a voice speaker device, users can expect approximately 98% of delivered query answers to be taken from the first page of search engine results. Smartphone results rank slightly lower, with 93% percent coming from the first page. It’s best to shoot for the top four positions within search engine rankings if you want to be found through voice search.
Backlinks are Important
As with a more traditional desktop or mobile search, backlinks are essential in voice search queries. A strong backlink profile ensures a higher domain authority. Backlinks matter because searches, whether by voice or text, rely on obtaining the most accurate and reliable information to rank highly. With voice search specifically, this is even more relevant to voice speaker devices than it is to smartphones.
SERP Feature Results Play a Role
The term “SERP feature” refers to any search result on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) that isn’t among the traditional organic results. These include things like Featured Snippets, Knowledge Graphs, Top Stories, Reviews, and Answer Boxes. A majority of voice search results have been determined to come from a SERP feature. Featured Snippets are especially relevant to results from voice speaker devices. Featured Snippets are short summaries that usually are found before other SERP features near the top of the page. The People Often Ask feature plays prominently in results retrieved by smartphone voice searches. Therefore, you’re in good shape if your site ranks well for Featured Snippets or People Often Ask features.
Consider These Factors
Three other factors have been determined to play little role when it comes to ranking in voice search. These are schema, HTTPS, and URL depth. The majority of voice search results do use a schema; however, the most prevalent type is inconclusive. Schema markup improves general search rank because it makes it easy for engines to parse written content. This isn’t the case with search by voice. HTTPS and URL depth are also factors that haven’t proven to make a significant difference in voice search rankings. HTTPS adds additional security to websites. This is a practice that is highly recommended by Google. Thus, most voice and traditional search results ranking at the top are already likely to be secure. It’s wise to ensure your site is HTTPS compliant if you haven’t done so already. URL depth refers to a site’s directory structure. As with traditional content search, having a clear, shallow, and simple URL structure is also recommended in voice search.
These findings should help you to prepare your site’s voice search strategy more efficiently and successfully. While several factors that are crucial to traditional high rankings also matter when it comes to voice, some components are quite different.
Page ranking, load speed, and SERP features like holding a Featured Snippets position are of primary importance when you’re planning for voice search. Be sure your site is found in the top results for primary keywords, your page loads quickly, and that you strive to achieve a spot in Featured Snippets or People Often Ask.
As the use of voice search features on smartphones and speaker devices becomes even more popular, these strategies will be crucial to your marketing efforts. Incorporating the information you’ve learned here will increase your success when it comes to voice search rankings.
Looking to improve your search rankings and optimize for Voice? Contact us at SEO Inc.!