With the advent of Voice enabled searches on Mobile devices and Smart speakers, there has been a gradual but steady shift in how a typical Internet user searches for a service or product. Devices like Amazon Echo, Apple Homepod, Google Home have all found space in living rooms across the world. People can talk faster than they can type. An average human can type only 40 words in a minute but speak 150. Consequently, By the start of the next decade, using conversational queries will become mainstream. If a retailer vying for customer attention is not observant of this significant trend of e-commerce going toward v-commerce, then chances of lagging behind other competitors is increased.

Some of the interesting facts to be noted in the space of voice enabled search are that:

  • One fifth of all Queries on Google are voice searches

  • One out of ten Wi-Fi connected homes in US have a smart speaker

  • 40% of adults use voice search atleast once in a day

  • 25% of searches on Windows 10 taskbar are voice

  • There would be 21.4 million smart speakers in the US alone by 2020

  • By 2020 , 50 % of all Queries would be Voice-driven

*Source – https://edit.co.uk/blog/google-voice-search-stats-growth-trends/

While a text search in Google might yield a million results, a voice search on a mobile device might yield only top 3 results and 1 result for smart speakers! Therefore, the competition is all the more fierce. Therefore, it is highly required to adopt new strategies.

As part of the digital marketing strategy that your brand has in place already, are there any changes that are to be adopted while keeping in mind this emerging trend of voice enabled search? The good news is that you SEO strategy might just be sufficient if the following factors are incorporated on top.

  • Long tailed key words: The queries in voice searches are very conversational in nature. When users have been using fewer words (in the range of 3-5) per query in typical text search, the intent of the Search was probably difficult to find. However, now with voice searches the queries are longer and all the more specific. For instance, while a user might have simply typed “Tyre shop in KK Nagar “, a voice searcher might speak “Where can I find 19 inch MRF tyres in KK Nagar for my Audi Q7”. The user has revealed a lot of information. The corresponding targeted content needs to be on your website for Search Engine to refer it.

  • Answering a question: Users simply don’t say keywords, they ask Questions. You should devise a strategy to have content on your website that answers these natural language questions. You should get inside the mind of the customer and understand what he wants. The FAQs page on your website should have maximum number of questions answered so that they have content that might find a way probably into the Search engine’s results. Reviews of customers written on your website are also excellent starting points to search for text that answers the user’s questions. Blog posts are added bonus.

  • Geo Location related Searches: When it comes to local search, voice is 3x more likely to be used than text. Users searching with queries containing the text “Near me” has grown 2 twice in the past year. 80 % of people use voice searches for immediate on the go results. For instance, they want to know “Where is the nearest Grocery store”. Your business should be on the local listings of online directories for Google maps to refer it and consequently bring it up on search results. The address, contact numbers, opening hours should be up to date and precise for better results. Also, these details should not be hidden in images; rather they should be in simple text.

  • Searches on Mobile: Since the voice searches on mobile devices are more, your website needs to be more mobile friendly and have a minimal bounce rate. The time that it takes to load an average landing page on a mobile device is 15 seconds. The best time should’ve been under 3 seconds.

The above strategies could well place you a notch above your competitors when it comes to V-commerce. Starting to build for answer engine optimization is vital in order to survive in a competitive market where Voice enabled search is set to rule. Voice shopping market is expected to grow from $2 billion in 2018 to $40 billion by 2022. Anyone who wants to cash in on this should strategise well for the future.

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