Around 50% of all searches on the web are voice searches.
In 2020, Campaign.com shared this staggering stat, based on Comscore research. In 2019, Statista.com backed this data up by saying that around 42% of the worldwide population used voice search within the past month. Adobe talked about 48% of consumers using voice for “general web searches.”
However, due to the way the Internet is constructed and my curiosity, the 20th or 30th article about voice search I’ve read is debunking Comscore’s 50% prediction. According to it, Comscore projects “at least 50% of all searches are going to be either through images or speech in five years.”
Whatever the exact number is, the buzz on voice search was in the air in 2020 for a reason, so now is a great time to learn more about this trend to be prepared for the future.
Smart speaker market
Smart speakers with voice assistants, which are responsible for 39% of all voice searches, are rapidly expanding in North America.
Alexa is the leading brand in the US smart speaker market, owned by 74% of Americans. Сanadians are not so apparent in their choice — 53% of Canadians prefer Google Home while 48% of Canadians own Alexa.
Forecasts are even more promising. The worldwide smart speaker market revenue is going to increase by 44% in the next five years, reaching $35.5 billion in 2025.
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What should marketers do?
Quick answer — optimize their websites for voice search.
The problem is that voice search and regular search are different.
With voice search, you’re playing an all or nothing game — you have one chance to be picked up by a voice assistant.
However, it is most likely to happen if you’re first in search results, particularly in SERP features.
You can’t measure ROI from voice search optimization. For now, Bing or Google web analytics don’t provide tools to identify how much traffic comes in via voice search.
But what you can do is tailor your SEO strategies based on the knowledge of smart speakers’ behaviour.
Here are some key takeaways from the SEMrush Voice Search 2020 study that might help you understand voice searches’ main characteristics and how they differ across the most popular smart speakers.
Recommendations for voice search optimization
- Put specific questions in your titles or subtitles, starting from the 5 Ws: “Who,” “What,” “When,” “Where,” “Why” + “How.” Consider adding the FAQ section to your website.
- Use long-tail keywords and more conversational keywords. Use AnswerThePublic to discover how exactly people are searching for stuff.
- Give short and sweet answers to particular questions within your content.
- Optimize your website for local voice search as 22% of voice queries are for local-based content.
- Make your website load fast on all devices.
- Focus on ranking in featured snippets. Most importantly, ranking in featured snippets is our primary measurement to identify how well a website is optimized for voice search.
Lionbridge case study
Some companies have already realized the importance of the voice search trend and optimized their websites for voice search queries.
Lionbridge, an American company specializing in translation and game localization, attributes a 127% growth in page views to their voice search optimization strategy. In just a year, they improved their ranking in featured snippets from 0.7% to 27% and increased their SERP positions by 22.5%. Here is a detailed case study explaining how exactly they’ve achieved such results.
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Why Should All Marketers Learn More About Voice Search in 2021? was originally published in Chatbots Life on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.