Voice Search has a Bright Future and Here’s Why
50% of all internet searches are now voice-based, which is why big and small brands have been re-adapting their marketing strategies and content for the new “voice market” in order to deliver value-based content effectively to their users.
Voice technology, or voice marketing, can be defined as a series of strategies and techniques applied for audiences that use voice activated devices such as Alexa, Siri, or Cortana, to mention just a few. These assistants are leading the way by playing music, making appointments and turning on and off the lights at home. But in a few years, they will surely be used for much more. We’re going to discuss what they currently do and what they are capable of doing.
Supporting the Buyer Journey
There’s no doubt that it is easier and more comfortable to speak than to write, especially when you are multitasking; on average we can write up to 40 words per minute, but when talking we can say more than 150 words per minute. It is for precisely this reason that voice notes are taking over whatsapp. It makes daily routines way much easier and empowers people to instantly get answers and information.
According to research, 24% of internet users prefer to use a personal voice assistant rather than visiting websites to interact with a brand. Another interesting fact is that even though not many people actually buy using these kinds of devices, 39% of users say that they do trust the product recommendations, they do use them to make informed decisions (47%), compare prices (32%) or add items to their purchase carts (43%).
An example of a brand that is currently personalizing its buyer’s experience through Alexa and building relationships through interactive experiences is Johnnie Walker whisky. Amazon’s virtual assistant first asks questions about the buyer’s preferences and then recommends the best Johnnie Walker product or cocktail for them. As well as providing ease of access to a product, Johnnie Walker is providing its customers with a positive user experience, likely to leave a lasting impression on the consumer.
Now that more and more brands are going digital, a higher number of consumers are integrating voice search into their day-today lives, thus changing how they find suitable products and interact with brands. Therefore these brands are looking to develop new search marketing strategies. While this may sound daunting at first, it is easy to see some of the benefits of voice search.
Boosting natural SEO positioning
Today, voice search is an important aspect of SEO; because of the use of voice and natural language, searches become faster and much more organic. In order to increase your brand visibility in voice search results, it is important to optimize your content to be voice-friendly. Compared to robotic keywords, new natural sounding ones will continue to grow in search volume as the use of voice search grows. This means that keyword research must be continuously refreshed.
It is important to note that voice-activated search requires a strong reliance on SEO, since there will only be one result spoken by Alexa or Google home, as opposed to multiple results provided during a text-based search. To ensure that theirs is the first result, brands will be required to dedicate more time and effort to optimisation.
Providing specific insights
Using voice search, marketers can collect more data and information about their target audience by analysing the search history and navigation paths of different users. This can then feed into a better personalisation of content and advertising, which has been proven to improve both the user experience and advertisers’ profitability.
Most commonly seen in the artificial intelligence powered chatbots that more and more brands are utilising, conversational is a method of engaging customers using dialogue-driven activity, often in a seemingly friendly or familiar tone.
The better known brands of voice assistants, such as Alexa or Google Home, are already demonstrating a conversational tone when asked questions by the user; if they are asked a joke question to try to ‘trick’ the machine, often they will retort with a witty quip to the surprise and delight of the user. By investing in this technique, brands will be able to forge a positive association between them and their customers.
Everyday more people are buying a voice assistant
There are 4.08 billion digital voice assistants in use around the world today and it’s predicted to reach 8 billion by 2023. To put this number into perspective, there is currently an estimated global population of 7.8 billion people, meaning that there will be at least one active voice assistant for every human on the planet. This incredible increase in the use of voice assistants means more opportunities to interact with consumers in a different way.
To stay ahead of the curve, brands now need to determine exactly how they plan to invest on voice search, while experimenting with new ideas to use and embrace smart speakers as a lucrative channel for driving incremental sales.