This is a guest post from Matthew Fritschle at Aumcore.
If last year taught us anything, it’s that search behavior is constantly changing. Surviving means keeping track of said changes and making the most of them.
For example, when mobile searches exceeded desktop searches, brands that changed accordingly profited, while those that remained stuck in their ways didn’t.
After all, mobile users expect speed, and mobile optimization is all about getting pages to load fast so users get what they need, when they need it.
Searching with a mobile device means searching with a smaller window that can’t fit everything a traditional desktop window can. Naturally, certain modifications to the site have to be made, making the mobile version responsive and adaptive for every screen.
Today, the changes we’re seeing stem from mobile use and revolve around voice search (i.e. using voice assistants like Siri and Alexa to do the searching for us).
Read on to learn about voice search statistics for 2020, so you know the importance of optimizing for it. You’ll also get an explainer on how to optimize your website for voice search, so you don’t miss out on all the voice traffic coming your way.
Finally, check out our voice search predictions for 2020 and beyond so you can prepare for everything coming your way.
Voice search statistics 2020: 20 trends to watch
As you can see, mobile devices and voice search are connected, but don’t just take our word for it. You can see it in the voice search statistics below:
- Between 20% and 25% of all mobile queries are actually voice searches.
- In fact, about 20% of adults use mobile devices for voice searches at least once per month.
- Considering what’s above and the fact that typing while driving isn’t exactly safe, it makes sense that 52% of people use voice search while they’re on the road.
- Moving to intent, mobile voice searches are 3X more likely to be local-based than text-related searches.
- Smart speakers, another voice search tool, also have a local component: 76% of smart speaker users use voice searches for local searches at least weekly, and 46% perform them daily.
- Additionally, 27% visit the website of a local business after making a voice search.
- In terms of what they’re looking for, 51% of consumers use voice search to research restaurants.
- While just 15% of internet users currently own a voice-controlled smart assistant that can search for them, 34% say they’re interested in purchasing one.
- A PwC study also found that only 10% of respondents were not familiar with voice-enabled products and devices. As for the 90% who were, 72% had already used one before.
- Another finding was that 65% of 25-49 year olds speak to their voice-enabled devices at least once per day.
- Here are the devices they use to do so:
○ Smartphone (57%)
○ Tablet (29%)
○ Laptop (29%)
○ Desktop (29%)
○ Speaker (27%)
○ TV remove (21%)
○ Car navigation (20%)
○ Wearable (14%)
- Focusing on use, 50% of respondents admitted to using their voice assistants to make a purchase, and an additional 25% would consider doing so in the future.
- Likewise, an average of 80% of consumers who have shopped using their voice assistant are satisfied. As a result:
○ 39% shared their positive experiences with friends and family
○ 39% shopped again with the same retailer
○ 36% have a more favorable opinion of the retailer
○ 24% spent more money with the retailer
- Delving deeper into voice search and shopping, 51% of those who shop via voice use it to research products.
- When you consider that nearly 20% of all voice search queries are triggered by a set of 25 keywords that consist mainly of question words like the 5 Ws (who, what, where, when, why) and how, and adjectives like “best” or “easy,” you begin to see the connection between voice search and shopping.
- Going back to the point about researching a product, 22% make purchases directly through voice after researching and 17% have even used it to reorder items.
- To conclude our discussion on shopping, voice shopping is expected to jump to $40 billion in 2022, up from $2 billion in 2018.
- Moving to SEO to close our statistics, 70.4% of voice search result pages are HTTPS websites that Google and other search engines prioritize for their SERPs because of their bolstered security.
- The average voice search result page also loads in 4.6 seconds, reinforcing our discussion earlier about the importance of speed for mobile-based searches.
- Finally, the typical voice search result is only 29 words in length. (Tailor your website’s content and what you would want to be pulled for a voice query.)
How to optimize your website for voice search
Now that we’ve covered some voice usage trends for 2020, you may be wondering how to optimize your website for voice search. Lucky for you, we have a couple of must-haves and must-dos below so you can get started:
Secure your site with HTTPS
Like we covered in the stats above, Google likes websites that are secured with HTTPS and is more likely to use them for voice search results.
For you (if you haven’t already), this means migrating your website from HTTP to HTTPS. If you need some help with that, feel free to use this SEO HTTPS migration guide that ensures you migrate without negatively impacting your SEO efforts.
Use Structured Data
Another important thing you need to do to make it more likely that your content will be used for voice results is to structure your website with schema markup, which is metadata that’s seen by search crawlers as opposed to users.
This is important for voice search because structured data helps crawlers understand your content—they can’t actually read it, after all—and gives them data points they can use to match (voice) questions with answers.
Create a FAQ Page
If you want your content to be pulled up for a voice query, create a FAQ page with everything you want your users to know.
FAQ pages are perfect for voice search because their format in which an answer immediately follows a question is exactly what the search engines want.
After all, isn’t it easier to pull an answer from an FAQ page than a blog post? The answer is often clearer than other answers pulled by search engine snippets.
Publish blog posts that answer your users’ questions
Still, snippets are valuable. Like FAQ pages, your blog posts should answer the questions your users are asking.
As a bonus, consider that the average word count of a Google voice results page is 2,312 words. There are a couple of possibilities for this.
Long-form content offers more opportunities for a match between question and answer to happen, and this type of content is generally seen as more informative than its shorter counterparts.
Regardless, publish longer blog posts that answer your users’ questions if you want better search results for voice tech.
As we wrap up, let’s focus on more than voice search statistics. Let’s focus on the future of voice search so we can prepare for what’s to come.
The future of voice search in 2020 and beyond
What does it mean to live in a world where our voice is becoming the new keyboard? For marketers and business owners, it means modifying strategies to consider what an actual voice query entails: high intent and conversational content.
“Coffee near me,” is now, “Hey, Siri, where is the nearest coffee shop?” As you can see, this question is not only more conversational in nature (because you’re “talking” with a voice assistant), but it’s also highly suggestive of the searcher’s intent.
Still, even as we become more conversational, it’s important to remember that search engines and their crawlers can’t actually read your content the way a human would.
You still need to make it as easy as possible for crawlers and bots to pull your content and use it, especially since there are so many other sites trying to be seen and heard.
By thinking about the engines searching your site as well as the humans using it, your voice is more likely to be heard above all the others.
Matthew is a content writer for Aumcore, a digital marketing agency based in NYC that specializes in voice search optimization and SEO. He writes on a variety of topics that range from the evolving search landscape to emerging technological trends.