Does Your SEO Speak for Itself? It’s Time to Optimize for Voice Search.
As voice-activated devices like Google Nest and smartphones continue to be widespread, Google has started placing a premium on sites that cater to the Alexas and Siris of the world. Ranking first in search results is more important than ever. Now is the time to double down on improving your local SEO, or you risk losing out on new patients entirely. Read on to learn more about how voice search is changing the search game for optometrists, and how to make sure your content gets the most out of it.
It’s Time We Had a Conversation About Voice Search
At the beginning of 2020, Google released a new algorithm update. It’s purpose? Retooling local search results to put more emphasis on voice search. Up until then, most businesses weren’t paying attention to it and saw it more as a sort of novelty. Now it’s something that can’t be ignored.
It isn’t surprising Google chose to go this direction when almost half of all people have started using voice search to find products and services, and the trend is only continuing to increase. It’s predicted that soon, over half of all search queries will be through voice search. But how it works, and the way people use it is different from most browser search queries. It’s pretty clear that the future belongs to “Hey, Google.” Learning how patients behave when using voice search, and optimizing your content, will be the most important thing you do for your SEO going forward.
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It’s Not Just for Phones Anymore
Voice-activated speakers have been a part of American homes for a while now. Ever since Amazon Alexa started the trend, people have been able to enjoy hands-free, screenless searches simply by speaking their desires out loud. Now, according to data from Google, 72 percent of people who own voice-activated speakers say they use them as part of their daily lives. This means patients can potentially start searching for your practice anywhere, at any time, without the aid of a computer. If you’re not optimized for voice search, you’re not reaching them. Now is the time to get ready for voice search, especially when it’s predicted that 55 percent of all households in the US will own a smart speaker by 2022.
Voice Search is Changing the Way We Think About SEO
Recently, we’ve had clients asking about simple, cost-effective, time efficient strategies for optimizing content for search engines. While there are some basics every practice should be doing as a minimum, voice search has changed the way people access search results.
Instead of bringing up a list of ten organic websites to choose from, it pulls from the first result in the local three-pack.
Here’s the kicker. Voice search only reads the first result. You don’t get points for getting silver here. You’re either first, or you’re last.
The bottom line: There’s no such thing as simple, time efficient SEO anymore (if there ever was to begin with). The way voice search operates has made it so that if there’s one marketing initiative you should be willing to go all in on, it needs to be SEO.
Eye care providers will need to devote a lot of time and resources to their SEO going forward. The typical shotgun approach to optimization isn’t going to cut it anymore. Each locality is different, with unique needs and search behaviors. You need to do some research to figure out what your target patients are searching for, what your competitors are optimizing for, and then come up with a strategy to get to position one.
Understanding Voice Search Behavior
The way voice search reacts to patients will be different depending on the phrasing of their question. For instance, if we asked Google “which eye doctors are near me,” we’d get a completely different answer than if we asked “Myopia management near me” or, “scleral lenses near me.” This may seem rather obvious, given this is typically how Google search works, but how the question is asked really matters now because patients will only see the top result. You need to be really refined with what you’re optimizing for, especially if you’re in a competitive area.
Raising Your Voice: Optimizing for Voice Search
If you don’t currently occupy the top spot in the three-pack, don’t worry. We’ve created an E-book filled to the brim with tips specifically designed to help you optimize for voice search and reach the top in no time. Fill out the form above and download the E-book free today!
Want Your SEO to Be Louder?
The rise of voice search can be a lot to take in. If you’re already struggling to find time to work on your SEO now, throwing voice search into the mix probably seems overwhelming. Yet the benefits can no longer be ignored, and as more and more people switch to voice search for their queries, it’s become less of a recommendation and more of a necessity. EyeCarePro has 17 years of experience in boosting the SEO of thousands of practices just like yours. From compelling, click-enticing content, to mobile-first strategies that keep voice search in mind, we can help you improve your rankings across the board. Give us a call today at 201.591.4350 and let's make sure your practice's voice is heard.