Your patients are searching for you online. Pew Research Center data shows 77% of all health inquiries begin at a search engine, with 72% of total Internet users say they’ve looked online for health information within the past year.
While the majority of patients searching for information on the web still trust search engines but the way people search for information online is changing. Increasingly, people are using voice search on their smartphones, tablets or voice assistants (like the Amazon Echo or Google Home devices) to search for information on the internet (yet another compelling reason to make sure that your site is optimized for mobile).
According to comScore’s forecasting, 50 percent of searches will be performed through voice functions in 2020 and the majority will be done without even looking at a screen.
How people are using voice search
In recent research carried out by BrightLocal, consumers were asked how they used voice assistants and voice search for local business. The top three most demanded voice search functions involve finding restaurants, grocery stores, and food delivery, with clothing, accommodation, and medicine following closely behind.
The Voice Search for Local Business Study also revealed that 46% of voice search users use voice search to find local businesses daily.
How to optimize your website for voice searches
In essence, voice searches are largely about answering questions, not about focusing on individual keywords. SEO is fast becoming AEO (Answer Engine Optimisation).
What does best-answer content look like? Top Rank Blog’s Lee Odden, says best-answer content encompasses the following:
- Specific, in-demand topic
- More valuable and useful than other sites
- High quality
- Device friendly, accessible
Insider Tip! When people talk to their voice assistants, they don’t form their inquiries the same way that they do in typed search queries. Rather, they tend to ask conversational questions, for example, “What’s the closest dental clinic to me?” instead of “dental clinic near me.”
Here are 3 more tips to consider while generating content for voice activation devices:
- Use long-tail keywords. A great tip here is to use the “People Also Asked” Feature in Google.
- Structure SEO around conversational keywords – in other words, address not just a specific keyword with your content, but rather the breadth of what someone is trying to learn when they search for that keyword
- Account for misspelled/misinterpreted words (sometimes Siri or Alexa can misinterpret what you’re saying).
Just as marketers have optimized content for web 2.0 and mobile, they will have to start optimizing content for voice search as well. To quote NewsCred, “If you’re a marketer, “What’s the Alexa strategy?” will be a question you’ll be expected to answer.”