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Learn how to optimize your website for voice search and voice assistants like Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant.

Voice Search Optimization

Voice search is becoming increasingly popular as more people use voice assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant. When someone does a voice search, they speak a query out loud instead of typing it into a search box. This means websites need to be optimized differently for voice search compared to regular text search.

Optimizing a WordPress site for voice search can help it rank higher in voice search results and improve visibility. Here is a comprehensive guide on best practices for voice search optimization for WordPress:

Focus on Intent and Natural Language

With voice searches, people speak naturally using full sentences and questions instead of just keywords. So it’s important that your content focuses on intent and uses natural language.

For example, instead of targeting the keyword “wordpress hosting”, target questions like “what is the best wordpress hosting?” or “where can I find reliable wordpress hosting services?”.

Use longer, conversational phrases and FAQ style content. Answer the actual questions and intents people have rather than trying to sprinkle keywords unnaturally.

Optimize Page Titles Page titles are very important for voice search because they are often read out as part of the search result. Make your titles concise, natural, and include important keywords.

For example:

“The 5 Best Web Hosting Services for WordPress in 2022”

Instead of:

“Best WordPress Hosting Services – 2022 Recommendations”

The conversational title reads better for voice results.

Use Shorter Content For voice search, shorter content tends to perform better than long form content. People want to get a quick answer by voice, not read a 2000 word article.

Aim for short paragraphs, bullet points, and clear headings. Answer the question or intent directly without too much elaboration. 300-500 words is ideal.

Improve Readability Since voice assistants read out the content, optimize for readability:

  • Avoid long sentences
  • Use active voice
  • Write in second person (you, your)
  • Use transition words like “first”, “next”
  • Include punctuation for natural pauses

Having clear, readable content allows voice assistants to pronounce and understand your content correctly.

Optimize for Featured Snippets Featured snippets are brief paragraphs that directly answer a voice search query. If you can rank your content for featured snippets, it will get prime visibility in voice results.

Study featured snippets for your keywords to see what content format works best. Often, lists, comparisons, or How To guides will get featured.

Use Structured Data Add schema markup or structured data to your WordPress site. This includes metadata that helps voice assistants understand your content better.

Important types of structured data include:

  • FAQ schema for FAQ content
  • HowTo schema for tutorials
  • Review schema for product/service reviews
  • Recipe schema for recipes
  • Event schema for events

There are WordPress plugins that make it easy to add schema markup without coding.

Focus on Speed Page speed becomes even more important for voice search. Slow loading sites lead to a poor voice search experience.

Optimize images, enable caching, minimize plugins, and optimize your WordPress hosting to improve site speed. Voice search results favor fast loading pages.

Optimize for Local SEO Voice searches are often looking for local information like “find restaurants nearby”. Ensure your website is optimized for local SEO.

Key elements include:

  • Business address, phone, opening hours
  • Local business schema markup
  • Area served, geo-tags
  • Local content and keywords

Ranking in local pack voice search results can drive foot traffic.

Provide Audio Content Consider creating audio content like podcasts. Audio content tends to perform well for voice queries since it matches the audio nature of voice search.

You can turn your best performing blog posts into audio content. Or create unique audio content around your keywords.

Make Your Site Voice Search Friendly Ensure your website offers a good experience for voice assistant users:

  • Simple navigation
  • Avoid click/tap only interactions
  • FAQ page
  • Contact page with phone click to call
  • Structured data for key content

Test your site with tools like Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test and think about usability for voice.

Do Keyword Research Run keyword research to identify high volume voice search queries related to your business. Study long-tail natural language queries instead of just keywords.

Tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, and KWFinder can help uncover voice search opportunities.

Track Rankings Monitor your rankings for voice search queries. Are you gaining visibility in featured snippets and knowledge panels?

Ranking tracking helps you double down on effective optimization and improve areas not performing.

Promote Your Brand Name Brand name search queries like “Nike shoes” are popular on voice search. Ensure you are optimizing for your brand name.

Content, social media, and links from other sites help improve brand visibility and voice search rankings.

Conclusion

Optimizing for voice search should be a priority for WordPress sites going forward. By focusing on natural language, intent-based content, readability, speed, and search performance, you can gain visibility in voice results.

Use this guide as a blueprint for where to start with voice search optimization and tracking progress over time. With an increasing number of voice assistant users, voice search visibility will only grow in importance.

What is voice search optimization?

Voice search optimization refers to optimizing your website content and structure to rank better for voice searches on platforms like Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant. The goal is to appear higher in voice search results.

What is the difference between regular SEO and voice search SEO?

Regular SEO focuses on optimizing for text searches by users typing keywords into a search engine. Voice search SEO optimizes for spoken natural language voice queries using long-tail conversational phrases instead of just keywords.

How is voice search different than typing search queries?

With voice search, people speak their queries out loud using full sentences and questions. This is more natural than typing just a few keywords. Voice search is more conversational.

How do you optimize for Siri search?

Optimizing for Siri includes using natural language content focused on intent, improving readability with short sentences, and using Siri suggest skills. Add audio content, local search optimization, and Apple-specific schema markup.

What is the best way to optimize for Alexa search?

For Alexa search optimization, focus on long-tail natural questions, improving site speed, structured data for Alexa skills, conversational tone, optimizing for featured snippets, and gaining links and visibility for your brand name.

How can you improve visibility in Google Assistant search results?

Optimize sites for Google Assistant with voice-friendly navigation, pages with structured data, audio content, speed improvements, local SEO, brand name mentions, and natural language optimization aimed at ranking for featured snippets.

How important is voice search optimization for SEO?

Very important. Voice search usage is growing rapidly. Optimizing for voice search now can help future-proof websites for how people are searching. Voice search visibility should be a core part of every SEO strategy.

What tools can you use for voice search optimization?

Use tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, and KWFinder for voice keyword research. Use Google Search Console, Moz and Rank Ranger to track voice search rankings. Test with Google’s Mobile-Friendly test. Use schema markup generators like Schema App.

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