Is Voice Search Crossing the Generational Divide?

A little under half of the daily voice searches are targeting local businesses. That means if your local business is not yet voice search-ready, you could be missing out on potential customers. It’s not just a young crowd only; everyone from Gen Zers to Gen Xers are using voice search on the regular. This blog provides information on exactly how popular voice assistants have become to consumers.

The observation of consumer interaction with businesses and technology is a big part of local marketers’ observations. Of course, millennials are more comfortable using voice assistants in public to send text messages or perform searches. Location doesn’t impact whether voice dictation is used or not – eateries, public pools, crowded hotel lobby – nothing holds them back. It is largely noted and research shows that the older generation prefers typing their text messages in public places and reserve voice assistant usage for private areas.

Another interesting observation is the willingness to watch videos posted on social media and play them with the sound on in public. Concern for the content in the video or surroundings has little to no impact on sound on vs. sound off. This is not just millennials playing these videos with the sound on – this crosses generations.

More and more older adults are getting more comfortable with voice technology and even using it in public. So, as a local marketer and/or business owner, no matter the consumer’s age, it seems voice assistants, voice search and voice-enabled devices will continue to rise in popularity. If your business isn’t voice search-ready and embracing technology, you will most likely be left behind.

There is a link here – your team can run a Voice Search Readiness test now to find out how visible a business is on Google’s Assistant, Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, Samsung’s Bixby and Microsoft’s Cortana.

Voice search drastically improves user experience – and because of that, by the year 2020, half of all online searches will be made through voice search.

Due to its prolific use, search engines such as Google are placing a higher emphasis on voice search optimization. The goal of SEO is to rank websites precisely so users can find the best information for their search query as quickly as possible. User experience is, ultimately, at the forefront of search engine optimization.

By January 2018, there was an average of one billion voice searches every month, showing that voice search was clearly on the rise. But it is important to distinguish that voice search SEO and traditional website SEO are different. Planning for the factors that affect website rankings will be different than planning for the same effect on voice search.

Will Voice Search Drive Website Traffic To Your Website?

While it does not seem that voice search openly contributes to an uptick in your Google Analytics reports, it does drive traffic to your website.

First, when Google reads results from voice search listings, it increases brand awareness by giving sites a shout out through a simple “According to ___” statement. Also, users can scroll through written dictations of search results, including links to the websites used as resources. This allows them to navigate to the site, thus increasing organic traffic when they do.

Finally, voice search improves other important metrics, such as online sales which is really the bottom line for a ton of local businesses.