Your 2021 Guide to Voice Search and Conversational AI

17 May 2021

Nowadays, it’s the norm for people to converse with the likes of Siri, Cortana, and Alexa. Whether you’re wondering what the weather will be like tomorrow or looking for the best five-star hotel in Melbourne, virtual assistants can answer queries swiftly and accurately, with a uniquely human quality that’s becoming more convincing by the day. Asking your virtual assistant can be a convenient alternative to typing, especially when our hands are preoccupied.

Voice search, along with conversational AI, is gaining more and more momentum in the digital world. It is estimated that around 3.25 billion people currently use voice-assisted search, and this trend shows no signs of slowing down. This means that you, as a marketer, need to optimise your content for the rank zero snippet, which is the single answer with which voice assistants will respond to user questions.

What is voice search?

Voice search, in its distilled form, operates in the same way as Google. It simply offers a new way to find information online. This sophisticated technology allows the user to speak into a search engine with their query, and the response deemed most appropriate (i.e. the rank zero snippet) will be “spoken” allowed. Of course, its functionality doesn’t end there. You can also use this software to give commands to your smart device, such as setting an alarm or increasing the volume. Voice search has many common applications, including:

  • making search engine queries
  • clarifying specifics of the request
  • requesting specific information
  • launching programs and selecting options
  • searching for content in audio or video files
  • voice dialing.

What is conversational AI?

Conversational AI makes use of chatbots, messaging apps and voice assistants that use Natural Language Processing (NLP) to deliver messages in a conversational manner, creating the illusion that a real person is communicating with you behind the screen. NLP is what gives this AI its lifelike quality, as it is capable of understanding human language and thought processing. Essentially, these bots are programmed to relay information in a natural and friendly way. It’s the simple things like the use of the word ‘hello’ that add a human feel, as well as phrases like ‘is this what you’re looking for’ rather than ‘no matches found’ or ‘invalid, please try again’.

How this technology can help your website

You’re likely to notice a surge in online traffic if you’re site is equipped with voice-enabled search or chatbots. Here’s why else it’s worth considering.

1. Loads faster than conventional search

Many people prefer voice technology nowadays thanks to its fast and accurate results. Voice recognition software is said to be 3x faster than manually typing, and 20.4% more precise. Backlinko data supports these findings.

2. Altered customer journey

Instead of having to sift through multiple pages and tabs to find what you’re looking for, with voice-aided searches and intelligent AI conversations, your question is answered in an instant.

3. Rank zero snippets boost your SEO

If you play your cards right, your webpages could be featured in the rank zero snippet. This coveted spot can boost your online visibility significantly.

5. Personalisation

Both voice technology and conversational AI deliver a more personalised experienced to users, providing them with valuable content to which they can relate. This in turn can increase usage and enhance UX.  

5. Long-form content

Google is a fan of long-form content. A voice search result generates an average of about 2,312 words. So, if you have blogs and articles that contain commonly-searched keywords, you may have a good chance of appearing in voice search results.

Is your website stuck in the dark age? It may be time to get up to speed with the latest digital trends. If you don’t know where to start, talk to the experts at Elephant in the Boardroom. We are always ahead of the technological curve, and know how to make an impact online. Whether you need a powerful website, killer socials or an SEO boost, we have the digital smarts to take your business to new heights. Schedule a call now at +61 37018 7620 or visit www.elephantintheboardroom.com.