While just a few years ago it may have seemed like science fiction, it has become commonplace to see and hear people asking their smartphones and other devices to find them the nearest Chinese restaurant or what the weather will be tomorrow.
Personal voice assistants such as Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, and Google Now are learning to understand natural language with an ever-higher degree of certainty, and a study commissioned by Google indicates that 41 percent of adults use voice search at least once per day.
Voice Searches Differ in Significant Ways from Text Searches
Many observers are expecting the percentage of searches conducted by voice to continue to rise as the technology improves and voice assistants become standard on desktop operating systems. Importantly, voice searches tend to be in the form of a question rather than a series of specific search terms – for example, the text search “personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles” may become “Who is the best personal injury lawyer in L.A.?” when conducted via a voice assistant.
How Should Law Firm Websites Adapt their Content to Rank for Voice-Based Searches?
An effective content strategy should always involve adding content that answers questions that people are asking, whether they are typing or speaking. Google has always made clear that it rewards high-quality content that is written primarily for people and not for search engines. In fact, in the past, it has specifically targeted keyword stuffing as a “black-hat” SEO tactic and has penalized sites that it felt were “over-optimized.” So, what is a law firm or law firm marketer to do? Here are some ideas:
- Regularly add content that includes conversational and natural language (the way people speak, not type). Consider this – would a person ask Siri “4 steps to take after a workplace accident” or “what should I do after I’m hurt at work? While both are possible, our money is certainly on the second one.
- Keep in mind that many voice searches are local – for example, “Find me a criminal defense attorney near me,” or “Where is a DUI defense lawyer in Chicago?” For this reason, local optimization based on Google Plus, Yelp, and other business listings will remain relevant, as will keywords that incorporate a firm’s geographic location and practice area.
- It stands to reason that the majority of voice searches are conducted on mobile, as Microsoft and Apple are just now starting to integrate their voice search assistants into their desktop operating system software. As a result, a critical aspect of optimizing for voice search involves optimizing for mobile, thereby providing voice searchers who find your site with a mobile-friendly user experience.
A professional legal content writer can help you optimize for voice search
Adding relevant, compelling, and well-written content takes a significant amount of time, a resource that busy attorneys often lack. Fortunately, the legal copywriters at Lexicon Legal Content can be of assistance. Call us today to discuss your content needs.