Blog / Emerging tech trends

Apr 10/17

Voice Searches & Your SEO

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Voice search is the fastest growing type of search nowadays and having a casual conversation with a computer must have seemed like far-flung science fiction. Voice chat is also becoming increasingly reliable as technology improves and the voice-activated software uses natural language processing and text-to-speech to understand your search intent. Programs like Google Now, Siri, and Cortana become more popular, and their programming becomes more refined and therefore it important that search engines must learn to interpret natural phrases. Google’s been trying to adopt speech quirks and idiosyncrasies into its voice search programming and based on the past search queries, context, and frequency of use, voice search results may get better.

Evolution of the original voice search tools:

1952: Aubrey is first introduced and could recognize a man’s voice speaking numbers 1 through 9.
1962: IBM brought us Shoebox that resembled a calculator which could acknowledge numbers and math-related symbols
1971: Harby was able to detect 1,011 words, but took long time for the system to process the words.
1984: Apple came out with MacInTalk speech software.
1990: Dragon Dictate came out with a $9,000 price tag.
2001: Voice Recognition Software existed in Windows XP Tablet PC edition.
2005: Samsung included voice dictation for text messages in the SCH-p-207 handset.
2010: Google Voice Search is announced on iPhones.
2011: Apple launches Siri.
2015: Microsoft introduces us to Cortana on Microsoft 10 then, later in the year on mobile Android devices.
2016: Amazon Echo makes its debut during a SuperBowl commercial.

Voice search is promoted, as,

  • Search will adopt a more natural and a conversational approach.

  • Content will provide direct answers to questions.

  • Long-tail keyword terms will be the focus of content.

  • Sentences and phrases will be at the center of the content

  • Semantic search will start to become a bigger player.

  • Schema markup for voice search could be a thing.

  • Digital assistants will share data on search queries.

  • Optimized videos will see a rise in the search results.


Speech Interpretation and Recognition Interface or Siri is Apple’s voice assistant which is available on most of the Apple products. Though it comes pre-installed, home button on certain models allows you to ask questions, set reminders, find restaurants, calculate tips, and much more.

Cool Features

  • Connects to iPhone, Apple TV and Apple’s CarPlay software.

  • Ability to understand different accents.

  • Voice can be adjusted by the users to reflect male or female voice.

  • Proven to be the fastest in populating search results.

  • Connects with third-party apps like OpenTable and Fandango.

  • Users with iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone SE, and iPad Pro (9.7-inch) can say “Hey Siri” without needed to plug into a power source.

The Downside

  • Cannot connect to Apple computers.

  • Required to click the home button for one-touch activation.

  • Results are not as personalized when compared to other digital assistants.

Favorite Hacks:

  • Click “Tap to edit” to correct Siri and to create better results

  • Create relationships by letting Siri know how people relate to you.

  • Make reservations at your favorite local restaurant.

Google Now
The first voice assistant that delivers personalized voice results based on your history and preferences is Google Now.
Cool Features

  • Can be used on Windows and iOS platforms.

  • Connects to your Android Auto so that you can use it in your car.

  • Integrates directly to Nexus phones.

  • Super cool always listening feature.

  • Clean interface with cards layout that attempts to pull what you may be interested in based on your preferences.

The Downside 

  • Must be used in the app on devices that are not Nexus

  • Activation can be confusing in case of Siri and Cortana.

Favorite Hacks

  • Say “Go, go gadget [app name] or “Open [app name] to open an app.

  • Just ask Google Now for help by saying, ”How do you say [word] in [language]? While you’re traveling to another country.

  • Ask,”Where’s my package?” to locate your package in email history.

  • Say “Set the temperature to 74 degrees” to adjust the weather.


Microsoft’s Cortana or Microsoft’s virtual assistant was launched when they were finally looking to capture more in the mobile space and as a result Cortana is powered with the help of Bing to get personalized search queries as such you’re working with an assistant in real. Cortana is built to not only understand voice queries but also context and to manage your daily life just as a human personal assistant would.

Cool Features

  • Connects with PCs (Windows 10 and up).

  • Creates a “notebook” of your preferences to save relevant information.

  • Understands follow-up questions.

  • Computes contextual questions.

The Downside 

  • One-touch activation with the home screen.

  • Little integration with third-party apps.

  • Doesn’t understand punctuation when compared to others.

Favorite Hacks 

  • You can play “rock paper scissors” with her.

  • Tell her to remind something when you reach a particular location

  • “Sing me a song” and Cortana will start singing in a human voice.


Alexa is a high-tech virtual command gizmo to keep on your bookshelf or desk and it has the “far-field voice recognition” component that allows it to recognize your voice from the opposite side of the room.

Cool Features

  • Actively listens without the push of a button.

  • Accesses your home to turn on the lights.

  • Creates shopping lists and can order from Amazon.

  • Schedule an Uber.

  • Can order pizza from Domino’s.

The Downside 

  • Available only to United States users.

  • Lack high-level search capabilities when compared to other digital assistants.

Favorite Hacks 

  • It is possible for Alexa to pay your upcoming bills with voice commands.

  • You can ask Alexa to read a Kindle book out loud for you.

  • Use the CookBook for a step-by-step instructional guide.

  • 7-minute workout with Alexa is priceless.

The Best One

Every digital assistant has their capabilities and successes and it is important to see what works best for our individual needs. Several surveys suggested that the Apple product Siri stands a step ahead as she tries to keep everything simple and user friendly.