Mobile technology has changed everything. While desktops dominated for a long time, they have now been overtaken by devices such as smartphones, laptops, and tablets as more people are now on the go. A companion to this trend has been an upswing in voice searching using these devices. With apps such as Siri, Okay Google, and Alexa adding the convenience of conversation to voice search, a new way of viewing SEO is emerging with it. How is mobile voice search changing SEO? Let’s take a look.

Different Wording

Voice Search on Mobil Affects SEOPeople speak differently than they type, so it changes the wording of their mobile searches. Traditionally, short-tail keywords have dominated SEO because all the search engine had to do was look for the keywords and churn out answers based on them. While this is mostly efficient, conversational wording brings up a different set of data. Furthermore, this data is more specific. So a query like “Broadway plays Wednesday afternoon” can become “What plays are playing on Broadway Wednesday afternoon?” Search engines typically search for the keywords “Broadway,” “Wednesday,” and “afternoon,” but voice search demands context, and the answers have to be in context as well.

Multi-Tier Searching

Voice search will enable users to build from previous searches. To continue the example, this means that once you find out what plays are on Broadway on Wednesday afternoon, you can then ask “Which one has the highest reviews?” or “Which one starts at 1 p.m.?” With almost instant results, this allows for a long string of searches at a fast pace. Users of mobile devices are looking for convenience such as this, and having your results ready to accommodate them is going to be key in the days to come.

Rankings are Going to Change

Voice Search on Mobile Affects RankingsWith short-tail keywords, a website ranks in a search engine based on how many times the keywords show up on the site and on backlinks. However, with the new logistics brought to the table by voice search, that is poised to change. Now, relevance and context are going to be what puts a site to the top of the list, followed by individual factors (such as location). Ensuring your site has good, informative copy is going to be more important than ever, as rankings for voice searches will be based on more specific parameters than ever before.

Consumer Reviews Count

One thing that is definitely going to have an increase in impact is consumer reviews on sites such as Yelp, Twitter, or Facebook. Customers want quality, and they’re going to ask for it (“Okay, Google, find me a 4-star Greek restaurant.”). Search engines are going to take reviews and complaints into account in these assessments, and getting to the top of the list is going to be about making sure your customers are so satisfied, they’re moved to write a review, or at least rate your product or service. You want to provide great customer service anyway, but if you want to be the most relevant result, you’re going to have to earn it by word-of-mouth, tweet, and 5-star rating.


With all the new technology coming out that is focusing on mobile voice search, it is imperative to keep up in order to stay competitive. This means having your online marketing ready for the increase in voice search from mobile devices. – streamlines, full of easily accessible facts, and ready to provide answers at a moment’s notice.


  • Nick Rojas

    Nick Andrew Rojas is a journalist and a self-taught serial entrepreneur who has worked with various startups as a business consultant. His work often discusses marketing, business and technology. He loves to connect so reach out on Twitter! @nickarojas. Nick volunteers for AMA Boston in his (limited) spare time.