- On December 5, 2016
The world of SEO and technology is ever changing. It can be very difficult for a business to take advantage of the growing tech industry, but businesses that batten down the hatches and ignore how the new available technology can help with local SEO will be left behind by the more tech savvy companies.. With the introduction of Microsoft’s Cortana, a program designed to recognise human speech and follow instructions, many other companies have attempted to develop their own version and improve on the design. Two fellow tech giants, Google and Amazon, have created their own version of this with Google Assistant and Amazon Echo. You might think that these inventions have little to do with you or your business. But when you realise what these tools can do, you’ll realise that’s not the case.
What are Google Assistant and Amazon Echo?
Google and Amazon have attempted to revolutionise the AI assistant industry. Amazon Echo is a voice controlled Wi-Fi and Bluetooth speaker including a voice assistant called Alexa. It can also be used as a home controller, even being able to connect to your home lights and turn them on or off at voice command. This device is more of a home entertainment too than Google Assistant, which is a conversational program that allows users to talk directly to their device with far more options than previous models like Cortana. You could simply ask Google Assistant to show you the way home, but you could also ask it to tell you how many coffee shops or restaurants are along the way. It has a huge wealth of knowledge that can be condensed down through questions. It also includes Google Home, offering similar home entertainment capabilities as Amazon Echo.
How do these new technologies affect your business?
The main impact of Google Assistant and Amazon Echo on your business will be the removal of search engine results pages when using them. With the ability to have Amazon Echo or Google Assistant search through their databases via voice commands, their users have no need to view the search pages where advertisers have spent so much time setting up their digital marketing for SEO. Companies can’t stop the rush of new technology. But you can adapt to flow along with it.
Queries on Google Assistant are separated into different categories, and Google responds to each category differently. Here are some examples of the key categories queries are split into.
|Facts & Information||Ask Google what you want to know about something.||When did The Hunger Games come out?|
|Local Guide||Search for local places and information.||Find me a Chinese Restaurant.|
|Play audio using Google Home.||Stream audio to any speaker.||Play Poker Face by Lady Gaga on Living Room TV.|
|Dictionary||Get definitions and words for spellings and languages.||How do you spell Computer in Italian?|
|Calculator||Perform complicated Calculations.||What is 2716 times 21?|
The majority of categories are either entertainment based or only need a single word to answer. As such, there are only two relevant categories of query right now that SEO’s will have any effect on at all. They are “Facts & Info” and “Local Guide”. Other categories, such as “Audio” or “Finance”, will simply pull up the relevant information or feature rather than go to a webpage.
How can these new technologies help your business?
When someone asks a question that needs a webpage, Google or Amazon pull up a small snippet with relevant information. This will make SEO far more competitive, as the snippet that gets pulled up will be the number one result on Google search results. This piece of information will be read out loud by the device, and as of right now it reads whatever text is in the featured snippet, often including the name of the website it took it from. Businesses can take advantage of this. Just be careful not to make the snippet sound like a direct sales pitch, or you won’t be the top rated snippet for long. This article offers examples on how certain queries get translated into Google Home, and how you can take advantage of it.
To put it simply, if a local customer asks for the best bike shop in the area, Google Assistant will show only one result, the top rated website on their search results. If that isn’t yours, then you won’t be getting any of the exposure from Google Assistant. So you’d better make sure that it IS yours, and the name of your website will be attributed to whatever snippet of information Google gives.
Considering how new this technology is, ways for businesses to benefit from it are still limited and subject to change, and there are still many queries that get no voice results from Google Home or Amazon Echo. But the technology is growing and getting smarter quickly. Over the next 5 years, the entire tech landscape could be entirely different from what it is now. Considering how popular Google Home and Amazon Echo are predicted to be, businesses taking advantage of the new development might get a good head start. The rank of your website on Google search results will be more important with the voice system, since only one website is read out. The key is to ensure that it’s yours.
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