Siri and Alexa are Changing Your Digital Marketing
Siri, What is SEO?
If you’ve been turned on to the importance of digital marketing, you’ve been introduced to search engine optimization, SEO, the art of matching what you have to offer, with the right people who are looking for your products.
SEO became necessary when consumers started searching the world wide web with search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. The SEO game has had many big changes through its time; as Google realized that its bots were picking up keywords in posts and pages that had nothing to do with those keywords. For example, a car company could use the trending word “snow” to gain attention though the page had nothing to do with snow. This drove Google and other search engines to change their formulas for providing search results. Engines make these large changes every few years in order to even the playing field and smaller back-end changes that make SEO the marketing mystery it is.
Voice-activated assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Home are, at the heart, search engines. They have moved SEO from screens to silent devices that wait for your next command. While they simplify our lives by keeping track of our calendars and pumping our playlist with a quick command, they have also changed the way search engines work.
In the early days of SEO, you know, 10 or so years ago, if you were looking for a bottle of turmeric extract, you would go to a search engine and type in turmeric extract, get results, and decide which were most relevant to you. This is why having a great site and content was so important.
Alexa, What Have You Changed?
Now, however, voice-activated assistants don’t require typing, they use your voice. They also use geolocation and preferences. The modern request for turmeric extract comes as “Alexa, where can I get turmeric extract?” and the answer will be based on ratings of products available in the local area. It is also possible that the results will include a recommendation for an online order (especially with Amazon’s Alexa).
The change here is two-fold. First, you need to think like your customers. When they ask for your product, what words will they use? Turmeric is not only an extract used for its health benefits, it is also a spice used in cooking. Clearly the intent of the user must be determined by voice-activated assistants. If a search history includes a lot of recipes, chances are Siri would recommend a well-performing recipe. It may be tempting to use verbiage that bridges the divide between the spice and the extract but SEO is also about relevance of the search results so our advice is to position your extract in a way that is useful to those looking for it for the health benefits and accept that the culinary audience is not worth chasing.
The other consideration is that you are not only up against local competitors in a search, but also the dizzying number of online retailers including the big guys. While it is certainly something to be concerned with, this should not be your focus. Like understanding that the culinary audience is not the best fit for your store when you’re selling nutritionals, understanding your differences and pointing them out is what will help you here. Sure, anyone can order a bottle of supplements from a faceless distributor and have it at their door in a matter of days, but there is a significant benefit to visiting with the local store who can help determine the best formulation for the best results.
This part of the optimization process should excite you. Sure, there is some pressure to create something that attracts customers, but who better to create that message than you?! No no one knows your business better. Read our blog on how to do this well and then start writing! Screenless SEO means that you can use conversational tone, just like you talk, because that’s how your customers are going to be asking for you.
We hear you. You’re not a writer. You’re not even much of a marketer. You’re running a business. We get it. We want to help. It’s what our Marketing Coaches do.