5 Local SEO Experts Share Voice Search and “Near Me” Predictions

local-seo-predictions

We spoke to 5 industry people, asking each of them 2 questions:

  1. how to optimize for "near me" and "nearby" searches
  2. what local SEO strategies could be tied into voice search

1. Ben Wynkoop

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Website: benwynkoop.com

Twitter: @benwynkoop1

1. As per Google Trends report, "Near me" or "Nearby" terms have increased since 2014. So, what actions do you suggest to optimize for these searches?

When using voice search on the Google search mobile app for “personal injury attorneys near me,” Google reveals the method it uses to serve local search results: businesses within a certain radius.

One search showed attorneys within 6 miles and a second search returned attorneys within 8 miles.

Naturally having multiple Google My Business locations in your market will give you a greater chance of ranking for "Near me" or "Nearby" terms, and in competitive niches like personal injury law, many firms have multiple listings, despite having 1 real location.

For local search results, follow 2 fundamental aspects of local SEO: consistently get new Google reviews, and get properly listed across the web.

For organic search results, add data that helps Google understand your location: NAPs, structured data (I prefer JSON-LD), and geo-tag images.

2. Can you please suggest some local SEO strategies to take advantage of Voice Search?

Several strategies should be implemented to optimize for multiple providers of voice search.

users use
voice
search to
ask questions
For Google, follow my recommendations above for "Near me" or "Nearby" terms.

Apple’s SIRI serves Yelp listings when using voice search to find a local business, so ensure your Yelp listing is fully filled out and constantly acquires new reviews by asking satisfied customers who are active Yelpers.

I have been testing Amazon Echo over the past month and the experience has emphasized how voice search will further develop to act as a personal assistant. Therefore, voice search terms are often not the short keywords people type in a search box e.g. “personal injury attorney Orange County.” Instead, users often use voice search to ask questions. So, be sure to create content that answers frequently asked questions.

2. Dan Leibson

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Twitter: @DanLeibson

Website: www.localseoguide.com

1. As per Google Trends report, "Near me" or "Nearby" terms have increased since 2014. So, what actions do you suggest to optimize for these searches?

I performed a large, data driven study, “Near Me” Local SEO Ranking Factors.

I think it's important to make sure your link profile anchor text has the city, and that you are using traditional SEO elements to optimize for near me (<title> tags, internal links with near me in anchor text etc.).

2. Can you please suggest some local SEO strategies to take advantages on Voice Search?

Personally, I think the hype around voice search is overblown.

It's a great topic, and a fascinating technology, but I think the format of results and interface leave a lot to be desired for researching a local business.

The adoption rate is also pretty low.

Right now, just do normal Local SEO stuff and you will likely rank well for local voice search queries.

3. Kevin Mullett

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Twitter: @kmullett

Website: www.marketsnare.com

1. As per Google Trends report, "Near me" or "Nearby" terms have increased since 2014. So, what actions do you suggest to optimize for these searches?

Regardless of query terms, consider how Google identifies local or hyper local query intent and context. Now improve the quality and signals in content and on-site for the searcher and Google to that end.

How? Provide content that is personalized and relevant to your location.

Use local vernacular and references in your content. Make sure your NAP is correct and unified across all quality listings.

And build content and relationships that earn quality backlinks and citations from other local websites.

2. Can you please suggest some local SEO strategies to take advantages on Voice Search?

One way to improve voice search visibility is to build content that matches the context and intent of common spoken queries, which can be easily or directly be answered and also fits with your business, industry, and location.

In short, start by answering the question, so long as the question isn’t so easy a machine can answer or calculate it.

4. Matt Janaway

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Twitter: @MJanaway

Website: Marketinglabs.co.uk

1. As per Google Trends report, "Near me" or "Nearby" terms have increased since 2014. So, what actions do you suggest to optimize for these searches?

Be consistent across every listing you have online. This way, Google will understand the accuracy of the data.

Try to gain offline traction, this will help with encouraging searchers to look for your brand – the more brand searches, the better.

Also, keep an eye on the structured data on your about and contact pages.

Lastly, try to earn some local links from genuine local businesses. These can be really useful to help generate local traffic from local search terms.

2. Can you please suggest some local SEO strategies to take advantages on Voice Search?

Build genuine reviews of your business, the services you offer and your product.

Intent is important here, so build your content around the intentions of searchers using voice. If you can match their intent, it will go a long way to helping you take advantage of voice searchers.

5. Tom Clark

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Twitter: @ConvertDigital1

Website: https://www.convertdigital.co.uk/

1. As per Google Trends report, "Near me" or "Nearby" terms have increased since 2014. So, what actions do you suggest to optimize for these searches?

With people using the near me and nearby phrase more in their search queries, I will actually not attempt to hone in on the keyword perse.

To me, this data just shows us there is more importance on local SEO and achieving your obvious local keywords. I believe sites that rank well for these obvious local terms will also rank well for near me and nearby terms.

So if you are to conduct competitor analysis and reverse engineer competitor's strategies, then you will have a greater chance of ranking for these near me/nearby terms too.

2. Can you please suggest some local SEO strategies to take advantages on Voice Search?

I do also think that businesses should be aware of the address they are listing on their Google My Business and on their site more than ever now.

Being at the outskirts of the target location will not work in your favour.

Aim for consistency in and clean up the footprint of any old addresses you may have listed as your business address when citation building.

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* Adapted lead image: Public Domain Dedication (CC0) Public Domain, pixabay.com via getstencil.com

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