August 9, 2016

How eCommerce Can Shape Up To Take Advantage Of Voice Search

ecommerce and voice search

The need to speed up internet searches and to make search queries more precise and easy to communicate has resulted in the rising popularity of voice searches.  More and more people who face paucity of time are turning to voice searches. The rapid rise in its popularity is evident from the research results that indicate the frequency of using voice search has increased among fifty percent customers than what it used to be just a year ago.

The time is not far when the method of texting to input search queries would become a passé because of the great strides made in text to speech technologies. In this method, customers simply talk to the devices like computers and mobile phones to communicate with the search engines to register a specific search query. This has made it easy to continue searches even when you are on the go with faster access to information. How this change in user behaviour impacts the e-commerce business and what should be the measures of optimising it to match with the changing behaviour and expectations of customers has been discussed in this post.

The need for two-way communication

The mobile internet has already allowed shoppers to engage in shopping on the go that has eventually given rise to a new branch of commerce which is known as m-commerce or mobile commerce. Retailers are eager to take advantage of this new found avenue of business that breaks away from the confines of computers and laptops.  Retailers are now faced with the challenge of comprehending customer likes and dislikes more deeply as people can now engage in shopping 24×7 without caring for the clock. In order to increase customer engagement, retailers are now inclined to develop a two-way communication strategy.

Widespread use of chat apps

The two-way communication strategy that e–commerce stores have successfully implemented is evident in the numerous chat apps that have been part of e- commerce platforms.  You must have seen the pop-up boxes that appear time and again on the bottom right-hand side of web pages when you log on to any e-commerce website that invites you to start chatting with the store person. You can now chat with the store person in the same way as you have been doing in any brick and mortar store. Now you can mix the traditional texting with the voice technology to enhance your experience of interaction.

Same SEO tactics

Despite the popularity of voice searches, the fundamental SEO techniques based on text searches are still relevant for e-commerce platforms and voice searches. Content is still the king in order to rank well in the search results. For voice searches, the same tactics that were used for optimising text searches are still very relevant.

  • The content should be created with a defined purpose that should be easily identifiable by both users and search engines.
  • Complete information should be provided in the content that has to be supported by meaningful external links.
  • Emphasis has to be given to convey the meaning of the content in a very intimate way keeping away from the lure of focusing on keywords.
  • Avoid keyword stuffing but concentrate of using important terms with optimum repetition according to its importance.

Making e-commerce sites compatible with voice searches

E-commerce sites now face the challenge of optimising the platforms to get tuned with the changes in user behaviour that results from the switch over from text to voice mode. Although search analytics are still based on text searches there are ways to optimise e-commerce platforms to make it more relevant for voice searches. Start using relevant analytical data collected from the traditional text searches and chart out an action plan as detailed below.

Track on site search behaviour – Concentrate on user behaviour patterns that emerge from on-site searches by banking on the data captured by the Analytics tool that you use. This will enable you to enhance user experience by improving content, re-positioning it and add new services to the site. This will also ensure that the site becomes highly effective for your target audience that relies on voice searches.

Respect the demographics of your audience – Matching user needs with specific user experience that is captured by the demographics of the target audience holds the key to success in responding to voice searches.  Make the content most relevant to the audience and pitch it effectively so that viewer engagement is enhanced that translates into sales.

Fast e-commerce experience – Prompt presentation of the right content instantly would be the befitting response to the voice searches because people expect speedy response. The speed of delivering content is directly related to the gains that can be reaped from e-commerce and voice searches.

Friendlier user experience – While it is mandatory for e-commerce platforms to have mobile presence on handheld devices to give users the best of responsive experience, it is equally important to provide easy access to the right information. Majority of voice searches are made on the move when users expect immediate attention to their needs and there is no room to compromise on this aspect. The faster the correct information is served, the higher is the prospect of sales.

For your audience only – Make sure that your e-commerce website is sort of dedicated website for the particular genre of audience which could make it look quite exclusive. Focus on your audience only and do not be carried away by the lure of attracting more traffic with less worth.

Robust communication support – Establish a robust two-way communication system that is effectively manned by trained staff to provide round the clock service.

From available data it is seen that customers who use the chat facility on e-commerce sites have almost five times more chances of making a purchase. The right mix of two-way communication and techniques of optimisation of e-commerce sites provides great hope for improving sales by capturing the benefits of technological advancement that influences customer behaviour.

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