Ok Google: How Do I Optimize My PPC Campaign for Voice Search?

Voice search is one of the fastest growing technologies that people are integrating into their lives. Considering that 42 percent of people think smart speakers are essential to daily life, it’s crucial that you adapt your digital marketing strategies to reach people using these voice search devices.

When it comes to your PPC campaign, you can take the necessary steps to help your business adapt to voice searches. In this post, we’ll provide you with six tips to optimize your PPC campaign for voice search.

Let’s get started!

What is voice search?

Before we dive into the tips, let’s briefly cover voice search and the technology that uses it.

Voice search technology allows users to verbally conduct searches by speaking into devices like Siri, Google Home, Alexa, and Cortana.

The unique thing to note about voice search is that users will generally ask questions into these devices. They will ask questions like “How tall is the Eiffel tower?” or “Where can I get my tires changed?” We’ll address this more in the tips below.

These devices will pull information from search engines to provide audiences with valuable content. A voice search device can also send links to content for users.

6 tips for optimizing your PPC campaign for voice search

If you want to optimize your PPC campaign for voice search, here are six tips to help get you on the right track.

1. Focus on long-tail keywords

When you run your PPC campaign, it’s always advised that you target long-tail keywords to reach valuable leads. Long-tail keywords are crucial for voice search, too. If you want to help your PPC ad appear in voice search results, you must use long-tail keywords.

Users pose questions when they conduct voice searches. They use more words than they do when they type in a query. For instance, someone may type “Diners with pancakes in Harrisburg,” but in a verbal search, they’ll say “Where can I find a diner that serves pancakes near me?”

When people conduct voice searches, they use phrases like who, what, where, why, when, and how. Consider how posing questions affects your long-tail keywords.

For voice search, you’ll want to include words like “for” and “to” because many users will use those phrases in their voice searches.

Revise your long-tail keywords and see if there are ways you can expand upon them to adapt for voice search. You can take your current long-tail keywords and think about how someone would search for that keyword as a question.

For instance, if your keyword is “steakhouse in Harrisburg, PA,” some people may ask “Where can I find a steakhouse in Harrisburg, PA?”

 

2. Use natural language phrases and questions

One of the biggest keys to voice search is using natural language. It can’t be emphasized enough: people search differently verbally than they do in typed search queries. If you want to see success with voice search for your PPC campaign, you must incorporate natural language.

This is something as simple as the way people phrase and pose questions. In a typed search, they may put “Ice cream shops withsundaes,” but in a voice search, your audience might say “Ice cream shops that servesundaes.”

If you want to appear in voice results, you must consider how your audience verbally searches. Consider the language they may use, too. For instance, some call carbonated beverages “soda” while others call it “pop.”

When you optimize your PPC ads for natural language, you’ll produce better results from voice search.

3. Focus on local

Voice search is predominantly used to find local businesses. People search for restaurants, shops, and other locations with their devices. If you want to perform well in voice search, you must think local-first.

Try using long-tail location keywords to draw in users. Keywords like “ice cream shops near Harrisburg, PA” will draw in local customers that are specifically looking in a certain city or town.

When you optimize for voice search, include keywords about landmarks near your business. For instance, if you had a coffee shop near Central Park, you’d want to optimize for queries such as “Where can I find a coffee shop near Central Park?”

4. Know where your audience is in the buying cycle

Any time you create a marketing campaign, you must know where your audience is in the buying cycle. It’s important to know which keywords are better for your business.

The buying cycle is broken down into four stages:

  1. Awareness:Becoming aware of a problem or a need for a product
  2. Consideration:Looking at product options that can fulfill the need
  3. Evaluation:Evaluating each viable product to figure out which one works best
  4. Purchase:Buying the product

These are the stages people go through when purchasing a product. People who are at the awareness stage are just starting to recognize a need for a product, so they don’t want to see material that aims at conversion. At the awareness and consideration stage, you want to provide your audience with valuable information that educates them about your product.

At the evaluation and purchase stage, you’ll want to dazzle your audience and convince them to convert. Companies will provide their audience with reviews/testimonials and throw in special offer coupons to get the conversion.

So, how does this factor into voice search queries?

Generally, people who ask “who” or “what” questions are at the beginning of the buying cycle. They’re at the awareness stage, where they’re trying to learn about something or find more information.

People who use voice search to ask “when” and “where” questions are closer to conversion. They’re looking for things like businesses, business hours, and important information to find the product they need.

For PPC, you’ll want to focus on bidding on phrases with “when” and “where” because these are leads that are more likely to convert. You can still bid on “what” and “who” phrases, but you’ll want to keep your bid amount low, so you can still get a good return on investment (ROI) with your “when” and “where” keywords.

5. Include ad extensions

When you create a PPC ad, you have the option to add ad extensions. These are features that enhance your PPC ad to draw in more interested leads. For voice search, you’ll want to optimize your PPC ads with these extensions.

One important extension is the call extension. This allows you to add your phone number to your ad so leads can call your business. When users conduct a voice search, they can quickly access your contact information and call your business.

You can see a list of AdWords ad extensions here.

6. Optimize your site for mobile

If you haven’t already, you must adapt your site to perform well on mobile. People are going to visit your mobile site more due to voice search queries.

When users conduct a voice search, the device they use will often send them a link to the information. Using Google Assistant, devices like Siri and Google Home can send links to information that users can click on.

Many users will click on the link via their mobile devices. If your site isn’t optimized for mobile, you’ll lose these leads.

By making your site mobile friendly, you’ll see better results with your voice search PPC campaign. You’ll attract leads to your page and get them interested in your business.

Start optimizing your PPC plan for voice search today

As technology changes, you must adapt your digital marketing strategy to meet those changes. Voice search is going to become a prominent part of people’s daily lives, so it’s crucial that you adapt your PPC campaign to perform well in voice searches.

Have any other PPC voice search tips? Share them in the comments below!