Optimizing your business listings for voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, Google Assistant, and Microsoft Cortana has become critical for local businesses to improve their visibility and reach. According to a recent study by Insider Intelligence, it is estimated that 123.5 million US adults will use voice assistants at least once per month in 2022. Although privacy concerns have slowed the adoption of voice assistants, conversational searches are becoming more widespread with the advent of advanced technologies such as ChatGPT.
It is noteworthy that while voice assistants leverage chatbot technology, they still rely on business directories to fetch information. Therefore, businesses should ensure that their business listings are optimized for voice searches across these directories to maximize their visibility.
The major directories used by popular voice assistants include Google Maps and Google Business Profile for Google Assistant, Yelp for Siri, Yelp and TripAdvisor for Alexa, and Bing Places for Cortana. A detailed article on local voice search optimization can be found on the Local Marketing Institute website. https://localmarketinginstitute.com/local-voice-search/
Here are the five key directories that local businesses should focus on for voice search optimization:
- Google My Business Listing: Businesses should claim and optimize their Google My Business Listing by visiting the website and verifying ownership. If the business is not local, it can be added to Google Maps by right-clicking on the map and selecting "add your business" from the dropdown.
- Apple Maps Business Listing: Businesses should claim and optimize their Apple Maps Business Listing by visiting the website and following the registration process.
- Bing Places Business Listing: Businesses should claim and optimize their Bing Places Business Listing by visiting the website and verifying ownership.
- Yelp Business Listing: Businesses should claim and optimize their Yelp Business Listing by visiting the website and following the verification process.
- TripAdvisor Business Listing: Businesses should claim and optimize their business on TripAdvisor by visiting the website and verifying ownership.
It is advisable for businesses to avoid paying third-party vendors for directory optimization as most directories require owner verification. Instead, investing a few minutes in optimizing listings on the top directories on the internet can yield significant returns.
To ensure effective optimization, businesses should ensure that their business information is consistent and accurate across all directories. They should also update their listings regularly with relevant information and high-quality images. Additionally, engaging with reviews, both positive and negative, can help build a positive reputation and increase customer engagement.
In conclusion, businesses should invest time in optimizing their business listings for voice assistant searches to improve their online visibility and reach potential customers.