Voice search has been the hottest trend in marketing over the past few years. With the rise in usage, healthcare marketers are scrambling to figure out how to leverage this new medium in their strategy. But first, it’s important to know the fundamental difference between voice search and voice assistance before pitching this in your next marketing meeting.

Voice Search = When a user is looking for an answer to a question. (e.g., “Hey Siri, what are some local delis that are still open?”)

Voice Assistance = When a user wants a voice assistant to perform an action. (e.g., “Hey Google, set a timer for 30 minutes.”)

Where Home Assistants Get Their Data

Did you know that each voice device gets their data from a different source? That means your voice optimization strategy will need a multipronged approach.

For example, when users are looking for information about local healthcare clinics in their area, results may differ depending on your ranking on different search engines and directories.

  • Amazon Alexa = Yelp
  • Siri = Apple Maps
  • Google Home = Google Maps
  • Cortana = Bing

How to Optimize Your Citations/Listings

If you’re not currently working with a healthcare SEO agency, then you’ll need to start diverting a majority of your marketing efforts towards optimizing your citations and review strategy.

For those marketers who are unfamiliar with SEO jargon, citations are any business listing that references your NAP (name, address, and phone). Citations are often referred to as listings. These listings can be general business directories (Yelp, Yellow Pages, etc.) or search engine business directors (Google My Business, Bing Places, etc.).

There are three important factors to consider when creating new listings.

  1. Accuracy
  2. Relevancy
  3. Quantity

When auditing and creating new citations, make sure you maintain accurate information by using exact match copy/paste method with your business name, phone number, and address.

There are about five must-have places to list your business, but in general, try to list your business on relevant websites. For example, if you’re running a local pharmacy, you’ll want to list your business NAP in healthcare-specific directories.

Don’t just stop at five or 10 citations, keep going! Websites with the most (relevant) citations tend to rank higher in voice search.

Why Reviews Matter for Rankings

It’s no secret that reviews can help users decide which business to patron. However, reviews also play an important role in how businesses rank in voice search. To succeed at review management, you must maintain a delicate balance between quantity and quality.

A great review strategy focuses on continuously generating five-star reviews with unique reviews from new users.

  • John McAlpin

    John McAlpin is SEO Director of Cardinal Digital Marketing. John leads the SEO strategy for Cardinal Digital Marketing, a digital marketing agency based in Atlanta, GA. Cardinal specializes in serving healthcare organizations across the United States to expand patient base and ignite business growth.

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