While Siri, the voice recognition software on new iPhones, may seem to be a great feature for the user, it may not be the golden child for website SEO. This is due in part to how Siri works. IPhone 4S users can ask, for example, “Where is a bookstore?” and within moments have a list of bookstores- all without needing to do traditional web search. While this may be a plus for the user, Siri’s automated process effectively bypasses pay per click advertisements and even the need to visit some websites.
Siri is not an app that you purchase, but rather an iPhone 4S smartphone feature. Its technology is actually still in beta, so it does have some limitations, the biggest of which is language support. Currently, you can only use Siri when you are in the US and use American English. There are options for UK English, Australian English, French and German but these languages do not allow you to search for business or locations on a map. It should also be noted that Siri only works with the following apps: Phone, FaceTime, music, mail, messages, search (Safari, Maps, Google), Find My Friends, Wikipedia, alarms, World Clock, Timer and the English only Math elements of Wolfram Alpha. Perhaps, the most interesting feature of Siri is that the more it is used the better it becomes. This is because Siri collects data then assimilates it for the betterment of the program.
With Siri’s potential, it is vital that site owners do all they can to enhance their mobile SEO. This is especially important as some web experts feel that 30% of all searches of all searches could have a local component by 2015. So if you want to be sure that your site is Siri and SEO mobile-friendly, here is what you need to do. (If you prefer, here at Page Progressive we can do it for you.)
- If you don’t have a mobile site already, now is the time to build one.
- Be sure your company’s physical address, phone number and hours of operation are prominently placed on your homepage.
- Be known beyond Facebook and Twitter. While these are probably the best known social media sites and certainly important to promoting your business, they are not the only options. In addition to social media, be sure to set up a business profile on review sites and directories. Some of these are Google Places, Yahoo Local, Bing Local, Yelp, Foursquare, Savings.com, CitySearch, Yellow Pages and Urbanspoon.
- Standout from the crowd by having your IT manager (or Page Progressive) by adding a Schema tag. A Schema tag allows your site to incorporate micro data such as local business, address, telephone number and business hours. This tweak, while it may seem insignificant, can have a big impact in helping your company to be found in a Siri search.
Siri appears to be here to stay. How will your website and business fair? The answer is up to you. Be sure your website is SEO mobile friendly so you can benefit from these advances in mobile technology.