Google Wants to Make Audio Content Searchable

Audio Content Searchable
Audio Content Searchable

Google and the other search engines aim to revolutionize the way Internet users seek and find information every day. The indisputable leader has succeeded in its bet and has been widening the gap with these competitors for years. However, it still struggles to reference audio content in search results. This shouldn’t last.

Referencing audio content

In a strong competitive environment where each company must adopt a strategy of differentiation and support prospects and customers in their understanding of the product or service, content marketing has become a pillar of communication and a magnet for developing sales. Blog articles, white papers, video, infographics… All these communication media are also very interesting in a SEO for Artists natural referencing strategy.

Audio content such as podcasts, or even interviews, was not a priority for the search engine. It is now quite difficult to reference its audio content and make it both understandable and attractive to search engines.


Googlebot’s and other crawlers are unable to understand this type of content. Like videos, only humans are able to grasp the subject matter and the audio and video content. To reference its audio content, it is therefore relevant to think about adding content that is understandable to it. For that, just remember that Google and alternative search engines are text obsessives. The analysis of the content of a page or a website often boils down to the analysis of the text present on this page.

If you want to reference audio content, you must therefore add a text transcription of your audio content. Your pages will therefore contain semantics and key phrases that will add value in the eyes of Google. In addition, you leave the choice to Internet users to read or listen to your content, which is very positive for retaining them on your website.

Google and the SEO of audio content

If Google gives pride of place to websites, images and videos (YouTube of course!), it shuns audio files and podcasts which are often only accessible via dedicated platforms such as iTunes.


A Google team is tasked with contributing to the accessibility and visibility of audio content and podcasts. If the ubiquity of audio content is not to be proven, audio content remains difficult to index and find compared to a website thanks to search engines.

This objective is made possible thanks to different solutions via several Google services and tools:

  • A section dedicated to audio files on the SERP such as images, videos or books currently
  • A better audio content consumption experience between different devices: computer, smartphone, Google Home, tablet…
  • A better understanding of audio content to deliver the most relevant content

Some of these solutions are already available in the United States, in addition to the podcasts available on the Google Play Store.

The explosion of podcasts

For several months now, we have been witnessing the strong comeback of podcasts. Traditional radio shows, web radios, mood posts, educational or entertaining content… Podcasts have become the new fashionable content for a young and connected target, in search of lost time.


Young people haven’t abandoned podcasts in favor of videos. This audio content, available 24 hours a day on smartphones, tablets and even offline, can be consumed anywhere and anytime. With more nomadic habits and consumption of content close to overdose sometimes, Internet users are often happy to be able to access a new type of content (provided it is qualitative).

Often less time-consuming and requiring less attention than videos and TV shows, audio content is also easier to access, especially in transport. Audio content is also much easier to produce compared to video, for example.


There are few recent studies on the consumption of podcasts in France. However, American studies show that this new mode of consumption has taken an important place in recent years. Here are some numbers on podcasts:

  • Number of monthly listeners multiplied by 2 between 2013 and 2017
  • 65% of listeners started listening to podcasts less than 3 years ago
  • + 70% of advertising expenditure related to podcasts in 2 years
  • 44% of podcast listeners are Millennials (18-34 years old)
  • 33% of podcast listeners are between 35 and 54 years old

Source: The Podcast Explosion (Saint-Paul University)


To speak in a more contemporary way, to challenge an audience differently and to modernize its brand image, companies can take advantage of audio content and podcasts to communicate. It is not a question of creating an advertisement lasting long minutes. It is necessary to choose a relevant angle in order to enhance a company or an offer, in particular by telling a story. Long live storytelling!

In addition, by choosing to bet on podcasts, a company can leave the Internet user the choice of how he will consume the content. Just as a company can practice “guestblogging” or even buy incoming links to communicate, one can imagine that advertisers will be able to associate their message with creators of audio content with a relevant community for the brand.

After video SEO, audio SEO?

You probably thought about it when reading this article, but how to take advantage of this evolution of Google for this content format? How will Google choose the most suitable content according to a query? The podcast search engine will mainly rely on related content. Depending on your preferences, your recent listening and your activities, it will be able to determine which podcast would be the most relevant for each moment of the day. YouTube has built its success on its recommendation engine, why should it be any different for the audio format? As for the natural referencing of a website, Google has given instructions to podcasters who want to be visible from Google.

With the audio format referenceable by search engines, it will be necessary to think of a new way of making content and a new way of optimizing it for natural referencing. Google seems, once again in the search market, to be ahead of its competitors thanks to the already existing Google services. Ready to take the leap? A headset and a microphone and let’s go!Professional SEO agency and editorial agency supports you in your content creation and web referencing strategy.