Is it voiceover, voice-over or voice over?

This question has troubled me for years, I know, I clearly need to get a life. But seriously, what is the right way of writing what I do? Whilst putting together this website, the designer asked me which one to use, I advised to go with a mix of all three, that way we’ve covered all bases! Grammar gurus will be freaking at that!
You maybe asking, why is it important? Well, in a nut shell, to the average joe, its not massively important. It only becomes important and an issue whilst doing SEO for the website. The different variations – voiceover, voice-over and voice over mean you either have to pick one and target that for your SEO – and potentially miss out on searches for the other two, or cover all three, which then gets a little complicated and time consuming.
Having done a little research into the words voiceover, voice-over and voice over, heres what Ive found, just in case you’re interested….
  • Some people, mainly in America, forget this problem altogether and call the industry Voice Acting. I like that, but doesn’t work so well for SEO.
  • If you’re a little lazy, you may just call it VO or V/O…think we’re adding another level of complicatedness if I go with that, as doesn’t really help, just abbreviates.
  • The Oxford English Dictionary only show sthe hyphenated form, I should really take that as gospel, so that means we stick to voice-over.
  • The most searched term by clients is voice over – so, if thats what people are searching for, I should really take that spelling.
  • Lots of people, including many dictionaries, don’t even recognise the word voiceover, as proved above with the Oxford English Dictionary. Try typing voiceover into your phone, or word document, it will try and correct it.
I stopped the research there, mainly because you could do it ALL day long and not come up with a definitive answer, because we’re all different and say it how we want. One thing is for sure, voiceover is frowned upon in the grammar world in a big way, but I kinda like it.
Not forgotten about the continuation of the other post about studios, still got soundproofing and computers to do, its on the way.
If you need a voiceover or have any questions, do feel free to drop me a line here. And to hear some recent work, check out the voice over samples page.
Have a good day