A new survey on smart speaker usage indicates widespread use. But the sample was small, and so, the debate continues.
Nearly nine in 10 consumers who have made a purchase via smart speaker say they have opted for a product recommended by their virtual assistant, rather than stick with their preferred brand. And millennials were more likely than older shoppers to go with a recommended product.
Technology publisher The Information rattled the digital sector with a report suggesting that the vast majority of smart speaker owners have not used the devices to make purchase, and the few who had tried voice-controlled shopping were unlikely to do it again.
A May 2018 Voicebot and Voysis survey found that nearly 21% of US internet users said they would ask their voice assistant for in-store help, while 17.6% would use their voice assistant to self-checkout.
Along with visual search, chatbots, and augmented and virtual reality, voice commerce has been on retailers' radar as the next big thing. None of those emerging technologies—despite varying degrees of consumer adoption—has pulled ahead of the pack, though.
According to a recent NetElixir survey, roughly 40% of US voice assistant users would welcome sponsored content or product suggestions if they were relevant to them.
More people are leaning on voice-enabled devices for routine tasks, like research. But when it comes to voice commerce, most still prefer to shop the traditional way.
Researching products is the most popular way consumers use voice-enabled devices to shop, according to a Narvar survey. But that’s not the only way consumers are using the technology.
While most consumers currently use smart speakers for mundane tasks like turning on lights, conversational commerce has captured the attention of marketers for its potential.
No surprise: Alexa might not be the most impartial shopping tool. While this may not be the biggest problem facing brands upping their digital presence, as voice searching—and purchasing—becomes more widespread, voice-search rankings could be more of an issue.