Retail Revolution: Voice-Powered Commerce


Shop ’til you drop – now a real possibility with voice-powered technology

Voice-powered commerce has been a game-changer in the world of shopping. This technology is currently contributing billions of dollars to the retail industry and that number is only predicted to increase.

voice-powered commerce

Taking Advantage of this Technology

According to research, roughly half of all voice search users are looking for product information.1 Due to this, many brands are now starting to incorporate conversational marketing into their strategy.

For instance, retailers are integrating conversational marketing into their brand’s platform to help ensure a better experience for all customers. Since the conversations occur at real-time, this marketing approach creates a more authentic experience for shoppers.2

Benefits Galore

The following list explains the rise in retails’ voice-powered commerce.

  • Hands free
  • Personalized results
  • Easy for repeat customers

Voice-Powered Commerce On The Rise

Some trends come and go, but researchers are convinced that the voice-search revolution is just beginning, especially among the younger generations. In 2018, $2.1 billion of retail revenue was generated from voice-powered commerce. However, this number is expected to greatly increase as voice recognition software continues to improve.

While retailers continue to brainstorm new and innovative ways to include voice-powered commerce, revenue generated from this will only continue to increase. In fact, in the year 2022 it’s estimated that $40 billion of retail revenue will be from voice shopping.1  

In-Store Shopping… A Thing of the Past?

Retailers have added voice-activated devices to their shopping platform to make shopping a more simple process. For example, Walmart has officially partnered with Google to offer its shoppers the option of voice-activated groceries. The simplicity of interacting with voice devices is starting to change the way people make shopping lists.4


Negatives?

Smart speakers have become increasingly popular in our community. However, not everyone is using them for their shopping capabilities. In fact, according to research conducted by The Information, only about 2% of people who own an Amazon Alexa use it to make a purchase in their first 8 months.5

However, what’s the reasoning behind this? Privacy, challenges, and lack of visuals may just be why smart speakers aren’t more popular for commerce purposes.

Lack of Visuals

Have you ever bought something without looking at it? Probably not, and that’s because shopping is a very visual activity. Consumers depend on their sight to determine if they like the product. In other words, voice shopping doesn’t allow customers to visually search for potential products. This is one of many reasons why 62% of shoppers prefer shopping in a store.5

Another downfall that comes with a lack of visuals is that it becomes difficult for shoppers to compare products. According to a recent Forbes article, “Customers cited difficulties such as troubles with searching for and comparing products when using this option with retailers.” 6

Fears of Big Brother

With technology in general comes a fear about privacy or lack of privacy. In this day and age, there is a constant worry about one’s personal information. Similarly, shoppers utilizing assistant platforms have these same fears. According to a recent study, 41% of virtual assistant users admit to having concerns about privacy and passive listening.7

Despite the high number of satisfaction for these devices by its users, the mistrust issues may continue to persist.


Technology Enhances Shopping

The National Retail Federation highlights that more and more customers are now embracing technology to better their shopping experience. In fact, many consumers crave a futuristic shopping experience, especially Gen Z. Since technology is such a massive part of our daily lives, it only makes sense that it would also be a part of the retail experience.

AR Transforms Retail Experience

Augmented Reality provides unique abilities such as in-store navigation and product testing. Retailers who have implemented AR have made shopping a convenient process for every customer, while simultaneously modernizing direct marketing.

AI: Futuristic Shopping

A lot of the grunt work in customer service is now being turned over to Artificial Intelligence. Retailers are taking advantage of chatbots to deliver great customer service. Brands are also using AI to manage their inventory so that they have enough product in stock. In addition to this, an increasing number of stores are using AI algorithms to determine what size clothing is most demanded by shoppers.

Voice-Powered Commerce

Individuals who own a smart speaker are the most likely to be voice shoppers. Food and household goods are two of the most popular item categories purchased by voice. One of the hardest things the voice-powered commerce industry is going to have to overcome is the lack of visuals users encounter while shopping. 

Seeking An Agency?

Finding the right agency to help your brand embrace new technology doesn’t have to be a difficult task. Agency Spotter helps you discover the agencies that are qualified in the service you desire.  


References

Martech Advisor | 2 Drift | 3 ClickZ Marketing Technology Transformation  | 4 CNBC | 5 Total Retail | Forbes | Tech Crunch | Retail Dive | ANBMedia

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Nicole Schuster

Marketing Specialist at Agency Spotter
Nicole is a Marketing Specialist at Agency Spotter. She graduated summa cum laude from The University of Georgia with a degree in Public Relations and is looking forward to diving deeper into the marketing and startup world. In her free time, Nicole enjoys cheering on the Georgia Bulldogs and cuddling with her dog.
Nicole Schuster