SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Nov. 16, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- With more people going mobile-only and voice assistant usage expected to grow by 130% this year, we're entering a new era of communication where people are talking instead of typing. This shift, and the implications on the customer experience, are detailed in "The Rise of Voice," a new report by Invoca that highlights data from a survey of 1,000 U.S. adults who own in-home voice assistant devices, in addition to insights from over 50 million calls routed through Invoca's platform over the past year.
Voice device use is increasing rapidly — 45 million voice-assisted devices are now in use in U.S. homes, according to eMarketer — and people are using their voices to do more overall. Invoca's consumer survey found that 58 percent are using voice to accomplish tasks they used to do through typing or swiping, and one in four people said they are calling businesses more often. Invoca's analysis of 66 million calls also affirms the rise of voice: the company's platform data showed a 33 percent increase in the average number of calls per customer, per year, from 2014 to 2016.
"With the rise of voice, today's customer experience is undergoing a massive shift, much like it did when smartphones took hold a decade ago," said Gregg Johnson, CEO of Invoca. "From acquiring new customers and engaging with repeat buyers, to providing better customer support, there's an incredible amount of opportunity for businesses to drive more value from voice. For example, think about using AI to automatically understand buyer intent during a conversation, and then apply it in real-time to connect someone with the right representative or deliver a personalized offer."
"Voice is going to give rise to a whole host of data and intelligence that we can't even conceive of today. It will transform the customer experience, which is exciting to think about as a marketer," said Russell Bangert, Director of Digital Marketing at DISH. "Everyone wants to go to their favorite online store and have an experience that's made specifically for them. With innovations in voice and AI, this kind of personalized experience will become a reality for voice conversations between businesses and their customers."
"The intersection of voice and AI is giving rise to a whole new category of data that can be applied to every aspect of the customer experience - from marketing and sales to customer support," said Steve Loughlin, Partner at Accel. "We're incredibly excited about the opportunity this brings to companies like Invoca that are helping brands drive more revenue from conversations."
The Rise of Voice report shows that voice assistant interactions are influencing purchase decisions: 73 percent of people who own a voice-activated device have bought something directly through the device. Additionally, consumers still want to talk to a live company representative when they have complicated or personalized questions, and they seek a seamless phone call connection from their voice assistant to a person.
In addition to consumer survey findings, Invoca's report highlights proprietary data from Invoca's platform regarding call trends and advice for marketers navigating the new voice ecosystem.
Key findings from the report include:
As voice assistants grow, people use their voices more.
As people become accustomed to using their voices to accomplish tasks with their assistant, they are speaking more and typing less. Since owning a voice assistant device, people's voice habits are changing.
- 58 percent now use voice interactions to accomplish tasks they previously done by typing or swiping.
- 24 percent now make more phone calls to businesses.
Voice is the new user interface and purchase influencer.
Early adopters are using their voice instead of a "buy" button, and they are listening for recommendations instead of reading them. Information gathered through voice-based inquiries are impacting users' purchase decisions, even if they don't ultimately use their device to make a shopping transaction.
- 73 percent of people with voice assistants have made a purchase directly through the device.
- 39 percent of people said an interaction with a voice assistant influenced a purchase decision in the past month.
Human conversation still matters.
Voice assistants are still in their infancy, and the technology is not always completely accurate. When people don't get the information they need from these, they prefer to reach a human directly and expect the connection to be seamless.
- 76 percent said that if their voice assistant could have easily connected them to a human who could answer their question, they would have done that instead of an online search.
- 82 percent of people said the context of the conversation is important when communicating with businesses.
The next era of calls to business
Consumers are already talking to Siri and Alexa about things they intend to purchase, and businesses must be ready to pick up the conversation where voice assistants leave off. For the foreseeable future, human conversations — namely, phone calls — will continue to dominate complex or expensive customer interactions, such as taking out a mortgage or choosing a home security system.
- The top three marketing channels driving calls are mobile search (47 percent), desktop search (25 percent) and content or review sites (8 percent).
- The calls that do come from social sites last longer than those from any other source, at an average of 7 minutes.
- Mobile continues to dominate with 73 percent of all calls coming from mobile, and just 27 percent coming from landlines.
To view the complete report detailing the findings of the study visit http://go.invoca.com/ebook-lp-the-rise-of-voice.html
Invoca helps the modern marketer optimize for the most important step in the customer journey: the phone call. With Invoca's Voice Marketing Cloud, marketers can get granular campaign attribution to understand why customers areg calling, gain real-time intelligence about who's calling and analyze what's being said in conversations. Marketers can put this data to work directly in the Voice Marketing Cloud by automating the ideal customer experience before, during and after each call. With an ecosystem of over 30 technology partners, marketers can inject call intelligence into their existing technology stack, giving them the ability to orchestrate a true omnichannel customer journey. Invoca is backed by Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners, Accel Partners, Upfront Ventures, Rincon Venture Partners, Salesforce Ventures, and Stepstone.