- Two in five consumers own devices with voice assistants, but 60% never use them to browse and even fewer use them to make purchases, according to a new study by Episerver whose findings were made available in a news release. While 35% of consumers own smartwatches, 66% never browse on them and 70% never purchase using them, the group said.
- Episerver's research found that more established technology like smartphones have gained a foothold with consumers. About three-quarters of all consumers use their smartphones to browse and 57% make purchases on them. Among these consumers, 29% say they use smartphones to browse for purchases daily and half browse weekly.
- Additional findings include that 59% of shoppers said they would be interested in using chat windows for online shopping assistance, and 57% have tried or would be interested in trying smart mirrors for in-store shopping. Forty percent have tried or are interested in augmented reality and virtual reality in their shopping experience. The 51% of consumers who didn't want to try new technologies said it's because they didn't improve their experiences.
Marketers are getting excited about voice search as the popularity of devices such as the Amazon Echo and Google Home grows, but the Episerver research underscores a few key points: one being that actual market penetration for this type of hardware is still fairly low, and the other being that true transactional voice — where consumers can purchase items simply by issuing commands — is not yet prevalent. For now, most marketers are dabbling with leveraging voice for providing product information or answering FAQs, but only businesses that offer similar, repeat purchases, such as pizza ordering, are currently capitalizing on the commerce potential of these platforms.
While most consumers have yet to try out devices with voice assistants or smartwatches, marketers should take note of the growing interest in emerging mobile technologies such as voice and also AR and VR, which can provide enhanced shopping experiences. Shoppers may be interested in tech-focused experiences, but as marketers begin to add these technologies to their strategies, they need to pay close attention to creating memorable and relevant content that makes shopping more convenient and engaging
In a separate study by Visa and PYMNTS, a digital publication covering payment technology, 80% of consumers reported a strong interest in using connected devices to make purchases, and more than 80% said connected devices save time and make purchases easier. Seventy-five percent of consumers said they had at least one connected device in addition to a smartphone, computer or tablet, such as a smartwatch or voice-controlled assistant. However, consumers reported that data security and privacy as top concerns when purchasing on the devices.
Brands should also consider how to best use technology-rich experiences in their marketing strategies to deliver more personalized shopping experiences. Forty-three percent of consumers report being more likely to purchase from companies that personalize experiences, and 48% said they would use smart re-ordering services through in-home sensors, according to Accenture data.