Capgemini – Voice Assistants set to Revolutionize Commerce

by January 11, 2018 0 comments

Capgemini’s Digital Transformation Institute has lately released a new report with the title, “Conversational Commerce: Why Consumers Are Embracing Voice Assistants in Their Lives,” that shows how consumers are using voice assistants and the opportunities this creates for businesses to connect with their customers.

The report, which surveyed more than 5,000 consumers in the US, UK, France and Germany, found that voice assistants will become a dominant mode of consumer interaction over the next three years, with shoppers who use the technology willing to spend 500% more than they currently do via this mode of interaction.

Voice assistants will revolutionize e-commerce

Consumers are developing a strong preference for interacting with companies via voice assistants. The research found that today around a quarter (24%) of respondents would rather use a voice assistant than a website.

However, in the next three years, this figure will rise to 40%. Close to a third – 31% – said they will prefer a voice assistant interaction to visiting a shop or a bank branch, compared to 20% today.

Voice assistant users are currently spending 3% of their total consumer expenditure via voice assistants, but this is expected to increase to 18% in the next three years, reducing the share of physical stores (45%) and websites (37%).

While streaming music and seeking information remains the most popular usages for voice assistants today, over a third of respondents (35%) have also used them to buy products such as groceries, homecare and clothes.

Currently, 28% of users have already used a voice assistant to make a payment or send money, but 44% of users have expressed interest in using voice assistants for banking transactions as more smart speakers enable functions such as credit card payments via voice.

Consumers are highly satisfied with the voice assistant experience

Consumers who use voice assistants are very positive about their experience, with 71% being satisfied with their voice assistant. In particular, 52% of consumers cite convenience, the ability to do things hands-free (48%), and automation of routine shopping tasks (41%) as the biggest reasons why they prefer using voice assistants over mobile apps and websites.

The ability for the voice assistant to understand their human user is also critical; 81% of users want the voice assistant to understand their diction and accent. The report also revealed that voice assistants are most popular among 33-45-year-olds, while close to 1 in 5 (17%) have an annual pre-tax household income of more than $100K.

Voice assistants will yield concrete benefits for retailers and brands

Brands who provide good voice assistant experiences will generate more business and positive word-of-mouth communication. The report found that 37% of voice assistant users would share a positive experience with friends and family, and even 28% of current non-users would want to transact more frequently with a brand following a positive experience. This equates to serious potential financial gain, as consumers are willing to spend 5% more on a brand following a good experience with a voice assistant.

Research Methodology

Capgemini’s Digital Transformation Institute surveyed over 5,000 consumers in the US, the UK, France and Germany. The quantitative research was complemented with focus group discussions with consumers from each country, conducted virtually. The survey – as well as the focus group discussions – had a healthy mix of demographics and user/non-user persona.

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