A Voicebot report back in 2018 revealed the number of smart speaker owners stood at 50 million in the United States alone. The same number shot up to nearly 90 million users in 2020! The huge increase in the voice tech market came as no surprise as businesses around the globe observed how a large user base uses voice tech for almost anything – shopping, finding answers to common queries, seeking customer support, keeping track of the day, scheduling meetings and so much more.
Naturally then, voice technology has begun to disrupt the world of business and small business owners are looking at leveraging the tech for business growth.
1. Getting ahead of the competition
The pandemic has been very rough on small businesses and a lot of them have faced financial crunch in the past year. So they are understandably restrained when it comes to investing resources in developing voice apps or Alexa skills.
But isn’t it a great deal if putting in a little money gives your small business a sharp edge against the competitors? The convenience the users get while interacting with your business through their voice assistants or your apps can potentially increase its brand value manifolds.
2 A more affordable way to be available 24×7
A smart skill or a voice app can respond to the users’ commands and requests at any time. You don’t need to have the actual customer support staff for the same. Moreover, a lot of repetitive tasks can be automated efficiently with AI imitating a human mind so well.
This means voice tech is a small business owner’s most affordable means to maximize customer satisfaction while they are expanding the user base.
3. Personalization is the key to business growth in 2021
In 2021, more businesses will opt to personalize their approach to their audience. In doing so, they will only showcase information that would appeal to their consumers.
According to a Gartner study, smart personalization engines can be a great tool to identify and act on potential customer intent. If a small business can do this right, they are in for increased profits by up to 15%!
Apps and smart skills provide data that is super useful to understand the ideal user better.
For example, you can analyze the number of times a particular kind of voice search query brought the user to your business page. This gives you insight into the search and buying patterns of the user.
4. Voice search optimization is an easy way to get more leads
The pervasiveness of voice assistants has begun to reshape consumer behavior massively.
According to a PWC report, more than 70% of consumers would rather use their voice assistants to search for the things they want to buy. Not just that, users are also finding it more convenient to research the market for their desired offerings or engaging with businesses online with a simple command.
Thus, voice search has begun a marketing trend revolving around voice search optimization. If a business hasn’t updated its online information to meet the voice search optimization parameters, it is going to miss out on all the potential customers who use voice search for making purchases.
5. Voice assistants and apps make business operations more efficient
Small businesses are always looking for ways to make their operations more efficient. After all, business efficiency rewards the leaders with more savings in terms of time and costs.
Thus, many business leaders have adopted voice technology for their internal operations too. According to Capgemini research, 76% of these organizations were very happy with the ROI voice tech gives them.
The AI used in voice apps and smart speakers can help businesses enhance their operational efficiency. For example, it can take care of task tracking, time management, scheduling meetings, setting up reminders, etc.
The future of voice technology looks very promising and the tech industry isn’t the only industry dominated by voice trends. The marketing ecosystem too is heavily influenced by how smart speakers are changing consumer behavior at large. If you, as a small business owner, are planning to take some bold steps in 2021, consider investing in building a voice app, optimizing the business information for voice search, and tapping into the ever-growing market of Alexa skills as your first steps towards business growth.
Tapan Patel is a co-founder at Third Rock Techkno, a dynamic IT services company in the US. With a humble beginning 7 years ago, he has gained expertise in bringing together the best teams and shaping them into a loyal, efficient workforce. Tapan is an avid reader and he is passionate about sharing his leadership insights with global communities. His writings have been featured in established blogs like Simple Programmer, Real-leaders.com and more. LinkedIn, Twitter, Website
Smart speaker stock photo by Zapp2Photo/Shutterstock