Remember all those science-fiction movies where people talk to computers and then computers talk back? Well, today, it is not so much about sci-fi as it is about everyday life. According to voice search statistics, anyway.
In fact, voice technology has become so integrated with our day-to-day activities that 65% of smart speaker owners say that they can’t imagine life without it. Not only does voice tech enable millions of people around the world to multitask better but it is also changing the way we look at (and engage with) technology.
Just how fast has voice technology developed and how far has it penetrated our daily lives? Take a look at these stats to find out!
Top Voice Search Stats and Key Takeaways
- 40% of adults use voice technology every day.
- Around 30% of all searches will be done without a screen next year.
- 20% of mobile queries are, in fact, voice.
- Voice commerce sales reached $11.8 billion in 2018.
- 66.4 million US citizens own a smart speaker.
- 53% of smart speaker users are Millennials.
- The number of voice assistant users increased by 9.5% from last year.
- Siri is the most popular voice assistant.
- Google Assistant performed the best last year.
- Over 100 million devices with Alexa on board were sold last year.
General Voice Search Statistics
1.40% of adults use voice technology every day.
(Backlinko; Search Engine Watch)
This roughly translates to over a billion searches by voice carried out every month. According to a survey,13.8% have only used it once or twice in the past year, while 21% of respondents said that they use voice technology at least once a week. These figures may not seem like a lot, but this is quite a large number for tech that was only introduced 8 years ago.
2. 50% of all searches will be voice searches by 2020, Comscore says.
(DBS Interactive; Search Engine Land)
One of the most optimistic predictions regarding the future of voice tech has now been debunked. Nevertheless, according to an Adobe survey, 48% of respondents said they use voice technology for online searches. It’s not exactly 50%, but it’s close enough.
3. Around 30% of all searches will be done without a screen next year.
(Brafton; Adobe Blog; Quoracreative)
80% of users, on the other hand, say that they would use voice technology for more complex tasks if it was paired with a screen. According to voice search stats, visual elements and voice technology are the best possible combo, confirmed by the fact that smartphones are the most popular device for voice technology.
As many as 85% of respondents said they used voice technology on their smartphones, unlike 39% who reported using voice tech through smart speakers. On top of that, 60% of smartphone owners have tried voice searching at least once in the past year.
4. 20% of mobile queries are, in fact, voice.
What percentage of searches are voice? Back in 2017, Google reported that 20% of searches in Google Apps are voice as are a quarter of searches on Android devices. Seeing as to how the use of voice-activated tech has spread in the past two years, this figure is probably much higher today.
5. Almost 20% of all searches by voice are triggered by 25 keywords.
The main keywords usually consist of question words like “how” or “what” as well as adjectives, such as “best” and “easy.” According to data on voice search and SEO, over 70% of requests to Google Assistant are expressed in natural language and not the usual keywords people use when typing.
6. 25 to 49 year-olds are the most frequent users of voice technology.
Although 18–24-year olds are adopting voice technology at a faster rate, they aren’t the “heaviest” users. 59% of this age group use voice technology at least once a day, as opposed to the 65% of 25 to 49 year-olds who do the same, voice search trends indicate.
7. 91% of businesses are already investing in voice technology.
94% of the surveyed businesses plan to increase their investment in voice next year. Brands see the infinite potential of searches by voice and the use of voice technology with 66% of them saying that voice tech can increase revenue and 71% reporting that voice has improved user experience.
8. Funding for voice-oriented startups reached $30.6 million in 2016.
Judging by voice search predictions, funding for tech startups focusing on voice technology will reach $1.57 billion by the end of the year.
9. 41% of owners say talking to a smart speaker feels like talking to another person.
People see their voice-activated speakers not as a toy, but rather as an actual person. However, research shows that 74% of users prefer to talk to their voice assistant in the privacy of their own homes, saying that using their voice assistant in public “just looks weird.”
Why People Use Voice Search
10. 58% of consumers use voice-activated technology to find a local business.
Recent trends show that consumers increasingly turn to voice-activated technology to search for local businesses. In fact, 46% of these consumers say they regularly use voice technology to find a local business. Also, according to Google, “near me” searches for businesses have grown significantly over the past few years.
11. 54% of consumers would like to use voice devices to book a restaurant, voice search trends show.
When asked in what circumstances would consumers like to use search by voice for local businesses, 46% said that they would like to learn about prices in search results and 35% would make beauty or medical appointments through voice tech devices.
12. 65% of consumers use smart speakers while cooking.
62% of users said that they turn to a standalone speaker while multitasking as opposed to 12% who use a voice-activated search on smartphones while doing more tasks at once. 57% use smart speakers and 43% turn to mobile voice assistants while watching TV.
13. 52% of people use voice technology to get directions while driving.
(Search Engine Land)
51% of respondents said they use voice technology to make a phone call and 50% said they use it to send a text. Other uses of smart speakers include setting alarms (41%), checking the news (27%), and sending emails (17%).
14. One of the most common voice search commands on smart speakers is asking for music.
70% of owners use their smart speakers to ask for music, and 64% use them to get an update on the weather. 47% use it for online searches. We’ve come a long way from people using their voice assistants to ask silly questions. Today people turn to smart speakers to manage their finances, order food, and even book flights and hotels.
15. 45% of teens and 36% of adults wish they could order pizza by voice search.
43% of teens say that they use voice technology to call someone and 31% of them ask voice technology for help with their homework. Surprisingly, 13% use it to check the time.
16. 92% of consumers said that voice technology saves time.
(Search Engine Land)
People are happy with voice devices and assistants. As many as 79% of respondents agreed that voice technology contributes to their quality of life, while 62% say that they found information with voice search devices that they couldn’t otherwise.
Voice Technology and Commerce Statistics
17. Voice commerce sales reached $11.8 billion in 2018.
Voice shopping is expected to reach $40 billion by 2022. This is a huge number that retailers simply can’t ignore. Last year, there were only 39 connected support voice-based shopping apps, which shows that retailers need to update their offers and skills to keep up with evolving tech.
18. 22% of consumers use voice assistants when searching for a local product or service.
(Social Media Explorer)
Conducting a voice search via mobile devices is three times more likely to refer to local searches than text searches. Not only that but mobile searches by voice drive traffic with 32% of local searches.
19. 26% of smart speaker owners in the US have used voice technology to make a purchase.
Interestingly, 11.5% of consumers have used their smart speaker to purchase something at least once a month. This means that 5.44 million Americans shop with their voice-activated devices on a monthly basis. For comparison, 24% of people who shop online have used voice-activated virtual assistants on their smartphones.
20. When it comes to online shopping via voice-activated tech, researching products is the most common use.
51% of shoppers used voice to research products, while 36% used a voice assistant or voice devices to manage shopping lists. Around 30% of tracked packages and 22% of US shoppers say that they have used search assistants to buy something online. Finally, 17% used voice to record items.
21. 52% of owners of voice-activated technology would like to learn about deals and promotions from brands.
According to this study and general branding stats, 48% of respondents said that they would like to receive personalized tips from brands, and 42% would like to hear about upcoming events.
22. 25% of respondents say that they mostly buy household items through voice assistants.
(Search Engine Journal; PR Newswire)
The three most commonly purchased categories of products through voice search apps are groceries, entertainment, and electronics. So far, Amazon seems to have the biggest influence over consumers’ shopping decisions, as 85% of customers purchase the product Amazon suggests.
23. 27% of respondents said the best thing about shopping with voice assistants is that they do not need to use their hands.
(Search Engine Journal)
On the other hand, 31.72% of respondents said that they aren’t entirely comfortable shopping with a voice assistant, while 23.35% said they think it is not safe enough to disclose payment information over voice-activated assistants.
Quick Stats and Facts on Smart Speakers
24. 66.4 million US citizens own a smart speaker.
This means that around 26.2% of Americans have a smart speaker, an increase of 40% from last year. A 2017 research estimates that by 2020, 55% of US households will own a smart speaker in their homes.
25. Amazon leads the pack.
The share of Amazon Echo, the Alexa-powered smart speaker, grew to 61.1% of the market share (voice search statistics show it declining by 11% from the year before), while Google Home’s share increased from 5.5% to 23.9%. Others, like Apple HomePod and SonosOne, made up 15% of the market by the end of 2018.
26. Amazon Echo has the highest penetration rate of US homes.
In addition to being the best-selling product on Amazon in the 2018 holiday season, Amazon’s Echo has a 10% penetration of US homes, far exceeding Google Home at 4% and Microsoft’s Cortana at 2%, voice search 2019 statistics reveal.
27. The installed smart speaker base is expected to reach 500 million by 2023.
The installed base of smart speakers is expected to beat both wearables and tablets by 2021. The US is expected to make up the largest share of the global market, while China will witness the fastest growth rate — a whopping 166%.
28. 409.2 million smart speakers will be shipped worldwide by 2025.
With 98 million units shipped in 2019, the global smart speaker market was valued at $11.9 billion, voice search trends in 2019 show. According to some of the more optimistic projections, it will reach $35.5 billion by 2025.
29. 53% of smart speaker users are Millennials.
32% of smart speaker owners are Gen Xers and just 12% are seniors. But it’s not just age. Gender, salary, and even place of residence drive smart speaker ownership.
Men seem to prefer smart speakers to women as 60% of SS owners are men. In fact, the typical smart speaker owner is a young married couple (over 70% of voice search devices owners are married) with an annual salary of $75,000 that own a home, most likely in the city.
30. 52% of people keep their smart speakers in the living room.
It would appear that those who own voice-activated speakers keep their devices where everyone can access them. A quarter of owners keep their smart speakers in the bedroom, and 22% keep them in the kitchen.
Voice Assistant Statistics
31. The number of voice assistant users increased by 9.5% from last year.
(Search Engine Land; eMarketer)
How many people have a voice assistant? Around 112 million Americans use voice assistants every month. This means that 39.4% of all internet users and 33.8% of the total US population use a voice assistant. And the numbers keep going up. Increasing from 102 million last year, forecasts say that by 2021,123 million people will be using a voice assistant (or 36.6% of the US population).
32. Siri is the most popular voice assistant, even though…
What percentage of people use Siri? 44% of users of voice assistants on smartphones use Siri. 30% of users opted for Google Assistant, while Amazon Alexa comes in third with 17% of users, and Samsung’s Bixby is last with just 4%.
33. …The number of active users is declining.
Between May 2016 and May 2017, Siri lost around 7.3 million monthly users dropping the number of MAU from 48.7 million to 41.4 million. Nevertheless, Siri continues to be the most popular intelligent assistant, Siri statistics indicate, even though fewer people are using it.
34. Last year Apple shipped around 130 million devices with Siri preinstalled.
According to the company, there are around 500 million users, up from 375 million users in 2017. Siri is found on iPhones, iPads, Macs, as well as Apple Watch, Apple TV and the newly released Apple HomePod.
35. Apple does not provide a list of all commands Siri can do.
Siri facts show that this voice assistant has plenty of functions available, from checking emails to posting Tweets, as well as making appointments and setting alarms and reminders.
36. Google Assistant performed the best last year.
(Search Engine Land)
According to a Loop Ventures study, Google Assistant understood all 800 questions it was asked and correctly answered 93% of them. Siri came in second with 83% of correct answers and Alexa correctly answered 80% of questions. Siri misunderstood two of the questions and Alexa only misunderstood one.
37. Google Assistant gained four times more active users in 2018, Google assistant statistics reveal.
The popularity of Google Assistant is in part due to its availability in various languages and countries. As of 2018, Google Assistant is available in 80 countries and can speak 30 languages.
38. Google Assistant now supports 4,253 Google Actions in the US.
From the 18 app categories, 3 make a third of all Google actions. The “education and reference” category is the most popular, whereas “games and fun” and “kids and family” are ranked second and third, respectively. According to Google assistant stats, the least popular category on Google Assistant apps is “weather.”
39. Over 100 million devices with Alexa on board were sold last year.
(The Verge; Voicebot.ai)
Although this number is nothing compared to the 500+ million devices sold that have either the Google Assistant or Siri pre-installed, Alexa consumers seem to be making a conscious decision to purchase particularly this voice assistant instead of buying one that comes preinstalled with the device.
40. Amazon Alexa now has 100,000 skills, Alexa stats show.
When it was first released in 2016, Alexa only had 130 skills. Out of all the categories of skills, music and audio had the highest reviews with this category getting an average of 4.19 stars out of 5.
41. Smart speaker ownership increases the use of voice assistants on smartphones.
24% of Americans who own smart speakers reported increased use of voice assistants on smartphones after the purchase. What’s more, 39.8% of people who search by voice through virtual assistants every day also have a smart speaker as opposed to 19.1% of Americans who only use digital voice assistants.
42. 89% of consumers said they chose a smart home device that is compatible with their voice assistant.
Additionally, 44% of consumers say that they use their voice assistant to control another smart device or product in their home. The majority of them (58%) use their voice assistant to control their TV. The smallest percent (16%), voice technology trends inform, use a voice assistant to control the doorbell.
Wrapping It Up
Given the fast pace that tech is developing in today’s digital world, it was only a matter of time before searching by voice, with the hands-free convenience it provides, took off among consumers. The technology is not perfect, and there are many who still distrust it and find it unnatural to speak to a computer — or think that it is the start of AI and robots taking over the world — but voice search statistics clearly show that voice technology is here to stay. So, we may as well use it.
- Search Engine Watch
- DBS Interactive
- Search Engine Land
- Adobe Blog
- Adobe Blog
- Google Blog
- PR Newswire
- Social Media Explorer
- Search Engine Journal
- CapTech Consulting
- Search Engine Land
- Business Insider
- Digital Trends
- Digital Trends
- The Verge