How consumers are using voice search in the UK
23 July 2019
Voice search is far from a fad or a gimmick, according to the UK public who believe the technology is very much here to stay. Earlier in the year, Microsoft Advertising examined how pervasive voice search actually is and found that smart home devices and digital voice assistants like Cortana have indeed become integrated into the everyday lives of British consumers. A survey of 1000 people and 150 marketers revealed that consumers use voice search 2.4 times a day, with a further rise to 3.8 times a day among the 18-24 year-old demographic. A preference for voice search was also expressed at those times when people are away from their computers, with just some of the benefits including speed (44%), its modern feel (34%) and feeling like less effort than text search (31%). Among the top things Brits said they use voice search for were checking the weather (44%), catching up on the news (37%), playing music (35%), finding directions (31%) and shopping (21%).
There is no doubt that voice search is increasingly becoming popular among consumers, with a quarter of those surveyed claiming they would like to be able to use voice search more often. The Microsoft Advertising research revealed that a quarter of consumers think existing voice search technology does not go far enough, while a further 25% were actually seeking to use voice for even more types of searches. The survey serves as confirmation that this is the moment for marketers to make their impact by harnessing the opportunities presented by this technology. However, a study of a 150 marketers showed that voice search is not really a current priority for the industry, with the technology ranked seventh our of eight in terms of its importance as a marketing channel.