Did you know that voice search accounts for 50% of all online searches, and 30% of searches without a screen? The use of voice search is so common that it’s becoming second nature to many, especially since it has been integrated into devices they use every day. Now, the ability to search the internet has been streamlined and modernized. As more businesses add voice search, results have become direct, simple, and most importantly, exactly what users want.
Voice search may still be in its earliest days, but the technology is improving at an incredible pace. As a result, it won’t be long before voice search technology revolutionizes not only the way we search the internet, but how we interact with our devices. You can stay ahead of the curve by integrating voice search technology now.
Here’s why it’s a good idea.
A search function is a valuable part of applications across industries. As such, developers spend a lot of time and effort making them work properly. The goal, of course, is to not only get users to search, but more importantly, find what they are looking for. Even if you have something unique to offer, it won’t do your business any good if users can’t find it.
Search bars are so easy to recognize you no longer need to label them. Simply add a small magnifying glass icon and your users will understand. With that in mind, it’s important to remember that voice search is not just a search bar paired with a speech-to-text system. Using an approach like that will only lead to a poor user experience.
In fact, users use voice search differently from traditional search; in general, voice searches are usually expressed in natural language, and are often longer than their typed counterparts. For example, imagine a user is looking to purchase a stereo system for their car through your app. Typing “Sony DXS-M5511BT Stereo” into a search bar is natural – but saying it out loud is far less natural. Instead, this user might simply say “Sony car stereos.”
This difference has clear implications for voice search and how it pertains to user experience.
When compared to traditional search and search filters, voice search has a few benefits.
One of the challenges of graphical user interfaces is that there needs to be some sort of button for every function. For example, if you want your users to be able to search by category, users must be able to see each category. Due to this, you’ll need to decide which categories are most important, and decide on specific names for each of them.
Consider this scenario: you sell licensed clothing. You’ll need to decide if your users will find band tee shirts under the category “shirts,” “tee shirts,” “graphic tees,” or “band tees.” Subcategories are always an option, but creating a category hierarchy only leads to clicking and searching – not the best user experience.
Voice search doesn’t suffer from this limitation. Instead, you can define an unlimited number of synonyms for your categories and products. By simply saying what it is they’re looking for, users can be immediately directed to the proper product.
Creating an app is one thing, but making it popular with your users is something completely different. In order to ensure the popularity of your application, and add necessary value, you must offer something unique. One way to do this is through the implementation of voice search. The technology is still relatively simple, yet it has already been embraced by the public. This is thanks to many factors, including the technology’s flexibility, as well as its speed. Indeed, according to a study done by Stanford researchers, users can speak up to three times faster than they can type on a mobile device. That means voice search can provide results faster than most people can even type their inquiry into the search bar.
Consequently, with such technologies in place, users get better, faster services and a unified response to user queries.
One of the biggest advantages of adding voice search to your mobile app is enhanced personalization and a direct line of communication with users. Voice search provides an easy-to-use channel that represents the fastest and safest way to communicate. Perhaps more surprisingly, not only do users find voice search helpful, they enjoy using it!
Another advantage to adding voice search to your mobile app is how it supports compatibility with artificial intelligence (AI). This in turn, creates a variety of possible advanced options. Indeed, choosing to add voice search strategies offers users seamless – and highly advanced – interactivity. Consider devices and applications such as Alexa, Siri, and Cortana.
Even beyond these benefits, there are more practical reasons you should add voice search to your mobile app development process, now.
Many so-called “smart” technologies advance slowly; thanks to the sophistication of these technologies, it takes time to make updates. However, this is not true for voice search. In fact, voice search technology advances every day. This is especially true when you pair voice search with AI, which gives it the power to learn and improve all on its own.
Voice search is now everywhere. In fact, according to recent reporting from Siteefy:
These numbers will only increase as the technology improves and users become more familiar with it.
Finally, voice search offers a way for users to interact with your app apart from their hands. This creates opportunities for disabled people, or others – like older adults – who may have difficulty with “traditional” app interfaces.
Additionally, if you add voice search, you have an opportunity to connect with users who may not be native speakers of your primary language. In fact, you can apply as many languages as you see fit to your voice search. Many bilingual people find information easier to understand when it is presented in their native language.
Most businesses want to grow strategically through the implementation of technology. This urge has driven countless companies to migrate to the digital world so they can reach out to their consumers in new and exciting ways. Choosing to add voice search is one such way, and trends suggest it will be a significant factor in how people find content online. Chances are it will never replace traditional search in the near future, but it does already offer many advantages today.
As the world becomes more and more digital, it’s critical for businesses to understand how to adapt to how their users are searching, in addition to what they are searching for. Voice search is one way to do that, and an experienced mobile app development team can help you implement it.