Amazon’s Alexa has sold more than 25 million devices worldwide. If you include those using alternatives from Google, Apple and others the total worldwide users tops 100m people. To put that in perspective, if each device is used once per day that accounts for up to 7% of Google’s daily searches after only a year or so of being on the market. It’s an ever growing band of users looking for a quick and voice activated solution to their day to day problems.
At the moment the majority of those searches are for household issues, recipes, DIY tips and questions to the answers of the latest family quiz. But this will change. Voice activated devices will soon come down in price and up in usability and accuracy, a sure-fire sign that more people will adopt and use them actively. As this happens the percentage of daily searches carried out on these devices will increase dramatically, it’s anticipated that this may rival the more than 3 billion searches done each day on Google.
This will lead to a rise in people looking to take advantage and tap in to this huge market. But how? How is it possible to ‘rank’ better and be the place to go for the devices supplying the answers. Though we can only speculate, this will probably start with whoever has the bigger budget. It’s only a matter of time until one of the platforms starts having advertising slots during your favourite songs, but long term this will swing to helping users.
Long term, the answer will be the same as is served by the top search engines now, the best one. Voice activated devices will and do already use word recognition to determine how to answer your question, it’s feasible to say that you and me will be able to manipulate this to our advantage, just like traditional SEO.
I’d guess that Google will be the first place to see this happening, they will be the early adopters as always, testing ways to make even more money. I anticipate websites using regional dialect and slang being the first to see these sort of benefits, as those websites will be hugely relevant to people utilising those words during the questions.
I’m sure that voice activated search has a big future, but this will be intertwined with traditional search engine dynamics, meaning Google will, as always dominate anything to do with these arenas.