Voice search has quickly become an important part of SEO, and it definitely won’t be going away. A vast number of consumers now use voice search to look for products and services online, as it’s much more convenient than typing.
If you optimize your content for voice search, you’ll drive more traffic to your website and get your SEO ranking to a whole new level. Not everyone is embracing it yet, so you will also gain a competitive edge. Check out our top voice search stats to help you understand the scope and importance of voice search.
- 30% of web browsing will be screenless by 2020
- Google’s voice search supports more than 100 languages
- Google’s speech recognition has a 95% accuracy rate when search queries are in English
- 32% of people use voice search daily instead of typing
- 72% of smart speaker owners use their devices as part of a daily routine
- About 43% of people shop online via voice-enabled devices
- There are more than 200 million smart speakers across the globe
- Smart speaker sales will surpass tablet sales by 2021
- Over 58% of consumers have found local businesses using voice search
Many emerging trends are fueling voice search and completely transforming SEO and the way we use the internet. Each of them stems from a simple fact that we speak much faster than we type. So, it’s only natural that we turn to voice for efficiency.
1. The majority of smartphone users worldwide now use voice search
In 2020, more than half of smartphone users all over the globe are using voice search technology.
2. Voice search will be used for nearly a third of all web browsing sessions in 2020
Gartner estimates that 30% of web browsing across all search engines will be completely screenless by 2020, performed only by voice.
3. Almost half of the consumers are using voice technology for general search queries
According to an Adobe study, 48% of users utilize voice search technology to find answers to general questions online quickly.
4. Close to a third of people using the internet globally are using mobile voice search
According to Google, 27% of the global internet community is using voice search on their mobile devices.
5. Voice search accounts for only a small percentage of all Google searches
Approximately 13% of all searches on Google are performed using voice search technology.
6. Google keeps bringing native voice input to mobile users around the world
Speech recognition on Google now supports more than 100 languages, enabling a great number of mobile users worldwide to use voice search in their native language.
7. Voice search users on Google get the most accurate results when they search in English
Although Google’s speech recognition technology supports multiple languages, it doesn’t always provide very accurate results. The English language has the highest accuracy rate in Google’s voice search – 95%.
8. Voice search result pages load much faster
It takes only about 4.6 seconds to load a voice search result page, as opposed to the average page that takes about 8.8 seconds to load. That means that voice search result pages load 52% faster.
9. The Voice recognition market is growing at a lightning-fast pace
In 2015, Technavio estimated that the voice recognition market would reach $601 million by 2019. However, the latest reports from 2018 show the market hitting a whopping $6.9 billion.
10. Local searches became greater at a historic point of internet search
When mobile use surpassed desktop use for the first time ever in 2015, more people started using local search.
11. Almost a third of consumers prefer voice over typing a search query
32% of consumers use voice technology every day to conduct search queries that they used to type.
12. A lot of consumers leverage voice assistants to ask quick questions
Voice search is the preferred choice of 29% of consumers who use it daily to seek answers to quick questions.
13. A third of consumers ask their voice assistant to play music every day
33% of users leverage voice assistants on their devices to play music every day. 49% of consumers do it every month, while 18% never do.
14. People daily use voice assistants to check the weather and news
35% of users keep up with the news and check the weather with the help of their voice assistants. 15% prefer to do it the old-fashioned way.
15. About a third of consumers use voice instead of typing emails and texts
Voice assistants type emails and texts every day for 31% of consumers looking to send their messages faster. 26% of users still prefer typing.
16. Many people use voice to control their other smart devices
16% of consumers remotely control their other smart devices daily by using a voice assistant. 28% do it every month, while 56% never do.
17. Using voice for navigation and traffic is also very popular
Voice assistants help 19% of consumers (daily), and 54% of consumers (monthly) navigate or check traffic
18. Voice assistants help people make a purchase
40% of consumers use voice to order or buy something every month, while only 10% do it daily. 50% of consumers never do it using a voice assistant.
19. Conversational searches account for the majority of voice searches in English
People usually use voice search like they are talking to another person. Nearly 70% of voice searches are conversational, written in natural language.
20. Search engines better understand simpler natural language voice searches
Voice search results on Google that are written in natural language have a 9th-grade readability level usually.
21. Most people using smart speakers talk to them as if they were human
41% of smart speaker users say that talking to their voice assistants feels like talking to a friend. They often say “thank you”, “please”, and “sorry” to their virtual assistants.
22. A fifth of mobile searches in 2016 included voice search
Voice search accounted for 20% of all searches on Android devices and various Google apps back in 2016.
23. Voice speaker buyers keep growing in number
It is estimated that the number of buyers of voice-activated speakers will surpass 25.6 million in 2020.
24. People are increasingly interested in utilizing voice assistants
Of all the people who still don’t have a virtual assistant, 34% would like to buy one.
25. Voice assistants can come in pretty handy during the holiday season
In 2017, 1 in 4 people purchased holiday gifts with the help of their voice assistants.
26. The number of smart speaker users in the US is rapidly increasing
In 2018, 1 in 6 US citizens (16%) owned a voice-enabled speaker, which is 128% more users than there were in 2017.
27. Household ownership of smart speakers in the US is rising
In 2018, 1 in 4 households in the US (24%) had a smart speaker. At the time, 4 out of 10 of those households owned more than one smart speaker.
28. More than half of online adults have used voice search by now
In 2018, 25% of adults used voice search on a monthly basis. By 2019, voice search reached 58% of users, with 33% using the technology monthly.
29. Almost every shopper conducts online research before making a purchase
A whopping 82% of shoppers research products or services online before buying anything.
30. Shopping via smart speakers is not taking off yet
Only 11.5% of people who own smart speakers use their built-in voice assistants to shop online every month.
31. Smart speakers have become part of people’s daily routine
Most smart speaker owners (72%) are using their voice-enabled speakers to get more things done during their daily routine.
32. Smart speakers have become an essential part of people’s lives
Nearly two-thirds (65%) of Google Home or Amazon Echo owners can’t imagine giving up their voice-activated speakers. 42% of them say the devices are essential to their lives.
33. People speak to their voice-enabled devices every day
65% of people aged 25-49 perform voice searches daily, followed by 59% of people aged 18-24 and 57% of people aged 50 or older.
34. Millennials account for the majority of users of voice-activated virtual assistants
In 2019, 39.3% of millennials were using voice-enabled virtual assistants, followed by 17.2% of Gen Xers and 10.1% of baby boomers.
35. Nearly half of voice-enabled device owners use their devices for online shopping
Roughly 43% of people who own a voice-enabled device use that device to make online purchases.
36. Shopping via voice-enabled devices varies across age groups
Consumers aged 45-60 shop via voice-enabled devices the most (43%), followed by consumers aged 30-44 (38%), consumers under 30 (15%), and those over 60 (4%).
37. A lot of people use voice search only once a day
According to Edit, 2 in 5 adults perform a voice search once every day.
38. Some people use mobile voice search at least once per month
Roughly 1 in 5 adults rely on mobile voice search for assistance at least once a month.
39. Younger adults are more likely to use mobile voice search
Younger adults aged 16-24 (25%) use voice search on mobile monthly more than consumers aged 55-64 (9%).
40. Smart home device ownership by age
Most owners of smart home devices are aged 36-35 (46%), followed by individuals aged 16-25 (33%), consumers aged 36-45 (29%), consumers aged 61+ (15%), and those aged 46-60 (14%).
41. Men account for more monthly voice search users than women
In 2018, men vs women monthly voice search looked like this, respectively: 66% vs 55% (smartphone), 53% vs 30% (desktop/laptop), 49% vs 31% (tablet), and 46% vs 26% (smart speaker).
There’s a huge buzz around voice search all over the planet, and the global voice search market is only going to continue to grow. There is no slowing it down, especially now when smart speakers are taking over the world.
Let’s see what the future holds for voice search.
42. The smart speaker market is expected to reach exponential growth
The market is expected to exceed a staggering $30 billion by 2024, surpassing sales that few other electronic products have managed to reach.
43. More than half of daily smart speaker users leverage voice for monthly purchases
62% of smart speaker owners who frequently use the devices rely on voice search to make monthly purchases online.
44. Some smart speaker owners are yet to use their virtual assistants for online shopping
19% of consumers have already used their smart home assistants like Amazon Echo for online shopping, while 33% of them plan on following the suit.
45. The smart speaker installed base in China keeps growing
According to a 2019 Canalys forecast, smart speakers were expected to surge in the Chinese mainland, with the installed base growing by 166%.
46. Smart speakers are surging in Japan as well
The Canalys forecast also predicted the Japanese smart speaker installed base growing by 131% in 2019.
47. The US remains a global leader in the adoption of smart speakers
Of more than 200 million units installed in 2019 worldwide, the US accounts for 42.2% of units, which is the largest smart speaker installed base in the world.
48. Smart speakers are on their way to outnumbering tablets
Tablet sales are slightly declining, making it easier for smart speakers to surpass them. It is expected that smart speakers will overtake tablets by 2021.
49. Voice shopping will become a force to be reckoned with in retail
The voice shopping market was worth $2 billion in 2018. According to the latest forecasts, it is expected to hit $40 billion by 2022.
50. The growing use of smart speakers is driving the voice shopping market growth
Only 13% of households had smart speakers in 2018. By 2022, that number is estimated to reach 55%.
51. Consumer spending via voice shopping is also expected to grow
With the rise of voice shopping, consumers will probably spend more on voice-based purchases. Their spending via voice search is estimated to reach 18% by 2022.
52. Users of voice-enabled devices plan to increase their use of voice technology
61% of consumers aged 25-64 plan on using voice technology more in the coming years, while 57% of those aged 18-24 plan to follow the trend.
Smart speakers are all the rage now, but other voice-enabled devices aren’t lagging too far behind. People use them daily or rather frequently to search for brands online.
They especially use voice search to discover local businesses. Dive into the specifics to get a clear insight into the trend.
53. Google Assistant has greatly extended its global reach
More than 400 million devices now support Google Assistant, making its voice assistant installed base the largest on the planet.
54. Google and Amazon provide almost all smart speakers currently available
According to Strategy Analytics, 94% of all smart speakers available in the world come from Google and Amazon.
55. Google Home is the winner in answering voice search queries accurately
Google Home has 81% accuracy when providing voice search answers, followed by Amazon Echo (64%), Harman Kardon Invoke (57%), and Apple HomePod (52.3%).
56. Amazon Echo had almost three times more users than Google Home in 2017
Of US consumers who used voice search monthly in 2017, 70.6% used Amazon Echo, while only 23.8% used Google Home.
57. A fourth of all Windows 10 taskbar searches are voice-based
According to Purna Virji, the Senior Manager of Global Engagement at Microsoft, 25% of searches on Windows 10 taskbar are voice-based.
58. People are generally pleased with their voice-enabled digital assistants
93% and 50% of users report being satisfied and very satisfied with their voice assistants, respectively. Their minimum criteria include accuracy (73%), saving time (59%), and making their lives easier (55%).
59. Voice search results on Google are typically short and concise
After analyzing 10,000 Google Home search results, Backlinko found that the average Google voice search result contains only 29 words.
60. More than a fifth of voice searches include only 25 common keywords
Of all voice searches, more than 20% contain a combination of 25 keywords, the most common being “how,” “what,” “best,” and “easy.”
61. More than half of smart speaker owners want to hear from their favorite brands
52% of users of voice-activated speakers want brands to send them updates about the latest promotions, deals, and sales.
62. More than half of US consumers have performed a local business voice search
More than 58% of consumers in the US have searched for local businesses using voice technology.
63. The majority of smart speaker owners use local voice search at least once a week
While 76% of smart speaker users search for local businesses by voice on a weekly basis, 46% of users do the same daily.
64. Restaurants and cafés are top businesses in local voice searches
51% of consumers use local voice search to find restaurants and cafés, followed by grocery stores (41%), food delivery (35%), clothing stores (32%), and hotels or B&B (30%).
65. There are more voice-based than text-based local searches on mobile
When performing local searches, mobile users are three times more likely to use voice search than to type their search queries.
66. Most consumers immediately call the business they found using local voice search
While 28% of local voice search users call the business they found, others first visit their website (27%), visit the location (19%), continue the research to find out more about it (14%), or research other businesses (12%).
67. Digital audio advertising may be the next big thing for businesses
Since voice technology is driving consumers to reduce screen time, it creates plenty of opportunities for digital audio advertising to rise.
68. Call commerce in the US is about to explode
Click-to-call is driving consumers to spend more on their purchases. In 2020, phone calls are expected to stimulate more than $1 trillion in total consumer spending in the US.
69. Phone calls can generate more revenue than online leads
Although leads generated online are undeniably valuable, they don’t have the same power as phone calls when it comes to converting to revenue. Calls can generate 10-15 times more revenue than online leads, which is one of the most important reasons for optimizing for voice search.
70. Callers can generate an ROI much faster than online leads
According to a Forrester study, 60% of marketers agree that inbound phone calls can convert a lead at a 30% faster rate than it takes an online lead to convert. Phone calls are then better than web leads when it comes to generating an immediate ROI.
71. Callers have a higher retention rate than online leads
Forrester shows that, according to over 54% of marketers, leads who place a phone call after finding a local business using voice search have a 28% higher retention rate than online leads. They are also more loyal, which means greater profitability in the long run.
All of these stats clearly show that voice search isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, if ever. More and smarter devices will keep hitting the market, making voice search an absolute breeze. This means that more people are going to leverage this useful feature and further influence the global market growth.
Have you started optimizing your content for voice search? The time to do it is now! The sooner you begin optimizing, the sooner you can reap the fantastic benefits. Start with these crucial stats in mind and harness the full power of voice search!