The voice search revolution is dramatically altering how consumers engage with businesses and is going to transform the work of property professionals, as profoundly as email, online advertising and digital document management has already done.
People constantly use their phones to look for locations around them at any given time and voice search is becoming increasingly popular in local searches, such as ’restaurants near me’, ‘one bed flat near me’ or ‘estate agents near me’. In fact ‘near me’ Google searches have doubled in the past year, with half of the searches leading to a store visit within one day’s time.
Recent Google stats also show that currently, 65% of 25-49 year olds speak to their voice-enabled devices at least once a day, while 78% of smart speaker owners search for local business on a weekly basis, with 46% saying they perform these searches daily.
The most common action following a voice search is a call to the business they searched for. Other common follow-up actions are visiting the business’s website (27%), visiting its location (19%), conducting research on the business (14%) and conducting more research into other businesses (12%).
The key drivers for the success of voice search is speed – it is 3.7 times faster than typing; it is perfect for mobiles, with 60% of mobile searches using voice search at least some of the time; and it is more convenient and easier to use. For example, typing ‘three-bedroom house in Leatherhead with a garden shed and garage’ is a pain typing on a mobile. Saying the same phrase out loud is quick and easy.
Richard Murray, CEO of Veco™ comments: “Voice search presents new opportunities for the property industry – from streamlining work processes and creating new channels of communication, to marketing properties and engaging clients in a more natural way.
“Voice search is growing exponentially and artificial intelligence is playing an increasingly important role in our lives – it is estimated that by the end of this year, half of all searches will be voice-based.
“Always striving for innovation, Veco™ has designed a property API feed that allows prospective tenants and buyers to use Amazon Alexa enabled devices to search for property listings and find their next home by specifying their budget and the number of bedrooms they need, using voice commands on any Alexa enabled device.” Veco™ Property Search will work on any Alexa enabled device including Amazon Echo; Ehco Plus; Echo Dot; Amazon Tap; Amazon Fire TV; Fire TV Cube; Fire TV Stick; and Fire Tablets (varying models). Alexa devices that have a screen will show records with text and the main photo of the property.