Six out of ten smart speaker owners have used them to make a purchase in the past year

According to a survey by AI and data agency, Artefact UK, six out of ten smart speaker owners have used them to make a purchase in the past year. Moreover, nearly a quarter (22%) said they have done so within the past week.

Brand conversation?
  • Nearly a third (31%) of smart speaker owners have already interacted with brands via their device.
  • When respondents were asked to identify what they think smart speakers can do, 47% said shopping or buying takeaways, 39% said they were ideal for playing games or quizzes and 28% said for booking travel.
  • The companies that people have interacted with are dominated by technology brands (especially Amazon), supermarkets, such as Sainsbury’s and takeaway delivery services including Domino’s.
Talking loud, saying nothing?
  • 45% say they aren’t getting the most out of their device.
  • The most common use scenarios are to listen to music, books or podcasts 57%, while  47% use voice to for basic search, such as weather forecasts or recipes.
  • 38% say they use their smart speaker as an alarm clock.

There seems to be a significant disconnect in how people are using their smart speakers, as compared to what they ‘think’ they should be able to do with them. As the number of households owning smart speakers grows there is a significant opportunity for brands that can rectify this. This lies in both optimising search for voice and through branded skills that play to what people actually want from their devices.


The NHS made headlines recently when it announced its Alexa skill, which illustrates this point. It also shows that it’s not just the likes of Apple, Amazon and Google that can reach a mass audience through voice. The race is on for a brand to redefine what voice technology can and should be. The age of voice has arrived, so don’t get caught with nothing to say.

Sarah De Martin, managing director at Artefact UK