Voice technologies are all set to reach billions of people in the decades ahead. But how are they going to influence our lives?
It is time you got started if you have not yet started considering voice as part of your company, user experience or marketing strategies!
Where to start?
Building a smart skill is a valuable experience, but it does require some planning, preparation, and work before it can be successfully added to Amazon or Google libraries. Thinking of customers is an important aspect of developing smart skills. What do they need? How are you making their lives easier with your skill? The best skills are user-oriented, receptive to their needs and helps in delivering useful information.
A futuristic market – time to create an Alexa skill or Google Assistant action
To gain a foothold into the sphere of voice assistive technology is surely advantageous as the gravity of competition is relatively small. Deciding whether your brand needs to develop a skill completely depends on your company’s mission, principles, values, and goals. For those who are looking ahead, developing a skill or an action that meets customer’s requirements can be an effective way to support your business mission. If your business is considering to enter the voice market, an Alexa skill or a Google action could be a great starting point.
Questions to ask before your voice app is designed:
- Is your voice app designed for Alexa or google assistant?
- See what voice technology is available today & what’s in the pipeline for tomorrow?
- Understanding the importance of voice apps
- Determine the best place to begin and how to take your first move into voice technology
Why build a skill or an action for your business?
Here are some reasons why you should develop a skill for your business:
Voice is not only the future; it’s now. According to Google, around 20% of mobile searches in the Google App are conducted through voice commands. People are more likely to ask their smart speakers before they pull out their phone and start typing. Businesses can use voice apps for many reasons. A voice interface promotes branding, can offer engaging content that will increase sales and connect with customers.
- Getting ahead of the competition
A very small percentage of businesses use voice-enabled apps. Based on the uncertainty of expenditures and resources in something that will not work, businesses often refrain from pursuing new technology as they are wary of investing their effort and money into something that is not expected to function. Nevertheless, Alexa already has over 100,000 voice capabilities, and it is still increasing. This is a great opportunity to put your app ahead of your competitors and make your company stand out.
Getting your name out there is one of the toughest but most beneficial things you can do for your business. Having a skill in smart speaker is just another way people can hear about and a medium to interact with your brand.
- First mover advantage
Having a smart skill can make your business seem more genuine. It can give your business the credibility of being a brand that customers can trust. The voice-apps enables users the ability to interact with them, without using their hands. That means, they can even order the latest products even while driving. A voice-enabled app can take commands and requests almost anytime, allowing users to interact with the app more frequently and more efficiently. This offers customers an opportunity to enhance their voice search use.
How to build a skill?
Depending on the size of your organization, your IT team may be able to build your voice app, or you can hire an external agency to do so.
Building an app takes time and investment. The customer and his requirements are the beginning of app development. Originally voice was a novelty feature that then began to develop as users started to use it for smartphone searches. Voice has continued to evolve since then with the growing momentum of smart speakers and digital assistants.
Because of the rapid adoption of smart assistants, there are few interesting predictions around voice and its usage. Gartner has stated that by 2021, early adopter brands that redesign their websites to support visual and voice search will increase their digital presence by 30-40%. A report by Voicebot predicts that smart speakers will reach a global installed base of 100 million in 2018 with continued growth to 300 million by 2022.
Does Voice need its own strategy?
Voice calls for a new strategy; it has its own set of criteria, considerations, and requirements to guarantee a successful experience. More than ever, we are dependent on technology in almost every aspect of our lives.
Today, there are a multitude of options while selecting voice apps.
There are two ways to build a voice app- The Do-it-Yourself (DIY) approach and the Outsourcing (Do it For Me) option.
DIY or Outsourcing
There is a wide range of DIY voice app tools available on the web. There are numerous free websites that allow businesses to build their own voice-app at low costs and none of them require knowledge of programming. Such tools let non-developers to effectively develop their own voice applications.
But, the question in everybody’s mind is- Should you outsource voice application development to an external company or try DIY? The decision is entirely yours and failing to consider it carefully can cost the business dearly in terms of time and money.
Some of the available DIY tools are general app builders while others target specific needs, like customized apps for specific business users. However, there are some DIY voice app tool builders who let developers, who know programming, design apps using the code they know and then these tools will transform the code into a voice application. After that, you can submit the voice apps to Amazon or Google stores.
However, there are many downsides in businesses that decide to produce their own app using generic DIY apps building tools and websites.
Some of the reasons why using DIY tools or websites is not a good idea for building a voice app for your business:
- Less chance of approval by Voice-Apps store
Voice-Apps stores are very strict about what they allow to publish on their stores and approval guidelines are stringent.
- Lesser downloads
Even if these apps get published, the chances of users downloading these apps is remote as their quality is suspected.
- Less scope of customization
All voice apps created by the DIY tool will look and feel the same, thereby, not distinguishing your business from that of the competitors. The decision regarding what features to be included is not possible in DIY voice-apps.
- No post-sales support
If you develop a voice-app by outsourcing you are assured of post-sales support which is not available in the case of DIY apps.
In businesses, some mistakes or errors can cost the business a lot. Therefore, voice builders and an agency like us who are specialized should be entrusted for voice-app building.
Benefits of Outsourcing
- Reduced investment for infrastructure
- No need to worry about meeting deadlines
- Improved voice app quality
Companies can choose to outsource. Some organizations choose to outsource an entire process right from app planning to closure. Outsourcing definitely has its pros and cons. Organizations have to carefully evaluate how useful outsourcing can be for the business after taking into consideration the size, budget and the process involved in it. If you outsource, choose a knowledgeable partner making sure it is a win-win situation for both the companies.
Choosing the Right Option for you
TechCrunch notes that Do It for Me (DIFM) options are in demand. Do it For Me are the solutions which handle the entire process of prototyping a voice capability, from idea generation to voice deployment. This option is also a great choice for businesses that may not be familiar with the world of voice apps.
- A knowledgeable partner
A strong voice solution provider will offer you access to an experienced team who has managed countless voice experience journeys across many industries and ranging in complexity.
- Best practices are instilled according to your business requirements.
Every company has different objectives that change over time. That’s why it is important to have professional help to craft your voice app using the industry’s best practices to your unique situation.
- No need for extensive internal or IT resources
With a managed smart speaker solution, you can leverage the solution provider’s resources and their expertise to monitor and drive the program forward and avoid costly delays.
- Quality assurance
With a managed solution, a full-service Voice solution provider, one who is familiar with all aspects of your voice technology, will regularly check for quality.
- Voice skill builder type and location
- Complexity and the number of features
- Back-end infrastructure and connected APIs
- The complexity of conversational design
- Inclusion of additional branded visual elements
- App maintenance includes:
- Upgrading to the latest versions
- Fixing bugs
- Code improvement and optimization
- Adding new features
- Controlling app stability
- Return on investment
- Pioneers in voice technology
- Strong technical expertise
- Voice app quality assurance
- Customization according to business requirements
- Maintenance and impeccable support throughout the process