Feature Deep Dive: Shopping List Integration
Updated: Mar 3
One of the most popular features on voice devices has been the ability to create lists. Shopping lists, in particular, are very popular. While there are many commerce experiences where users can complete entire transactions using voice devices, the simple act of adding items to a shopping list to later use in retail stores is a highly used experience in voice. In fact, over 45 percent of Alexa users have repeatedly used their voice device to add an item to a shopping list.
With shopping as an ongoing task in people’s lives, data reveals that people often spend 5 to 7 days building a shopping list. Grocery stores are noticing how technology is changing consumer behavior and the industry is adapting to meet these rapid changes. As a result, over 56 percent of grocers are making or running a strategy which includes digital, online or in-store experiences to keep up with their tech-savvy shoppers.
Grocery shopping lists are at the core of customer needs and the percentage of grocery shopping apps rose to over 54 percent to meet the demand. Voice device skills, like shopping list apps, are also on the rise and quickly offering ways to minimize consumer stress while helping brands get in front of the right people.
Shopping list skills, at their core, allow users to create a smart, categorized shopping list that users can email or text to themselves or whoever they wish to share the list with. Skills even have the capability to categorize items so they’re easy to find when users are in the store.
The beauty behind this feature is that users don’t need to always be near their voice device to continue adding things. For example, when using Alexa, almost everything is stored in Amazon’s network so Alexa can sync with other devices and services to share the shopping list across user phones, etc. Apart from using their voice, users can also add things to their shopping list through the Alexa app or Amazon website.
Far from being an ordinary or dormant shopping list, Amazon’s Echo and the Google Home also allow users to shop directly from the devices. Users can even ask about exclusive deals and apply those to their orders.
VALUE FOR BRANDS
While voice shopping lists are fantastic for consumers, this feature is an excellent tool for brands as well. With “list permission”, skills can look into users’ shopping lists. The feature allows brands to then use that information to personalize or adjust voice offerings and tailor each experience for different user needs. This is hugely beneficial for brands because they can gain useful insight into consumer’s shopping habits.
Brands can also use this feature to write to users shopping lists. Skills can actively do this by walking users through items they may need and add the selected ones to the users shopping lists once the user selects those things. For brands, this creates a tremendous potential for engaging with a customer and understanding what they’re really looking for.
Finally, brands can also take advantage of list events. If a brand has produced a custom Alexa skill that is built around list creation, it has the ability to activate list events. The brand can then be notified every time a user updates their list, which allows them to react to user behaviors.
For example, if a grocery store allows users to make a shopping list and a user adds bananas to his or her list, that action notifies the skill owner and they can respond with a coupon for bananas. This is an ideal tool for brands because they can better understand customer needs while offering special value to their users.
Shopping list integration through voice technologies is a powerful tool for brands looking to add deeper value and connect with customers in a different way. While everyone is trying to figure out how to directly monetize voice experiences, simply helping customers build shopping lists could be a half step that allows brands to engage with customers in behaviors that we know they are frequenting. Adding value in places where habits are already forming will align brands with that habit and create strong bonds between themselves and their customers.