Apple HomePod is not a failure

It’s time to admit that Apple HomePod is not a failure!

I got an email this morning showing some recent articles from around the web and something struck me as hilarious. There’s a lot of talk about how Apple HomePod is a failure because it has “only” about a 6% market share in the US. But take a look at what that means for Apple.

Take a look at the two below headlines:

  1. CIRP says Apple Has Sold 3 Million HomePods in U.S., suggesting $1B in Sales
  2. Sonos IPO Values Company at $1.5 Billion, Offers Smart Speaker Pure Play for Investors

The takeaway from this? The value of Apple’s HomePod business is “only” 2/3rds that of Sonos’ whole business! That’s pretty remarkable. Based on this, I would suggest that Apple HomePod is not a failure.

While I wish that Apple made Siri more open so ShopClerk could help Siri uses as well, they’ve shown that they can build a pretty darn great smart speaker. I’ve got two of them.

 

Apple HomePod business impact vs Sonos business value

The smart speaker wave is continuing

The research group CIRP released their latest study on US smart speaker adoption. Over 50 million homes now have a smart speaker!

Amazon still has the largest marketshare, at 70%, but Google’s catching up, with 24%, and their speakers are now outselling Amazon’s. Some of Google’s growth isn’t due to paying customers; I scored a free Google Home Mini the other day by signing up for a clean energy alternative for my home. Best Buy was giving out free Minis over the holiday season with large purchases.

It’s becoming increasingly likely that your customers will have a smart speaker. Let ShopClerk help you use that to your advantage.

Check out the ShopClerk app in the Shopify App Store.

 

US Smart Speaker Installed Base

Smart speaker market share in the US
Amazon has 70% smart speaker market share in the US. Google is gaining and currently has 24%.

 

Global Smart Speaker Market

What’s Conversational Commerce?

What’s Conversational Commerce?

You may have heard the phrase “conversational commerce” before which had been used a lot in the past and is now regaining popularity. In fact, you use “conversational commerce” every day! It’s just “tech talk” for communicating with your customers in a natural way.

In the past, you’ve done this on the phone, in your store (if you have one), and over email. Chatbots were super hyped a few years ago, but the technology wasn’t good enough to make them really useful.

Recent advances in natural language processing (understanding what someone means when they say someone) are giving us the tools to make chatbots and voice assistants much more capable. It still takes work to do, but you can get much better results than in the past.

Shopify wrote this blog post in 2016 which discussed that customers are using messaging apps to interact with brands more often than they were social networks. They could be messaging with chatbots or humans. At the time, live chat had a 73% customer satisfaction rate, which is pretty good! And you can see that Shopify is putting their money where their mouth is, with the release of both the Kit assistant and the Ping messaging app in 2018.

What else is happening in 2018?

If you take those improvements to natural language processing and combine them with similar gains in the accuracy of speech recognition, you get the rise in popularity of voice assistants, like Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, etc. These assistants take “conversational commerce” to a whole new level, potentially allowing your business to literally talk to your customers.

People are starting to use voice assistants to interact with companies, with 23% reporting asking for retail store info, such as location and hours, 14% reporting asking about product details, and 10% reporting looking for information on local businesses.

ShopClerk can help you save time and money, as well as give your customers what they’re asking for.