Most people aren't using Amazon's Alexa to make purchases, according to new report

  • According to a report published by The Information, only 2% of people who own Amazon Alexa-enabled devices like the Echo have used them to make an online purchase in 2018.
  • Of those 2% who bought something, 90% of them didn’t make any additional purchases through Alexa, according to the report.
  • Amazon has sold 50 million Alexa-enabled devices, according to the report.

It turns out that while tens of millions of people are buying Amazon Alexa-enabled smart home devices like the Echo, only a small fraction of those people are using them to make purchases.

According to a new report published by The Information, which we first saw via Gizmodo, most people who own Alexa-enabled devices don’t use them for shopping. Amazon’s virtual assistant software is marketed as something that can make everyday tasks easier – like adjusting smart home settings, playing music, taking notes, and online shopping – but only 2% of people who use Alexa have actually used it to buy something in 2018, The Information’s Priya Anand reports, citing sources familiar with the company’s stats.

And of those 2% who made a purchase, 90% didn’t make any additional purchases after their first, according to Gizmodo.

Amazon hasn’t released the exact number of Alexa-enabled devices its sold, but sources who spoke to The Information put that number at about 50 million units, according to Gizmodo. The report also revealed that a higher percentage of Alexa-enabled device owners – about 20% – use the assistant to check in on online orders that they probably made on their phones or computers.

In fact, because so few people are actually using Alexa for online purchases, Amazon hasn’t been able to identify any major trends in their buying behaviour, according to Tech Times, but people who do make purchases through Alexa tend to buy things like home supplies, rather than anything that would require looking through reviews or comparing with other options.

So while Amazon’s Alexa is able to make some aspects of life easier, using voice commands to shop online just hasn’t become a habit for most people, at least not yet.

Read the full report from The Information here.

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