6 Top Voice Tasks by Real Humans


By Colleen Fahey, with special thanks to Susan Westwater and Scot Westwater

If you’re planning to create a voice-enabled app in the next year or two, you’ll want to know what real people use them to do. And under what circumstances.

Enter the 2021 Voice Consumer Index by Vixen Labs, this comprehensive study looked into the voice behaviors adopted by people in the U.S., UK and Germany. What are the top behaviors? Well, that’s actually a trick question because there’s no blanket answer. 

It turns out that voice assistants get asked to perform different tasks depending on the business sector with which that person is interacting. The sectors studied by Vixen Labs were finance, food delivery, healthcare, retail, travel, entertainment and consumer packaged goods.  

Let’s compare the top voice tasks in finance, food and healthcare.

Task #1 

  • Banking/Finance:  Pay my bills
  • Food Delivery:       Find restaurant address or hours
  • Healthcare:           Learn more about a disease

Task #2

  • Banking/Finance:  Check my balance
  • Food Delivery:       Search for nearby restaurants or cafes
  • Healthcare:            Search symptoms

Task #3

  •  Banking/Finance:  Get directions to physical location
  • Food Delivery:        Find answers to common questions
  • Healthcare:             Find answers to common questions

Task #4

  • Banking/Finance:   Make a transaction
  • Food Delivery:        Research a restaurant’s menu, pricing or availability
  • Healthcare:             Look up treatment options

Task #5

  • Banking/Finance:     Update my account details
  • Food Delivery:        Check my delivery status
  • Healthcare:             Find a doctor or specialist

Task #6

  • Banking/Finance: Find the nearest ATM
  • Food Delivery:      Complete my food purchase
  • Healthcare:         Take a symptom assessment

By comparing the behaviors, you may begin to get hints of the different paths to purchase and where your marketing can influence behavior along them.

You might even begin to draw conclusions about velocity. For instance, if the top tasks correspond with any kind of chronological order (this is speculation, it’s not in the research), by Task #5, food delivery purchasers are already checking their delivery status at the same stage that someone engaging with the healthcare sector is beginning to search for a doctor.

Photo by Omid Armin on Unsplash