Study shows marketers overlooking voice and image search

Posted on September 4, 2019


A study looking into the top priorities for marketers in the next 12 months has found that almost three quarters of respondents (72%) have no plans to target and optimise for voice search.

For this study, part of’s ‘What’s Trending? Top Creative and Digital Marketing Trends’ guide, more than 1,000 digital marketers and creative decision makers were surveyed. A mere 17% of respondents, less than one in five, have already made plans or will draw up plans to target voice search over the next 12 months.

This is despite an Adobe study stating that consumers were having a more positive outlook on voice search. Just last month, this study showed that just under half of consumers (47%) were using voice assistants such as Alexa and Google Home for general web searches. Furthermore, an eMarketer study also showed that four in 10 US adults were engaging voice search into some kind of shopping-related activity.

With not many marketers focusing on this medium, it presents an opportunity for businesses to get ahead of their competitors over the next 12 months. As well as voice search, image search is another area that marketers are overlooking, with only 35% of marketers stating they will optimise for visual search in the coming year.

So what are marketers prioritising?

The biggest areas that marketers will be prioritising this year will be video marketing, with just over three quarters (76%), stating that this will be the top priority for the next 12 months. Included in most video marketing plans include plans to use social media platforms, with Instagram Stories and Facebook videos topping the list. Following this, more than half (52%) are targeting GIFs, with 28% focusing on live streams and 21% on Instagram’s IGTV.

One omission from these plans appears to be YouTube. This is the biggest video publishing platform in the world, giving it a significantly larger reach than social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, so it is surprising that marketers are overlooking this.

Savvy marketers may want to consider being different to other content creators and focus on something that will make them unique and stand out. It would appear that voice search could be the way to go.


Alan Littler

Account Executive at Engage Web
Drawing from a broad pool of experience that ranges from university studies in English Language to his work as a medical receptionist in a busy GP practice, Alan fits right at home as Engage Web’s Account Executive.

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