Slang in 2020: Year in Review | A Snapshot
Towards the end of each year, I try to take a weekend off to zoom out, to reflect on all we did as a company in the last year and think about where the voice industry is heading. Will write a more detailed one sharing my thoughts on the industry itself, but for now let's talk about Slang.
Here are some exciting things we did last year:
We evolved from VAX to VAaaS
Perhaps the most significant development for Slang was our evolution to a Voice Assistant as a Service (VAaaS) Platform. With this pivot, e-commerce brands can now add Voice Assistants to their apps in less than 30 mins!
Read here to know what makes this possible.
CoVid19 Voice Tracker
We created a CoVid19 Dashboard with Voice Search. We made this to make sure emergent users like our parents and relatives can get reliable data on CoVid19 via voice in either English or Hindi. Watch how it works and why we build it. You can also read this blog which describes the idea behind it and the process of creating it.
Customer round-up: 400% increase in customer interests
We saw a 400% increase in the interest to add In-App Voice Assistants since last year. We are already working with marquee brands in Retail, such as Big Basket, Udaan, P&G, and Trainman, SpiceJet, Yuyii in Travel. We are also working with some unique customers such as the popular recruitment portal Shine by HTMedia.
Slang Family Grew Bigger!
This year Slang family grew by 23% to 21 people. We created a new “End User Success” team with the sole focus on making sure not just our immediate customers (ie the brands) succeed, but their customers (ie the end-users of the apps) too are able to succeed with Slang.
A lot of people learnt about WFH during the year and they were suddenly pushed to it. Luckily at Slang, we were used to WFH even earlier. We used to work from office only 3 days a week in general. Tuesdays and Thursdays were no-meeting days (well atleast for the engineering team. I would try and meet customers typically on these days).
When pandemic hit, we became WFH first, just like everyone else. But we wanted to take this one step further. We realized that we could actually become a formal WFH first company, even if things settle down. So far so good but then the urge to go back to office keeps kicking in. Lets see how it goes in 2021
Webinar: Voice Assistant in eCommerce apps
We conducted a webinar on "Voice Assistant in eCommerce apps", a panel discussion with 6 of the biggest names like Flipkart, Amazon, Voicebot and Haptik in the industry. It had a historic turnout. 230+ people tuned in on a weekday to hear about what's going on in the industry.
Bummers in 2020
Not everything goes the way we wanted. And 2020 was especially painful the way it started.
We were quite excited for a soon-to-be-unicorn to try out Slang. They were really passionate about this subject and we were also super excited. But unfortunately, the co-founder with whom we were engaging with quit, and things quickly changed inside the company that we could not find another champion as passionate.
One of our early adopter customers was going to roll out Slang and we were about to talk about to get started. But Covid hit and they because more cautious in their expenditure and it dropped down on priority.
Voice & e-commerce in 2020
We closed the year with a Voice paper about how Voice is enabling brands to bridge the gap between India and Bharat.
Here are some interesting insights from the the paper :
- 67% of online shoppers during these festive sales came from Tier 2 cities and beyond.
- Grocery e-commerce grew by 4x during the pandemic. Grocery is the one of the categories where customers and brands have shown a higher interest in Voice Assistants.
- Voice Searches grew 3X last year in India. They had been growing 270% Year on Year in 2019. Hindi Voice Searches at 400%
- Amazon received its highest single-day voice requests of over 1 million on the apps.
- India is leading the way for in-app voice assistant adoption. SpiceJet, Udaan, P&G, Flipkart, Amazon, Jio and many others have already added voice assistants to their apps.
Get more such insights in this voice paper - “Voice, the Bridge to Bharat”.
World-wide 2020 ended well for us. We were lucky unlike potentially many others who had to endure harder times. But we cant wait for 2021.
Have a happy new year!