Reinvigorating the Retail Industry Using Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality

How augmented reality can help and benefit retail businesses?

The proliferation of mobile devices has become a new digital experience for customers, enabling the rise of new disruption trends in businesses. Following the trend, augmented reality (AR) has emerged as an advanced, innovative technology that permits enterprises to interact with consumers on their mobile devices. This new immersive technology is relentlessly gaining ground in mainstream businesses, revolutionizing every aspect of a company. Now, retailers are significantly exploring AR’s capabilities to deliver enhanced customer experience.

Traditionally, the retail industry relied on print advertising campaigns or other promotional channels for their products. But today, all the marketing efforts are merged into the comprehensive consumer experience with the help of augmented reality.

AR gives buyers access to see a product virtually before the purchase. As this technology is extremely beneficial to both consumers and retailers, AR is becoming a disruptive technology that retailers are adopting to drive innovation and improve customer experience and retention.

 

Bolstering Brand Exposure

With the introduction of Apple’s ARKit and Google’s ARCore, AR is no longer a future term for retailers. The technology typically allows users to visualize a virtual representation of products in 3D, to scale and in their intended environment. It also allows a shopper to make better judgments, while eliminating the need to measure and verify dimensions. Using this technology customers may either buy directly online or go to the store to complete their purchase.

A majority of retail brands already use AR, putting the products and services they offer at the center of their customers’ outreach. For instance, Lacoste’s LCST Lacoste AR app enables customers to virtually try on shoes. The app acts as a point of interaction for AR-enhanced promotional postcards, as well as window displays and in-store signage. Macy’s uses a 3D Cloud-based AR API to make 3D AR furniture available in their native iOS app. It allows customers to buy furniture using Macy’s native iOS app by tapping the “View In My Room” button on the product detail page of the furniture that they are interested in visualizing. 

By leveraging augmented reality, retailers can improve conversion rates and lower spending on product advertising, leading to improved business profitability. The technology has the potential to improve navigation around warehouse territory when big spaces and many inventory items are involved. AR does not only eliminate a point of friction between consumer viewing and buying the product, but it also makes a retailer remain competitive.

In the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, augmented reality has been a monumental impact on retail. As people are restrained to stay home, AR became the new normal to explore products customers want and place an order. A report shows that roughly 50 percent of consumers shop more on mobile than in-store. In this scenario, AR is transforming the customer journey into an immersive, visually-interactive experience.