2021 is definitely the year where luxury brands have taken their stores to their customers over their customers coming to them. With augmented reality, luxury brands from Chanel to Dior have curated immersive customer experiences that will make any customer remember them!
Presently with COVID19, AR-integrated luxury shopping is more essential than innovative. And therefore, the real question is about the place of augmented reality in luxury retail in a post-COVID19 world.
How Does Augmented Reality Shopping Work?
Augmented Reality shopping is the use of digital technology to improve and augment shopping experiences in a way that seems genuine, engaging, and emotive.
As Geoffrey Perez, the Head of Luxury at Snapchat puts it – “Luxury brands build and extend a legacy. To do this, they need to be where their audience is, and if they don’t speak to them right away, they run the risk of losing them permanently. Considering that visual communication is at the heart of ‘Snapchat’s Generation,’ they need to talk to them now.”
How Top Brands Embed AR Into Customer Experiences?
With an 87% rise in social media usage with both a high number of people using it and more time being spent on it, brands can get boost visibility only and only by connecting with customers through a virtual setting.
Furthermore, as Greenlight Insights and Forbes note – “…augmented reality devices and the content will hit a massive $36.4 billion in 2023…That’s 11 times higher than the estimated $3.4 billion in revenue in 2019.”
This makes it more important than ever to understand the most popular AR-based strategies being used and which luxury brands are using them to disrupt the industry.
Augmented Reality Filters
Research has shown that luxury brands that make use of AR can keep their customers engages for an average of 75 seconds, as compared to the regular engagement time of 2.5 seconds.
Tapping into this statistic, Dior launched a series of Snapchat and Facebook filters that allowed users to try on over-the-shoulder accessories including hats, sunglasses, and more.
Ray-ban launched an AR filter that allowed users to try on Ray-ban sunglasses as well as interact with them in a fun and quirky way. Launched around Christmas, the filter placed reindeer horns on people’s heads and let them add funky sound effects and take videos with the same.
Prada took a different direction by creating an AR filter that is not related to its product range per se, but allowed users to play a personality game and understand their personality traits with the alphabets – ‘P’, ‘R’, ‘A’, ‘D’, ‘A’.
Augmented Reality Mirrors
Augmented reality mirrors are a notch-up version of AR-integrated shopping because they can let users try on outfits, find their best fit, and analyze the outfit from multiple angles.
Also known as magic mirrors, here are some of the top brands that are making use of magic mirrors to help customers discover their personal style:
In partnership with ModiFace, L’Oreal released an application called “Style My Hair” that helps customers try on different hair colors on live video. With an AR-based mirror, the application can apply the color to one’s hair strand by strand and provide a wholistic look.
A global beauty favorite – Sephora, did not stay behind in the AR game. With a virtual artist application, Sephora created an AR mirror to allow users to try on their products all from lipsticks to eyeshadows and even false lashes!
Augmented Reality Trial Rooms
Another common use case for immersive AR experiences within the luxury fashion industry includes virtual try-on. Brands who have successfully integrated this include:
The famous Swiss luxury watch brand – Baume partnered with Hapticmedia to provide customers with 3D product presentations for their watches. This option allows users to customize and curate unique watch designs as well as virtually try watches on their wrists.
The Head of Baume, Marie Chassot says – The results of these technological innovations are spectacular: 3D rendering that is virtually identical to the physical watch; perfect fluidity for increased configurator user-friendliness, and an augmented reality wristband that enables customers to try on their watch without physically handling it.
By way of AR advertisements on Facebook, Michael Kors allows its users to try on their sunglasses on their own faces. This is a terrific example of how AR-based try-on work because customers can try glasses on their faces and then make purchases directly from Facebook.
Augmented Reality Fashion Shows
Fashion shows and runways have always been resource-heavy and financially consuming. And with the pandemic setting, the runaway experience has completed become non-democratic owing to social distancing norms and accessibility.
But with AR stepping in, fashion shows can now be hosted with virtual models. And it doesn’t stop there, because these virtual fashion shows and runaways can be experienced by viewers in the comfort of their own living rooms.
Recently, Adwoa Aboah, a British fashion model participated in the AR catwalk at the London Fashion Week as part of experimenting with the idea of AR fashion shows.