As technology progresses, the line between the physical and digital worlds continues to blur. What was once only imagined in science fiction stories of the past is now becoming reality with extended reality (XR) applications.
Many sellers have already caught on to the advertising potential for XR, integrating it into existing product listings and websites. Considering the rapid adoption of online shopping due to the current pandemic, it’s safe to say extended reality is changing the ecommerce industry for good.
In this blog, we aim to explore why.
XR Opens Doors to New Digital Experiences
XR benefits buyers, sellers and the ecommerce industry as a whole. As marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart, Target and Houzz replace traditional, static product images with fully interactive, 3D models provided by companies like Tulfa, customers flock to experience convenience and innovation in action.
Sellers can use any CGI renderings to craft immersive, fully realized virtual experiences to take customers into their world like never before. XR enables them to “try” products in their own home before buying them. Products like clothes, shoes and furniture have always had high return rates due to sizing problems, but XR helps to alleviate that.
Because XR benefits buyers and sellers, it automatically benefits the ecommerce industry. As obvious as this is, the importance of this innovative technology cannot be understated. Static images have been used to market products since the inception of modern advertising. Their interactivity, utility, cost, and, at this point, novelty give 3D models, and consequently XR, the potential to become the new standard for product imagery.
As previously stated, XR gives shoppers the ability to “try” products before buying them. While augmented reality began as a novel concept, technology has progressed to the point where it actually changes the way people shop.
Companies like Nike are integrating this technology into smartphone apps that are easily accessible for anyone who owns a smartphone. Specifically, Nike is trying to solve the wrong-shoe-size problem that many people struggle with when buying footwear. In a feat of real-life sci-fi, the company’s official app actually uses a user’s phone camera to scan their foot to determine its size, following up with a recommendation for what to purchase.
Outside of mobile devices, XR is also widely used in web-based VR platforms and VR video games. This software is compatible with VR headsets, allowing users to walk through a virtual store or attend a virtual fashion show. Rapper Travis Scott has even hosted a virtual concert in the popular video game Fortnite that drew over 12 million players.
Numbers Don’t Lie
Businesses integrating augmented reality into their marketing is a risk that seems to be paying off—especially in the long run.
According to eMarketer, 83.1 million U.S. consumers are using augmented reality every month. If this number isn’t surprising, let us put it into a fraction—that’s one-fourth of the entire American population.
The data undeniably proves XR’s rapid adoption by both buyers and sellers. A recent Accenture study details consumer motivation for trying out immersive technologies when shopping online. These data points include:
52% – viewing products without visiting the store
42% – assessing product features and capabilities
42% – experiencing products before purchasing
39% – increasing confidence in purchasing decision
29% – changing, customizing or personalizing products
Not enough data for you? Here’s some more:
72% of consumers purchased items they weren’t planning on buying due to AR (ThinkMobiles)
47% of consumers would pay more for a product they can customize in AR (Accenture)
71 percent of consumers would shop with a business more often if they used AR (ThreeKit)
It’s not just about conversions. XR saves companies valuable time and resources, increasing productivity and efficiency. Companies like VNTANA offer XR platforms and services that are more affordable faster to create and implement while maintaining high visual fidelity.
Don’t Wait to Innovate
Competition is a difficult but essential part of any industry. Businesses always need to improve to exceed both their competitors’ and customers’ expectations.
Don’t let your business get left behind. Partner with Tulfa to integrate extended reality into your digital shelf. Shoot us an email or reach out to us on social media. As one of ecommerce’s leading content agencies, we make sure customers notice your products. Check out our services for more information and a free sample of our work.