eCommerce has made various changes since its inception to enhance the customer experience and bring the maximum number of users into the fence. Kudos to these changes; ecommerce has made it to the preference list of customers for their regular shopping. Be it the availability of options or the convenience of ordering from home, eCommerce has surpassed traditional commerce in recent years.
Still, there is a factor that makes traditional shopping superior to eCommerce. The factor is experiencing the product before buying. In an eCommerce store, you can not physically touch the product like in a brick-and-mortar store. So, AR/VR, also known as Virtual Try-Ons (VTOs), has stepped into the landscape and eliminated the limitation to a significant extent. Let’s discuss all AR/VR and how it has changed the eCommerce scenario for the users-
An Introduction to AR and VR: Understanding the Basics
AR and VR represent Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, respectively, enhancing how you virtually feel an object or space. While AR and VR are not interconnected, the working principle is still the same. Augmented reality helps you experience a virtual product on your smartphone in your surroundings. On the other hand, VR is more digital, requiring a headset to take you to a virtual world. With VR, your surroundings change entirely, and you find yourself in a new place.
With its capabilities, AR/VR is helping eCommerce users to better experience the products listed in the store before buying them. This core competency pushes smart decision-making for the users.
AR and VR in eCommerce: The Numbers Behind the Integration
Let’s Understand the Increasing Role of AR/VR in The Retail Industry with Some Real-Time Facts and Figures-
- The Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality market in the Retail industry were estimated to have a worth of $3.79 billion in 2021, which is expected to increase to $17.86 billion by 2028.
- The growth has projected a CAGR of 24.8% in the forecasted period.
- North America accounted for the maximum share of AR/VR use in eCommerce with 42.4%.
- According to a consumer survey conducted by Google, it was found that more than 66% of users would like to use AR technology for a better shopping experience.
Why Should an eCommerce Outlet Invest in AR & VR Technology?
AR/VR has gifted the following benefits and uses cases to the eCommerce industry-
1. Virtual Try-Ons
With Virtual Try-Ons, spectacles, glasses, shoes, jackets, or anything, you can virtually try everything to see if it suits you. No more hustles in the trial room to put on and off the clothes one after another. With VTOs, you no longer need to doubt what that apparel will look like.
2. Better buying experience
Nothing can beat the experience when you can feel the product in your surroundings before purchasing. Even in offline shopping, you can see the product in the store only. But AR brings the product to your home within seconds. While buying a couch for your living room, you can see exactly how it will look via AR. Similarly, you can experience a wall picture in your hall with a few clicks.
When you can experience the product in your home, it is another level of convenience. So, AR/VR integration in the eCommerce experience makes shopping much more convenient for users. It helps the consumers to explore the product without visiting the physical stores. At the same time, it enables the user to experience the capabilities and features first-hand.
When we have to shop for different households by visiting different stores, it might take more than a week to complete the task. On the other hand, AR/VR support in eCommerce assists in completing the shopping within hours. Be it furniture, curtain sets, electronics, or decoratives at home; you can quickly evaluate it with the etiquette of your home.
5. Cost efficient
AR/VR helps save costs by ensuring that the products you buy fit your needs. A significant problem in ecommerce lies in what we buy and if it really matches our expectations. The complicated return process leaves the consumer with the product with no use. So, AR/VR helps experience the product and buy only when it meets with the preference.
6. Real-life simulation
Nothing might be better than visualizing a pair of shoes on your feet before making the purchase. AR/VR simulation helps you visualize anything, from furniture to cosmetics, from apparel to footwear, in real-time. You can even see the goggles on your eyes and then make the purchase when satisfied.
7. Building virtual store
If AR is not satisfying you and visiting the store is still your foremost preference, VR brings the whole store to your home. With assistance from virtual reality, you can wear the headset and experience the entire store in your living room only. Roam around the store, perceive the inventory, and make the decision.
8. Preview Placement
A Sofa set might be sparkling in a furniture store app but might not grace in your living room. So, AR makes sure that you can experience everything in your home before making the purchase. Here, it is not just about the look, but it even helps you to perform sizing for purchases.
Experience the Power of AR/VR with Emizentech’s Innovative ecommerce Solutions
Real-time Implementation of AR/VR in eCommerce
The use of AR/VR is implemented by businesses to deliver a seamless experience to their customers. Let’s talk about some companies which have instilled this new concept in their operations and escalated the buying experience for their customers-
IKEA is one of those businesses that have equipped their operations with AR/VR technology. With the IKEA app and IKEA Place App, you can bring the furniture to your home without purchasing, visiting, or paying for it. Just open the app, set the camera on the space you want to install the furniture and try 100s of combinations quickly. With the IKEA Place app, you can decorate and customize your room with different types of furniture within hours. The best thing is that you can visualize the complete setup before making the purchase. Once you are satisfied with the furniture’s look, buy and bring it to your home.
2. Amazon Augmented Reality
Similar to that of IKEA, amazon is providing AR support to their customers for the better purchasing experience, especially for furniture. Users can visualize the furniture in their home space to see if it matches the theme. Similarly, the platform also provides the Virtual Try-Ons where the users can try the wearables to know if they fit their personality. The platform’s new feature has enhanced the user experience and made it easier to feel more confident while buying products online.
3. BMW Augmented Reality
The car manufacturer giant BMW has introduced an exciting concept of AR where the customers can now visualize the car they want and then ask the firm to manufacture it for them. To be simple, the customer can walk into the showroom, use AR technology to check the different colors and designs on the car, and select the best one. BMW is known for its customization of colors. However, it is excellent if the customers can have a good idea about how their car will look in a particular color.
Lenskart, an Indian eye care product giant, has been one of the first brands to introduce AR technology in Business in their home market. With the Lenskart app, customers can try hundreds of specs, goggles, and sunglasses on their faces from different angles. The feature has helped the customers to leverage a better shopping experience by choosing the product which suits best on their face. At the same time, the technology has also reduced the exchange and return transactions for the brand.
Cost of Implementing AR/VR in eCommerce
Just like developing an eCommerce store demands a particular investment, integrating AR/VR into an eCommerce business also requires investment. However, the cost of implementing AR/VR in eCommerce varies depending on various factors. Some of the factors that determine the cost of implementing AR/VR into eCommerce are but are not limited to-
- Type and complexity of AR/VR use case (Product Try-Ons are the most complex while Navigation is the least complex).
- The scale of the solution (size of your store, shopping center, product catalog, etc.)
- Type of targeted devices (AR glasses, tablet/smartphone, AR mirrors)
- 3D model development
- Integration with the eCommerce ecosystem
- Cost of cloud services
However, you can consider the estimated cost of implementing AR/VR in your ecommerce store or business starting at $25k-40k.
How AR/VR integration can help your business grow?
AR/VR integration is helping brands establish better relationships with their customers. However, the concept is not limited just to international brands, and even you can leverage the benefits for your business. You can expect the following benefits from AR/VR integration in your business-
a. Increase in customer engagement
Providing the option of visualizing the product before purchasing helps customers to be more connected with the brand. AR/VR engages the users on the site. The more time customers spend on the site, the more the chances they will purchase something. Even if the cart doesn’t come to the billing counter, your store has already reserved a place in the customer’s mind.
b. Helps reach new customers
AR/VR is still a concept that attracts customers. So, it’s the best time to draw the customer by implementing the technology in your business. Providing the AR/VR experience to the customer will generate the mouth marketing of your business. So, there is a significant chance that the customer will visit the store.
c. Reduce the returns
The return rate is something that impacts the profitability of the business. AR/VR reduces the chances of return. The major reason behind customers returning the product are display issues (how it looks at the residence/place), size issues (dimensions), or if it suits or not (in the case of apparel). Using AR/VR ensures that customers can analyze the overall product according to specific needs and thus make decisions. So, it reduces the chances of returns to a significant extent.
d. More carts to the billing counter
There are several products that interest the customers. However, as long as the customer only has access to pictures of that product, it’s not easy to decide. So, AR/VR, by enabling the real-time visualization of products, helps in better decision-making for the customers.
e. Competitive advantages
No matter what business you are into, thousands of other providers are already in the same niche. So, AR/VR reserves the competitive advantages to the companies as very few firms are instilling the use of augmented reality and virtual reality in their operations. Providing a unique customer experience delivers a competitive advantage to the business.
How Emizentech Can Help you?
Emizentech is a well-known name in the IT industry delivering eCommerce, web development, app development, IoT, AR/VR, blockchain, and metaverse services to their clients. We have been working in the industry for around a decade and have come a long way, completing hundreds of projects for clients. Emizentech has skilled experts for AR/VR integration in different platforms. At the same time, no need to interpret the reputation in eCommerce development as we have achieved mastery in the same. Both technologies are at our fingertips, and integrating them might do wonders for you.
If you are planning for the same but have some questions in mind, Emizentech also provides an hour of free consultation for you to discuss the idea and clear all the queries. So, Sign up for the same, book an appointment and take the first step to make your ecommerce store even more virtually explored.
As usual, eCommerce is continuously upgrading itself with the latest technological trends. This time, it is about AR/VR integration in eCommerce, where the technology enhances the user experience significantly. The concept allows the customer to feel the product in real-time and thus make the purchasing decision. Be it the furniture or apparel, the customers can visualize to see if it suits them. Due to the same, businesses can deliver enhanced services to their target audience. AR/VR integration has reduced the chances of returns, increased profitability, and fostered the business-customer relationship.