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A Comprehensive Guide to Augmented Reality in E-Commerce Development

By: Taru M.
14 Oct, 2021

What do you think is the biggest hurdle in online shopping? Well, most of us will answer that it does not provide the comfort of healing and touch that a brick-and-mortar shop offers. Right?! And what if you can achieve this? Wouldn’t it bring a revolution in the way we shop today online? Yeah, right?

That’s precisely what Augmented Reality in eCommerce is trying to achieve. Augmented Reality in online shopping tends to provide a better shopping experience to the customers by providing in-depth details about the product from the comfort of their homes. Before we see why and how Augmented Reality development is beneficial, let’s understand AR technology.

Index:

1. What is Augmented Reality?

2. How is E-Commerce using Augmented Reality?

3. There are various ways in which Augmented Reality in eCommerce is successfully used. Let’s have a look at some of them.

    a. Virtual try-on

    b. Recreating the In-store experience

    c. Preview Placement

    d. Interactive AR-enabled user manuals

    e. Social Media Filters

4. Which E-Commerce brands are already using Augmented Reality?

    a. Sephora

    b. IKEA

5. Benefits of using Augmented Reality in E-Commerce

    a. Creating a smooth customer journey

    b. Reducing returns

    c. Improving digital marketing

    d. Increase customer engagement

What is Augmented Reality?

As the name suggests, Augmented Reality augments the natural world that we live in. It is an extension of our surroundings so that we can witness the surroundings alive. Remember the game pokemon go? That is one of the best applications of AR. One can feel all the surroundings while going down the streets. You are fully aware of the environment. With a smartphone, you can feel your ambience in real without the need of clearing your room. Much Augmented Reality development software is trying to leverage this technology to revolutionize how we see and live our surroundings. Augment Reality in online shopping is one such area that has already seen an onset of this renaissance and soon will witness more.

How is E-Commerce using Augmented Reality?

AR allows customers to preview products and shop by experiencing the product details in depth from their homes. This offers them a better experience, and they are more likely to pick up a better product at once.

There are various ways in which Augmented Reality in eCommerce is successfully used. Let’s have a look at some of them.

1. Virtual try-on

Augment Reality in eCommerce shopping allows the customers to try the products in a natural environment. This helps in boosting the conversion rates. If this option is unavailable, a customer may not know how the product will suit them, which can increase the return rates. VTOs or virtual try-on solutions help the customers to make better-informed decisions about their purchases. Customers can see themselves wearing products on their screens of smartphones, thanks to AR!

Augmented Reality in online shopping also allows the customer to see how an object will look in real-world surroundings. For example, how a sofa might look after placing it in the house. This helps the customers visualize the 3D structure and make more conscious decisions paving the way for better sales and revenue.

2. Recreating the In-store experience

Recently we have seen an upsurge in android AR development and Apple AR development. More and more apps are trying to leverage AR and extend the environment during online shopping to make it appear like a brick-and-mortar.

Sony Electronics launched the TV AR app to show how will the sony TV look on the wall before a customer buys it. Many Augmented Reality development companies are working to build apps to revolutionize the ways of online shopping.

3. Preview Placement

A customer can preview how a product will look after being placed in their environment with AR technology. From setting the sofa in your drawing room to sunglasses, you can try different products in real-time illusion. For instance, a brand of DTC furniture makes the customer visualize how will the couches look in their living room. Their app uses the AR Kit to place the 3D model of sofas in the pictures taken by the customer from their iPhone and iPad.

4. Interactive AR-enabled user manuals

Many products come with massive manuals with instructions to use the product. In turn, this becomes very cumbersome for the customers who hardly even read the manual of an appliance and often underuse a product or even harm it sometimes. Now, there are AR-enabled user manuals that have come to the market. These are interactive as the user can respond to the actions and vice versa. Such manuals provide contextual support while the customer uses a piece of software, hardware, or application. Many such AR manuals scan the product and explain different buttons in real-life environments using graphical arrows and animations with text.

5. Social Media Filters

Another great advantage of Augmented Reality development! You might have used the AR filters on Instagram and Snapchat. These filters were earlier used just for fun, but now eCommerce industries have started seeing a massive scope of customer interest in such AR filters. It is a beautiful way for people to test how the product looks on them. This can boost audience engagement and help you to market your online services by getting tagged by people. This can increase your online media presence and help you give tough competition to the rest of the eCommerce brands in your niche.

Which E-Commerce brands are already using Augmented Reality?

Sephora

It helps customers to try out thousands of makeup products, including eyeshadows, lipstick, and others. It also provides a mechanism for the customers to go through the beauty tutorials and try them on their faces to learn how to achieve particular looks. Another feature, Color match, helps customers find the right colour shade for various skin tones by uploading their photos.

IKEA

The IKEA app helps customers reposition pieces of furniture in their homes to see how they would look like. This is possible with a smartphone with a camera.

Benefits of using Augmented Reality in E-Commerce

1. Creating a smooth customer journey

Augmented Reality in eCommerce has increased the potential of providing a smooth customer journey. Rather than gambling and returning a product, a customer can try it thoroughly in an extended environment and then choose to purchase it. The customer service support also reduces significantly because they can get the answers to many things with AR. For example, there’s no need of asking the dimensions of a sofa to the customer service team as the customer can themselves check that out by placing the couch in their living room by getting a 3D model with their smartphones.

2. Reducing returns

With AR, you can provide a customer with a lot of information that an image or video cannot. Giving an option to the customers to visualize the products and even try them on them helps them become more confident about their purchase. This reduces the chances of receiving unexpected results after purchase, leading to a higher return rate than conversion rate.

3. Improving digital marketing

Facebook has already decided to pilot its AR e-commerce ads. Google is looking to include 3D images of products that customers can visualize in the search results and then visit the sites.

4. Increase customer engagement

AR is highly interactive. It grasps the user’s attention and hooks them. This means that they will spend more time on your website, which will increase the chance of their buying products. This will lead to more excellent conversion rates. Even if users are not purchasing products, their devoting time will, in turn, leave an indelible impression on their minds of your products and your brands.

Conclusion:

Undoubtedly, Augmented Reality websites and Augmented Reality app development will have significant scope soon. The onset of AR technology has already started showing great results. eCommerce development companies have begun exploring ways to bring the right talent teams to carve the path for better enhancements in the E-commerce industry using AR technology.

If you are an eCommerce development company, you must consider including AR technology in your platform. Now is the right time to leverage this technology so that you can see yourself ahead of other eCommerce platforms and brands in the competition soon. Start by clearing your objectives. Ask where and why you will use the AR technology. Which Augmented Reality development software will you use? How will you use them, and how will you build the right team of required talent for this purpose?

After you are clear with the objectives and the technical part, think of the marketing strategies that you will apply to reach your target audience. Display in-app instructions and create shareable content.

It might get difficult for you to build the AR eCommerce product right from scratch. In this case, you can also think of partnering with an Augmented Reality development company. Such companies have the required knowledge base and experience in this niche and can help you save a lot of effort and time.

Augmented Reality in eCommerce is the next-generation technology that will undoubtedly impact consumer behaviour and the overall online shopping experience. Now that you are aware of AR’s various use cases and benefits in eCommerce, you can decide whether this technology is the right choice for your business. If you need further help or clarity, contact us now!

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Author
Taru M.

For over 18 years, Taru M. is a successful technology entrepreneur by profession and a tech enthusiast by spirit. She takes pride in offering expertise in her domain to business people's success across the globe. As a business woman and technology expert, she manages to keep her balance along with her family responsibilities. She did her masters in computers, and her work delivery shows the expertise of her education. Connect with her via Linkedin profile to know more about her exciting personality

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