How AR is Driving the Future of Customer Experience

As modern consumer trends continue to evolve, consumers are showing increasing interest in doing and experiencing things rather than simply purchasing products. What this means for retailers is a constant need to come up with new ways to guide and engage consumers at every step of the consumer journey.

One of the ways retailers can overcome this challenge is by blending innovative technology with the customer experience they offer. More than just a tool to enhance customer experience, technology is also being harnessed by retail brands to improve product personalization and help them stand out from their competition.

One such innovative technology quickly gaining steam in retail is Augmented Reality.

Augmented Reality in Retail

Augmented Reality is absolutely transforming in-store experiences, with many experiences focused around tailoring consumers’ shopper journeys to their individual needs. In addition to delivering the experiences consumers crave, AR-driven experiences offer brands limitless opportunities to deepen their consumer relationships. Using everything from 3D overlays to interactive touch tables, retailers are successfully leveraging AR to optimize shopper journeys and drive more revenue.

3 Ways AR Optimizes Shopper Journeys

Simplifies Decision Making

AR can give shoppers a visual representation of a product before they purchase it. Take clothing as an example. Clothing retailers are turning to AR kiosks to allow consumers to visualize what they’d look like wearing different clothes and colors without having to try them on in changing rooms. This simplifies decision making by reducing buyer uncertainty, thus improving overall customer satisfaction.

For retailers, AR kiosks offer several benefits, including shoppers spending less time in-store, fewer returns, and an easier way to gather useful conversion data based on which items are tried and purchased the most.

Offers More Detailed Information

AR product overlays are being used to display virtually everything from detailed descriptions and customer reviews to similar product recommendations and social media engagement. Some retailers and automotive brands are even replacing user manuals altogether, opting instead for AR integrated apps that offer users more information on whatever part of the product they’re pointing their phone’s camera at.

Going beyond products, AR helps retailers to better understand their customers. How well do you really know your customers? In addition to sales-based data and metrics, AR enables retailers to collect valuable data on customer behavior, allowing them to fine-tune their marketing to better serve their customers. Additionally, the same data can even be leveraged by retailers to further influence customer decisions and guide them along their shopper journeys.

Increases Perceived Value

Consumers value experiences more than they do the products themselves, and retailers that understand this are thriving. Take Apple as an example. There’s a reason why Apple sells its products in dedicated stores, why their packaging is minimalistic, and why Apple products are so simple to use. Apple doesn’t just sell products — they sell experiences. And consumers are more than happy to pay a premium for an Apple product.

Therefore, the more value consumers attach to product experience, the more money they’re willing to pay for the product. In that regard, AR works. Consumer research shows that 40% of shoppers are willing to pay more for products they experience through AR, and a staggering 72% admitted to purchasing products they hadn’t planned on buying thanks to AR-driven experiences. All of this can be directly attributed to the way AR experiences increase perceived value.

Take Your Customer Experience to the Next Level

Do you want to really get to know your customer using data gathered through in-store experiences? Or perhaps you want to step up your game and deliver personalized shopping experiences? Whatever your reasons for choosing to incorporate AR into your retail operations, you need to ensure you work with a customer experience design company that knows what it’s doing. Over the years, we’ve worked with retail giants like Samsung and Nike to create experiential retail designs that delivered measurable results, and we’re confident we can help you too. Contact Untitled Project today to get started.