The Power of AR in Retail
Surprisingly enough, only 9% of the $3 trillion spent in commerce annually is spent online. Therefore, offline brand awareness and customer loyalty are more important than ever, something that augmented reality (AR) tools could completely revolutionize. According to Gartner, “by 2020, 100 million consumers will shop in AR online and in-store,” and around 75% of customers already expect retailers to offer an AR experience. It has won over bands like Converse, IKEA, Lacoste, MTW, Tesco, and Zara, who create interactive content for a clientele now attuned to the virtual world.
Implementing AR in Shopping and Digital Customer Experience
1. True Scale Virtual Modelling
Strategies like Buy Online, Pick Up in Store have offered a way for in-store retailers to fight back against giants like Amazon and attract online shoppers – as 44% of whom say picking up their online purchase at the store is their favorite aspect of retail. Interestingly, while online shopping, viewing 3D models using augmented reality has been shown to increase conversion by up to 250%. Many retailers have caught onto this. Argos introduced an AR shopping app to visualize high ticket items before purchasing. The Ikea Place app also gives customers a 3D view of how furniture will look where they want to put it. These strategies increase conversion, boost customers’ satisfaction with their purchases, and reduce returns, offering promising results for building brand loyalty.
2. Try Now, Buy Now
The fashion and beauty industry has also tapped into AR’s capacity to increase sales and engagement. Customers can now “try on” Sephora make-up products from their smartphone, and virtually wear sneakers from Gucci. All this has been made possible by AR, which provides virtual representations of customers’ purchases.
3. AR wayfinding
Finally, AR wayfinding can guide customers with directional prompts overlaid onto any real-world setting, suggest the most efficient route to an airport gate or stadium seats. From taking an interactive tour around museums to finding your way through a hospital, AR can display directions directly onto the path you are taking, provide turn-by-turn audio prompts for visually impaired users, display the length of the trip and alternative routes. AR Wayfinding can also help streamline customer flow where crowds need to be controlled, an undeniable advantage in 2021. London’s Gatwick airport has already deployed AR technology, with 2,000 indoor beacons providing an indoor navigation system that can be used to locate fellow travelers, gates, amenities, lounges, luggage carousels, exits, information counters, and car desks.
Untitled Project: Leading the Way for Indoor Wayfinding in Singapore
Over seven years, Untitled Project has become one of Singapore’s leading AR filter companies, leading the way with world-class brand partners to utilize AR for increased customer engagement. Launched Q4 2020, Lightmap is a comprehensive wayfinding system which is highly customizable and the best solution for introducing AR wayfinding if developing your own custom app is not the path for you. Its features include:
– Indoor A–B Wayfinding: To navigate from point A to point B as quickly and efficiently as possible.
– Find My Family: To locale fellow users quickly and safely in busy environments.
– Covid Safety: To avoid high-traffic areas, busy, and potentially dangerous areas.
– Near Me Now: To locate nearby offers related to users’ interests.
– Voice Search: To search for products, people, and services using voice commands.
– Send Lightmap: To create custom lightmaps, leaving a trail for others to find the user.