In recent years, the behavior of the buyers with respect to online purchasing has been changed completely. In fact, it is not incorrect to say that the shopping habits of customers have changed. Instead of using the laptops for desktops, customers have started purchasing the products with the help of their smartphones.
According to the Statista report, around 80% of the customers use their smartphones to take a look over the product and comparing the prices. It has also been stated that 79% of mobile users have made their purchases online with the help of their smartphones.
Since customers are moving towards smartphones for completing purchases and transactions, also, their expectations related to product personalization are also changing at a dynamic speed. Now, it becomes quite necessary for the shopping experience focused around them across all the touchpoints, either it is in-store, web, or mobile as well. The customers want to try out the products and check them in live environments or taste and wear.
There are a lot of brands available that usually face difficulty while meeting the expectations of the consumers with respect to the personalization in the products. This can automatically lead towards losing up potential customers for facing the sharp slowdown in the growth of the business. Now, the major question is, how can we deal with this challenging situation? Well, here, augmented reality plays an important role. It helps a lot in improving the buyer’s product visualization journey.
What Is Exactly The Augmented Reality?
The word augmented has been originated from the word augment. It means to enhance or to append something. Augmented reality is actually a type of interactive technology that has been highly based upon the reality-based display environment. It actually superimposes the capabilities of computer-generated images along with sound, text, and effects so that the real-world experience of the user can get improved.
The augmented reality technology also superimposes or affects the digital elements to a live view, usually with the help of a camera on a mobile phone.
What Is The Role Of Augmented Reality?
If you are one of those who love using Snapchat, then you have likely not missed the filters available there. These filters are actually augmented reality.
Yes, augmented reality is not at an all completely new technology that has been used in e-commerce or any other sector. This technology actually originated in the year 1968 at Harvard University by an electrical engineering professor. Over these years, the technology has been crowned with some revolutionary phases. And also, in the year 2011 to 2013, it has taken a sharp move towards growth. In the year 2014, Google released a wearable augmented reality device named Google glasses.
Thereafter, Snapchat also introduced its snap lenses, known as spectacles. It was a unique feature that helps the users in adding motions or graphics to the videos and photos as well. While following the same trend, there are several E-Commerce platforms like Shopify that have given the buyers a relatively new method of experiencing the products.
What Is The Role Of Augmented Reality In The Retail World?
There is a bit difference between the expectation of the brands and the thinking pattern of the purchaser. In order to understand the concept, let’s take some simple examples.
If you are willing to purchase a smartwatch then, first of all, you need to feel like:
- How it will look on your hand,
- The right color, and
- How it will fit you before you buy it
Between both the retailer and the purchaser, there is a gap created between the physical world as well as a digital world. Because of this gap, the buyers can easily view the products in the digital world but cannot interact with the person in the physical world. That is why augmented reality exists. Yes, this technology offers unique solutions that help in limiting the problem. The augmented reality feature helps in bringing out the better of the two worlds.
Major technologies that have been involved in augmented reality
Till now, we have clarified the concept and role of augmented reality in the E-Commerce industry. Now, it is important to know about the technologies that augmented reality uses.
Marker Based Augmented Reality
In this technology, your smartphone camera gets utilized, and the marker yields the result whenever the visual pointers get sensed by the reader. As long as anything has enough visual soul points, it can be considered as the visual marker. In the marker-based augmented reality, the images are important to be recognized completely. In this technology, you can easily get an exact idea that would exactly the application is searching for while getting the frames of the cameras. The applications that are introduced nowadays are highly based on this marker-based technology.
Markerless Augmented Reality
This technology is highly opposed to the marker-based augmented reality. In this technology, no visual marker is required. Additionally, you do not need to have any additional knowledge in regard to the user’s environment to superimpose any 3D content into any particular seen. However, implementing this technology has proved to be quite difficult because the recognition algorithm operating in the augmented reality application needs to identify some key features that may already exist in your camera frames. Mostly, this markerless augmented reality technology is used in 3D maps and navigation systems.
Project-Based Augmented Reality
Technology overlays the computer-generated graphics. Yes, you can easily take a view over the 3D projections just after pointing the frame of the camera onto the real object.
What Are The Major Benefits Of Augmented Reality In The Retail Industry
It Helps In Improving The Buyers Experience
The augmented reality technology grants buyers who always love to have the opportunity of reviewing the products in real-time, just like they are overlooking it in the physical store. This feature provides the users a genuine feel about the product as compared to the old technique of going through the product online.
Nowadays, before making a final deal, buyers love to search for different options and choices. With the help of augmented reality technology, it has become easier for the purchase to experience the real view of the product just from their office or home. They do not need to visit the physical store for the same.
Improved Shopping Support To The Purchases
If there is no shopping support in E-Commerce, then it becomes quite difficult to sell the product to a potential customer. Here, in such a situation, the augmented reality plays an important role as it bridges the gap between the social support experiences.
What Are The Major Disadvantages Of Augmented Reality?
This technology is highly based upon open-source architecture. And it is quite obvious that the open-source architecture is more vulnerable to potential threats and cyber-attacks as well. Hence, the breaching privacy concerns are actually there up to an extent.
The Implementation Cost On The Higher End
The cost that is involved in the development of the augmented reality-based application is on the higher end. The major reason is, it involves beta testing of the AR-based applications. It is important for developers to ensure that the coding required for a single integration does not affect the integration of other parts of the hardware. And it is actually an expensive process to complete.
E-Commerce platforms that support augmented reality
There are some major platforms that support augmented reality, including Shopify, Magento 2, and others.
Shopify is one of the fully-fledged E-Commerce platforms that provide you the best-augmented reality experience. However, this feature has been added to iOS users only. The platform has recently launched its applications 3D warehouse that permits the augmented reality experiences by enabling the 3D models uploading and linking them to the products that are actually available at the platform.
Woocommerce is the next E-Commerce platform that has added the augmented reality concept to its store. In the year 2018, the Kijo developers launched the plugin named Woocommerce AR quick look plugin. In order to take a complete view of the effects of the plugin, it is necessary to use the Safari browser on the iOS 12 based device. It will help you in bringing the real images to life.
Magento is also a popular eCommerce store that has integrated the augmented reality concept. The Magento 2 mobile app builder application is one of the popular features of the Magento store that not only converts your Magento to store into the mobile application but also helps in facilitating the augmented reality. Alternatively, by considering some of the valuable tips you can also take the help of expert Magento developers.
Apart from the above-given E-Commerce stores, there are some other third-party applications also that support all the E-Commerce stores like Shopify, big commerce, woo-commerce, and Magento 2.
What Is The Major Feature Of Augmented Reality?
In the latest trends of e-commerce, augmented reality is slowly and steadily taking its place. As per the details given in the Statista report, in the year 2025, the air market will increase by approx. Thirty-four times as compared to the 5.91 billion market size. The augmented reality technology is not at all bounded with E-Commerce, but it is gaining popularity in almost all the fields. Yes, it has been used in almost all industries, including real estate, healthcare, and others.
It is actually a wakeup call for all the major retailers available globally to adapt to this emerging technology. This technology will definitely impact the buying decision of the consumers. Being an e-commerce website owner, if you understand the intention of your buyers then, it will become easier for you to satisfy them and being on top in the competitive market.