What do popular brand applications like FlightRadar24, Snapchat and Pokemon Go! have in common? They introduced the world to a targeted, clever use of Augmented Reality and proved it’s an effective way to engage their core audience.
So, now that augmented reality has been introduced to the masses, how are you embracing this technology to change how your customers shop online and in-store?
How Does Augmented Reality Work?
Augmented reality (AR) is what happens when you blend the physical world with the digital world. It’s real-time use of information in the form of text, graphics, audio that displays a layer of digitally-created content to live amidst the end-user’s real-world environment.
Currently, it’s mostly utilized via our phone cameras, and the displayed information is geared to the physical position of the user as well as the context of the task. Almost always, the goal is to help the user complete the task.
How Retailers are Creating an Effective Augmented Shopping Experience
With this phygital solution (blending physical with digital) for shopper marketing, many brands are using this technology to overlay digital branding content into their real-world retail environment so that they can deliver a more robust shopping experience with intuitive product information – more so than if consumers are just searching for something online.
Now that AR has positioned itself as a successful retail marketing and consumer promotions tool for enhancing the brand’s interaction with customers, let’s review some unique and effective ways that brands are leveraging this functionality:
ALL-IN ONE PLACE MARKETING:
Where traditional marketing efforts are scattered across multiple channels – print, media and in-store advertisements – AR creates a new all-in-one digital experience. Brands control the story, but consumers are the star of the show.
AR enables brands to build unique (and lucrative) consumer relationships that add tremendous value to the end user’s experience. Shopper engagement is the name of the game and with the use of both traditional and non-traditional interactions, AR can be the cornerstone for future retail marketing campaigns and bridge the gap between offline and online shopping.
Your customer doesn’t have to scroll through dozens of items in your catalog – wading through irrelevant information to find the shoes they want. Instead, they select the pair they want, change the size and then actually try them on without moving their feet. They adjust the color 3 times, but decide to stick with black. One click later, they’ve placed their order.
This also works with seeing how a new couch will look in your living room or what green paint will look like on your bedroom walls. AR provides a helpful 3D experience that allows customers to see products in-home before purchasing.
By enabling your consumers with state-of-the art augmented reality, you’re creating the perfect entry to expand your brand. Use the data and feedback acquired from your AR activations to iterate on the shopper experience. This will make sure your consumer feels heard along its journey and drive great engagement.
Besides color options and pricing, brands can implement social proof into each product by using AR to pop up customer reviews when a sign is scanned in-store. This helps consumers avoid finding a sales associate, cultivates trust and creates the next-level online shopping experience your customers will love.
The Business impact of AR
HubSpot, the enterprise marketing platform provider, explains it simply: “Brands that take advantage of augmented reality will be the brands that satisfy more customers long-term.”
Integrating augmented reality into your retail marketing campaigns has proven to cultivate a positive impact on brand conversion rates as the customer experience has become more interactive. In the same way, thanks to the ability to “try on” products before they buy, return orders are becoming a thing of the past.
As a retailer, the cost savings that result from having a better grip on your inventory and sales will help you efficiently optimize your warehouse spacing as well.