With each passing day, augmented reality is changing the way people do business. In the months to come, it's easy to see that this technology will also have a major impact on the retail experience.
There is no slowing down the growth of augmented reality, which can be witnessed by the impact on the digital marketing space. While augmented reality campaigns have already made a dent in many industries, we're now beginning to see just what it can do to the retail experience.
With augmented and virtual reality revenue set to reach $162 billion by 2020, the time to take notice is now. Over the next three years, things will really begin to pick up.
Why is Augmented Reality Moving into the Retail Industry?
Marketing professionals will do whatever it takes to get their product and/or services in front of their target audience. They're a ruthless bunch. If it drives results, you can be rest assured they'll take full advantage. This is where augmented reality comes into play.
Consumers love anything that is new. Even if it doesn't stick around, they're attracted to anything they haven't experienced in the past. And that's exactly what you get with augmented reality.
Right now, consumers are more likely to soak in augmented reality campaigns because they've yet to experience these in large numbers. Of course, all of this will change over the next few years, which is why so many companies are fighting to be first to the punch.
An Improved Customer Experience
Let's face it: Some people need a push in the right direction. They need a reason to purchase a product. And that reason isn't the "same old, same old" experience.
Through the use of augmented reality technology, companies are able to immerse buyers in a truly unique experience.
It's a great way for companies to give consumers a closer look at a product or service, even if they are unable to make a purchase on the spot. This builds rapport and brand recognition, two things that can translate to sales down the line.
A New Approach to Interior Design
The online home furniture market is on the rise, with consumers spending more money than ever before to turn their home into their dream space.
This is a huge opportunity for augmented reality, as this technology can give homeowners a better idea of what a piece of furniture or décor would look like in their home.
With this, consumers no longer have to guess as to whether or not something will look good and/or fit. Instead, they can use augmented reality to overlay products, giving them a clear-cut idea of whether or not to make a purchase.
More and more companies are getting on board with this technology, with Wayfair and Ikea a couple prominent early adopters.
No More Dressing Room Stress
Shopping for clothes online is nothing new. There's something else that isn't new: the difficulties of buying something online without knowing how it will look on your body. Retailers are pumping a lot of money into apps that allow consumers to virtually try on many types of clothing (as well as accessories).
With augmented reality programs, you no longer have to guess if a pair of pants will look good on you. You no longer have to assume that those earrings and necklace will give you the look you're after. Augmented reality can help you answer all these burning questions.
Many of the biggest and most well known brands, including the likes of Neiman Marcus, are hoping to gain business through the use of augmented reality technology.
I'm very bullish on augmented reality--so much so that I've developed an augmented web and mobile application to help influencers and brands connect with their audience. It's called Blendar.io, and it allows brands and influencers to connect with their audiences using augmented reality. If you believe that augmented reality will have no impact on the retail experience, you may be surprised at what happens over the next few years.
Companies and consumers alike are falling in love with everything augmented reality can do for them. It's only a matter of time before this is no longer a trend, but instead the norm.