Augmented Reality or AR is a technology that places virtual objects that do not actually exist in our real world. To see these objects, you need a smartphone. This is how virtual content and the physical world interact in real-time.
Augmented reality is used:
AR became widely available to consumers in 2016 with the release of the Pokemon Go mobile app, a game developed using augmented reality. With the help of a camera and GPS, players caught virtual Pokemon – AR technology added them to city streets. People hunted for Pokemon everywhere: on the streets, in parks, coffee shops. Since then augmented reality app development is growing and developing very quickly. These technologies have been applied in almost all spheres of life.
How is this technology useful for business?
Studies in the US have shown that only 1% of retail companies use augmented reality technologies. At the same time, 61% of surveyed consumers would prefer to buy products from companies that use AR (according to research by Threekit Inc.).
Customers are increasingly using their phones for online shopping: through the screen, they interact with brands and make purchase decisions. They want to be sure that the product will suit them.
Augmented reality shows the product in advance – the client sees its properties and possible use cases. This eliminates doubts about the purchase.
Helps the customer to get to know the product
AR helps to understand the dimensions of a product, compare its size with similar ones, and see the different colors of a product. There are fewer dissatisfied customers, as well as returns.
For example, IKEA has released the IKEA Place mobile app, which uses augmented reality technology. The application shows how furniture from the catalog looks in an office or apartment.
The customer tries the product before buying
Such a test helps to make a confident purchase decision and increases the level of customer loyalty. For example, on the website of L’Oréal Paris, you can try on a virtual makeover.
To do this, just select the desired product, click the “try online” button and turn on the camera or upload the finished photo. The client can try different shades of lipstick or eye shadow and decide which one they like best.
Creates a wow effect
People do not yet take augmented reality for granted, so they will share their impressions of interacting with it. Interesting advertising campaigns using AR technologies create a newsbreak and raise the status of the brand.
For example, Xbox launched an ad for the game Halo Infinite using augmented reality. A spaceship flew into the stadium, and a hologram with the name of the game appeared. All this happened online – the audience did not see the ship in real life, but it was displayed on the screens.
With the help of augmented reality, you can build routes around the city or inside any building. Arrows will appear on the screen, which will indicate the path to the desired point.
The application scans the space using the camera, and then compares it with a digital copy – there can be no mistake here.
The brand’s stores are large and customers are looking for the right department for a long time: virtual arrows on the smartphone screen are designed to indicate the path to the product. This application of AR technology shows concern for consumers and increases their loyalty.
What is the future of augmented reality?
People like to try new things and have unusual experiences. Augmented reality helps with this – it offers more than the usual service in the store.
For companies, this means that they will be able to interact with customers on a new level: offer more personalized products, increase the share of online sales, and reduce the number of returns and dissatisfied customers. AR technology opens up new opportunities for advertising.
If the AR experience is a one-time episode, then it’s likely to draw people’s attention to the technology rather than the product. For such advertising campaigns to be successful, businesses must properly integrate technology into the buyer’s journey. This will help people make purchasing decisions and increase brand loyalty.