21 Jul Virtual Reality in Retail
While retail businesses are expanding by going online, omnichannel enterprises are struggling with ways to retain their customers in the real world. But with the people looking for new experiences, there is a beacon of hope for the businesses to increase the foot-count by adding to customer experience using Virtual Reality (VR).
Here is everything that one needs to be aware of while venturing in the world of retail with VR as it’s future:
- The technology is in its initial stages
While VR has been around for quite some time now, it’s still a work in progress. Although the audiences are aware of this newest upgrade, the VR technology is yet to enter the daily lives of people.
Even though the giant players in the field like Oculus, Samsung and HTC are struggling to widen the customer base, the technology is trending among the masses. VR headsets are in demand the most, while virtual reality and augmented reality (AR) is leaving a lasting mark in gaming, movie theatres and education industries. But brands like Alibaba & North Face are moving forward with an aim to go beyond and step-up their game by creating virtual stores for customers to shop for products.
- Shopping without Malls
In Australia, the online stronghold company eBay has partnered up with Myer stores to present the idea of Shopping without malls. The goal is to use 3D VR headers, like Google Cardboard, for instance, and create a personalised store for the customers based on their likes. Using the concept of ‘Sight Search’, the customers will experience a faster interface as they go to the product they like by just staring at it. This technology still needs upgrades, since to purchase the selected products, they have to go online on eBay’s website, and the same can’t be achieved yet on the headset itself.
- Test Drives to drive people in
Automobile company Volvo has used VR as an excellent marketing tool to attract customers. The Volvo Reality App takes the customers on a virtual test drive that takes them through breathtaking sceneries. This leverages customer for an out-of-the-box of experience and adds to their satisfactory customer services. Considering its example, other companies like Jaguar, Ford and Lexus have also dwelled into this marketing pool.
- Virtual Supermarkets
Voice recognition and artificial intelligence along with realistic graphics, are some of the additional tools that Italian startup inVRsion’s venture ShelfZone has brought forward. This newest model of store simulators aim to represent large scale retailers and please the consumers by offering personalised experiences based on the data collected. The only question the pops-up is how will the purchase of products take place on a headset.
This latest technology of VR promises to remove the constraints of time and space, which in turn will save a massive amount of investments. Although the quality is scarce at the moment, businesses can foray into developing it. To sum it up, retailers may introduce virtual tours, customizable product experiences with the use of AI and interactive experiences in the universe of VR.