So far augmented reality (AR) has been used to increase the realism of video games or even for photographic effects in some popular social networks; but there is a field that we have set aside and which could be very helpful for promoting products and services Augmented reality opens up an endless number of opportunities in which we can interact with text and images, merging them with our environment; allowing to the shoppers see real-time information as they move around a store.
According to Blake Eisler, director of CPG retail client solutions at Oracle: “Stores are facing the same challenges that a decade ago print magazines began dealing with: The struggle between print and digital has begun causing disruptive changes to advertising, content access and, most importantly, the customer experience”.
In this age where everything changes quickly and the customers are showing more inclination towards the digital platform, it has become all-important for the stores to seize the mobile shift to keep their store on the top of the customer’s mind. Such is the case of the Forever21 clothing company that recently declared itself in bankruptcy since it could not compete with online stores
“In the age of social media, consumer expectations are soaring, and people want information and advice about the products they’re going to buy,” said Sima Nadler, IBM Research’s retail lead. “By closing the gap between the online and in-store shopping experience, marketers can appeal to the individual needs of consumers and keep them coming back.”
Mobile augmented reality can help pan store shelves with smartphones to receive personalized product tips, recommendations, and coupons blending digital data with real-world imagery.
The costumer can also create a profile of features that matter to them, such as allergies or preferences. Then, as the customer browse the aisles and point their phone’s video camera at merchandise, the app will recognize the products and overlay digital details on top of the images giving you the opportunity to to see info such as ingredients, price, reviews, and discounts that apply that day.
Recent research from the Interactive Advertising Bureau found that 73 percent of consumers say they have used their mobile phone while shopping. Other studies suggest shoppers who use apps in stores are significantly more likely to have made a purchase at one of a retailer’s channels compared to those who do not use apps in store.
Users can view, search and map products in retail stores. Users are able to locate products down to a particular section of each aisle.
According with Forrester: “The eCommerce shift is a significant, palpable movement in most economies, consumers are buying more online than they ever have before. More consumers are buying online. Fifty-eight percent of global online consumers made a purchase online in 2018.”
The augmented reality combined with a mobile app brings stores to the palm of the customers’ hands making shopping easier, convenient, relevant and also helping retailers better understand consumers, based on their likes and dislikes.