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What Is Retail AR?

Retail AR refers to the use of augmented reality (AR) and even virtual reality (VR) to improve retail sales. With this technology, customers can do things like try on clothes without undressing or visit stores while in quarantine. Aside from the attraction of trying the newest technology, AR and VR can meet customers wherever they are.

Details

Why Is It Important to Have Retail AR?

Augmented reality in retail can do many things for both the business and the customer. The business, for example, can cut the time and expense spent on rearranging stores or creating models and showrooms. Meanwhile, customers can enjoy highly personalized service when they try on as many products as they like in AR or virtually and safely drive a new car around town.

Additionally, retail AR can optimize promotional campaigns and remarketing campaigns by integrating directly with software that analyzes which customers spent how much time looking at what images of products.

Finally, one of the main attractions of augmented reality in retail is the draw of something new itself.

What Internal Data Should I Have for a Good Retail AR Program?

A retailer’s AR or VR system must fully integrate with inventory and promotional campaign data. If the program offers a virtual shop that mirrors the physical shop, then the mapping must be exact.

What External Data Is Essential for a Good Program?

Competitor analysis and market trends will provide essential knowledge for your AR program, no matter the type or scope.

What External Data May Prove Useful for a Good Program?

Additional external data that improves a retail AR or retail VR program includes technological updates in the field. Customers are interested in the latest technology to improve their retail experience; companies ought to provide the latest tech they can.

What Are the Main Challenges of this Use Case?

Further to the last point, most companies find it very difficult to maintain the technological edge in this field, especially when they rely on sales profits to provide access to the technology. Additionally, setting up a retail AR or VR program is time-consuming and takes a lot of technological understanding. If an existing business team can’t maintain that, then it may have to outsource.

Interesting Case Studies and Blogs to Look Into

Retail VR: Virtual and augmented reality to meet customer experience requirements
Forbes: The Four Definitive Use Cases For AR And VR In Retail

Tangible Examples of Impact

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, retailers have been increasingly shifting their attention to AR in an attempt to offset losses due to forced store closures. However, it also appears that AR (through virtual try-ons) has helped to improve return rates for online purchases. One virtual fitting room app has indicated that return rates for partnered retailers dropped from 38 percent to about two percent (whereas overall return rates for clothing and shoes bought online are at about 40 percent).

The National Law Review: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Who’s the Fairest of Them All? AR Retailing in the 21st Century

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