Augmented Reality: The New Way Of Shopping
Augmented reality is a technology that can be used in different fields: from gaming to medicine, from industry to interior design, from art to teaching, and through marketing, entertainment, and e-shopping services.
What Is Augmented Reality?
In 2020, due to the lockdown effect and the restrictive containment measures, which have radically changed consumers’ purchasing habits, the eCommerce sector experienced unprecedented growth and today is looking with increasing interest at the possibilities offered by augmented reality. What is augmented reality? Augmented reality or computer-mediated reality. In English, Augmented Reality (AR) is an immersive technology capable of merging real and virtual elements, improving the perception of the facts surrounding us.
AR optimizes the sensory experience by combining it with the digital one using Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Hi-Tech devices, allowing you to overcome the boundaries of the classic reality perceived with the five senses. In other words, Augmented Reality, thanks to new technologies, amplifies physical reality with the superimposition of digital content, which can be graphics, content, 3D animations, video, or audio, adding value to user interaction in the real world.
The elements that “increase” reality can be added through a mobile device (for example smartphone) with the use of a PC equipped with a webcam or other sensors or with vision devices (for instance, projection glasses on the retina), listening (earphones) and manipulation (gloves) that enrich the reality already commonly perceived with multimedia information. Do you want to grow your business and improve the results of your business? With Axapta payment systems, you can find the perfect solution for your point.
E-shopping And Augmented Reality Services: The Examples Asos And Sephora
To better understand the potential of augmented reality in the eCommerce sector, let’s take two practical examples and analyze the innovative App of Sephora, the French multinational chain of products for personal care and beauty, and the latest initiative of Asos, the giant of online clothing sales, which during the pandemic accelerated the expansion of the AR program called “See My Fit.”
The application created includes the “Virtual Artist,” which uses facial recognition technology to offer customers the ability to test over 20,000 products sold by the brand, including lipsticks, eye shadows, concealers, highlighters, and other cosmetics. How? Just use the front camera of your smartphone to scan your face and find the right color tone based on your skin tone. On the other hand, Asos uses six digitally created avatars that can dress up to 500 pieces of clothing per week, showing, thanks to an algorithm, the same clothes worn by models with different builds and sizes to make the shopping experience more inclusive.
ThinkMobiles, a company that deals with IT and software reviews, emphasizes that augmented reality applied to eCommerce, thanks to the evolution of mobile devices, is destined to revolutionize how we shop on the web, creating a connection between the natural world and the digital one. 63% of customers are confident that augmented reality can improve the shopping experience, and 35% say they would probably do more online shopping if there were a chance to try things out before buying them virtually. At the same time, 22% would be less likely to visit traditional retail stores if AR were available in online stores.
AR And VR: What’s The Difference?
When it comes to augmented reality, we must be careful not to confuse it with virtual reality, in English Virtual Reality (VR). AR and VR are often mistakenly interchanged, but they are two different technologies. Here’s what the difference is:
- In real-time, augmented reality adds digital information to improve the perception of the surrounding environment. There is nothing invented. Simply technology helps to enrich people’s experience. This means that augmented reality cannot ignore the surrounding environment. AR is often defined as mixed reality, or “mixed reality” since it arises from a mix between the natural world and the virtual world;
- Virtual reality uses technological tools to create virtual environments, which have no connection with the surrounding fact, in which the user can interact thanks to the combination of hardware and software devices that offer an immersive experience. Unlike AR, therefore, VR simulates reality in a wholly digital environment.
The Benefits Of Augmented Reality For Brands And Customers
Augmented reality is an effective means of promotion for all those companies that want to grow their brand online and ensures benefits for both brands and customers:
The Advantages For Brands Using Augmented Reality
- Retain customers and acquire new ones;
- Greater targeting of the reference audience;
- Greater involvement of the public through the use of AR combined with traditional communication tools (for example, Social networks);
- Increase engagement and conversion rate by turning site visitors into buyers;
- Optimize User and Customer Experience, guaranteeing an experience similar to the in-store one;
- It allows you to stand out from your competitors and emerge on the market;
- It offers the possibility of building an omnichannel experience that mixes the digital world with the physical one.
Advantages For The Customer Using AR
- View a large number of products in a short time;
- Test products from home without having to go to the store;
- Live a more engaging shopping experience than the online one of traditional eCommerce;
- The margin of error in the choice of the product is lower, and this means less frequent returns;
- Ability to preview products not yet on sale or to purchase products not available in local stores;
- AR applications are within everyone’s reach: a smartphone is enough to experience a new way of shopping;
By 2023 there will be approximately 2.4 billion mobile augmented reality users worldwide, an increase of 2.2 billion compared to the 200 million seen in 2015. By the end of 2021, there will be approximately 1.96 billion mobile AR users worldwide.
Axapta Store Solutions For The E-Commerce Of The Future
In addition to developing modern and cutting-edge payment solutions, it has decided to invest in the “store of the future” to improve the shopping experience and the Customer Experience of users. The goal is to simplify the digitization process of small and medium-sized enterprises through tools tailored to each type of business. Here are the eight solutions that will change the way you shop and make your store and your eCommerce faster and more intuitive:
The “magic mirror” is the innovative device inside which the entire clothing store catalog is inserted and stored. Thanks to the Magic Mirror, the customer will neither have to queue to enter the dressing room nor waste time to change: stand in front of the mirror to try on countless items and share photos for an opinion with friends and relatives. In addition, according to the article of clothing tested, the Magic Mirror offers other clothes and accessories that could complete the look initially. Finally, the customer can pay directly through the mirror using all digital payment methods to avoid wasting time.
Hidden payments, more commonly known as “invisible payments,” are the new frontier of online and in-store payments. Designed to improve the Customer Experience, they are automatic, intelligent, transparent, and fast: no more wallets, credit cards, banknotes, or coins, but space for digital wallets stored in smartphones, smartwatches, or tablets. Goodbye to PINs and security codes: Touch-ID and face scanners are enough to authenticate payments with one click.
Store Analytics allows you to monitor flows within the store and analyze data on the purchasing behavior of your customers. How? Thanks to small cameras installed inside and at the store entrance, the merchant can access data and helpful information to plan effective commercial strategies and maximize sales.
Axepta’s innovative solution is to send payment requests simply and securely via email, SMS, and Whatsapp or by generating a QR Code. With ClickPay, it is possible to customize payment requests by inserting logos, links to the site, and social profiles.
The omnichannel model is based on the simultaneous and interconnected use of different communication channels, both online and offline, to offer consumers an increasingly complete and personalized Customer Experience with fewer online and in-store barriers for an experience of seamless and uninterrupted purchasing.
Simple, safe, and convenient, Cash Protection is the Axepta service which, using a small intelligent safe that can be installed in any area of the store, allows you to safely deposit your receipts in the store and directly credit the money to your account. Current within the next business day. Furthermore, with the Axepta Byond portal dedicated to the merchant, it is possible to monitor real-time cash and card collections.
Hi-POS is a simple, versatile, flexible, and innovative terminal with an attractive design and many functions gathered in a single POS. The integrated QR Code / Barcode reader allows you to manage all the new payment methods such as Alipay and WeChat Pay.
Hi-POS DUO is an innovative and pocket-sized solution that allows you to accept in-store and mobile payments directly from your smartphone or tablet. How? Thanks to the Hi-POS DUO application, compatible with iOS and Android operating systems and with the card reader provided by Axapta.