The apparel and footwear brands are transforming digitally to include various trending technologies like Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality. They are focusing more on creating better shopping experiences for consumers. Development has begun as we can see consumers are using special tools to virtually try-on clothes or attend extravagant events by putting on a VR headset.
The eCommerce industry is growing as well and the reason is the pandemic. According to Statista, Global eCommerce sales reached a value of $3.53 trillion. Furthermore, some experts predict that the pandemic will fasten the transition to online shopping by 5 years. But apparel & footwear industry will not be completely virtual as people also enjoy visiting physical stores and trying on real clothes.
AR and VR help in making shopping experiences more exciting and enjoyable. When the engagement rates increase, brand loyalty also increases and generates good sales and revenue. So, it’s better than the apparel and footwear brands integrate with these technologies to generate more sales.
Moving ahead we shall explore more about what these technologies mean to the apparel industry, their benefits, brands that use AR & VR, its future, and much more.
AR & VR in Apparel & Footwear Industry
This technology adds a digital layer to the physical layer to enhance the real-life environment in the industry. There are shopping applications that help customers know more about the products they wish to buy. Additionally, there are other applications that allow consumers to try clothes virtually and decide how it looks on them. AR is used to transform a user’s phone or tablet into a 3D mirror and check out the new looks or take a selfie. There are other applications that don’t need to be installed, instead, the user can open a URL place the camera on the object, and view the digital content on the phone.
Virtual reality adds an additional layer and also creates a parallel universe where the user can experience being at a different place or time. The virtual headsets are transforming the apparel business and commerce sectors as they provide the ability to take a virtual tour of the apparel store or attend a 3D event or be a part of the product presentation.
Benefits of AR & VR In Apparel & Footwear
AR tools attract the attention of consumers throughout the shopping process. In addition to virtual try-on, consumers can also spot the right garments, buy clothes, apply filters, chat with an AI bot, etc.
Boost Brand Awareness:
AR tools help users scan the product and find out the unique features & advantages of the product. Hence, allowing consumers to realize the importance of the brand and the product.
AR & VR tools enhance the shopping experience for consumers so that they can find the most relevant garments of their choice.
When customers are satisfied, it is obvious that they will come in search of the same quality. Moreover, they may also recommend the brand to real-world and social media.
Reduced Cost on Returns:
Retailers have introduced easy return policies to provide better customer satisfaction. These policies come with extra costs. But the AR tools help consumers evaluate the close-to-life image of the product and reduce the number of returns. Hence, the cost spent on deliveries is reduced. Another way is when brands conduct the runway show they tend to spend a lot. If the event is made virtual, then the costs will automatically reduce.
AR helps identify the product features and keeps the consumers engaged throughout their shopping. Hence, customers make more purchases with ease.
Fashion & Apparel Brands using AR & VR
This brand uses AR to enhance its marketing efforts. They launched an event at a hotel in New York. They transformed the hotel into a festive semi-digital shopping area. Those residing outside the city could download a special app or use the Snapchat lens to attend the event.
Dior created unique filters for Snapchat and Facebook for trying accessories like hats and sunglasses using AR.
They launched a feature for iOS users wherein the consumers can try their line of ACE sneakers in AR. Hence, bringing consumers closer to the brand.
They launched an AR shopping tool using Google Search Technology. This tool helps consumers integrate Burberry products into their actual environment.
This brand introduced 6 AR image filters to promote its streetwear collection. It helps Instagram users apply these filters to augment to music videos accompanying the campaign. The users can then share the campaign with friends and followers. Hence, promoting the brand.
Future of AR & VR In Apparel & Footwear Industry
AR &VR have a great potential to sustain in the industry. Some reports convey that the global AR market was $11.1 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach $60.6 billion by 2023. Similarly, the VR global market valued at $7.9 billion in 2018 may reach $34 billion by 2023. Top brands are integrating AR and VR to create new products and experiences. AR makeup and makeovers, VR catwalk shows, virtual fitting-rooms, augmented clothing, and other exciting novelties may take up the show in the coming days. AR and VR will meet the needs of retailers and buyers to make them a lot happier.
AR and VR benefit both apparel brands and retailers. They help in various ways, allowing consumers to try-on clothes, encouraging unique content for promotions, and simplifying shopping experiences for consumers. AR tools also help brands to boost customer experience and engagement. Hence, drive more sales. AR & VR technology truly enhances automation in apparel & footwear industry in a way that boosts customer loyalty and drives growth.