Staying on a comfortable couch, enjoying your own music, stopping to get coffee whenever you want, and doing this all while shopping is a nice prospect, and one of the many benefits of online shopping. Imagine if you were able to try on items from home too! Read on to find out how augmented reality technology has improved retail, and how Illumix can help you use it to promote your brand, increase product engagement, and boost buyer confidence!
Bringing Shopping Home
Let’s face it, a lot of people do not like to leave the house. Whether you can relate to that or not, you have certainly felt the fatigue of in-store shopping. There’s the travel time between locations and endless browsing looking for the right item. In a digital marketplace, you can quickly narrow down search results and browse through exact matches that fit your criteria, all without having to sit in traffic.
However, there is always the fear of an online purchase not being quite right. The hassle of dealing with returns is enough to persuade many customers to turn around and leave their items languishing in their digital shopping cart. So how do you get a visitor to click the buy button? You let them try the object on using augmented reality.
Augmented reality has already seen widespread use in the eyeglass industry, saving customers the pain of buying a frame online that does not suit their face. Clothing, furniture, makeup, and more all take advantage of AR try-ons. You’re here to read about rings, so let’s get to it.
How Can You Improve the Ring Shopping Experience?
The wedding industry took a major hit during the COVID-19 pandemic. Weddings were canceled, stores and venues closed down, and supply chain issues made raw materials unavailable for products. In fact, this problem continues for many still today. While the situation has normalized, companies must adapt to emerging trends brought on by the pandemic.
Jewelry Industry Statistics
There are a couple of facts you should know:
- The world’s 10 largest jewelers account for 12% of the market. That means small businesses have a huge space open for them.
- Custom jewelry sales increased 38% from 2019 to 2020. You can’t see a custom piece in person, but you can use augmented reality to try it on right away.
- Online transactions account for 5-10% of all jewelry sales.
- Online transactions continue to increase by an average of 3.9% yearly.
If you sell rings, you should be online. You already know that, because e-commerce has been a major piece of retail for years now. So how do you increase your online presence?
Augmented Reality for Your Storefront
That is where virtual ring try-ons fit in. As we know, shoppers are moving online, and the trend will only continue. Consumers are more likely to shop across a wider range of retailers if they can do it all online.
The retailers who offer the easiest process will stand out above their competitors, and the closest a customer can get to going into a store and trying on a ring themselves is to use augmented reality to place it on their finger.
Even for brick-and-mortar retailers with a digital storefront, a virtual try-on is still beneficial. You might think you do not need it, as the customer will browse the selection and then come into the store to try the ring on, but this simply is not true.
You are neglecting major markets: the consumers who prefer to shop online, those who suffer from anxiety in social situations or are uncomfortable in a shop that requires constant assistance from a sales associate, and those who prefer to maintain social distancing or who avoid germs, COVID or otherwise.
People buy rings all the time, and they are not strictly reserved for upcoming nuptials. What about those engagements? Traditionally, the person proposing buys the ring; maintaining the surprise is an essential part of the process, or at least it used to be. Both parties now like to be involved in the purchase, for, after all, a ring is meant to last forever.
Getting a book for a gift is nice, but sometimes you just want the gift card so you can buy one you’ve had your eye on. The same is true for a ring. Don’t discount the appeal of a virtual try-on just because you sell mostly engagement rings.
For many people, the ease of using augmented reality to try a ring on, combined with the convenience of shopping from home, makes for a far superior experience to that of physically shopping. It is a huge segment of the market you do not want to miss out on. The next section will tell you how to get started with this technology.
Making Augmented Reality Easy
It can be hard to visualize augmented reality, but it gets easier when you have a phone. Okay, bad joke, but really, you might think AR is too difficult to incorporate or that it’s vastly unaffordable, but Illumix provides businesses with the means to easily integrate augmented reality into their platform with a few key tenets:
- Accessibility: Try-on features can be launched directly from a browser without the need to launch additional applications or websites.
- Exact: Models are precise and true to life.
- Intuitive: No additional setup is required on the part of the user, and it’s simple to use.
- Immediate: Quick loading try-on in real-time.
You can find new audiences with an expanded augmented reality program, grow your user engagement with your website, and, lastly, the thing that all businesses want, increase your conversion rate and decrease your returns. You want to deal with as few returns as possible, right? That’s a rhetorical question; no one likes returns.
Illumix is not just about ring try-ons, either. Businesses can incorporate its sophisticated AR tech to easily add virtual versions of other products as well. When augmented reality is easy for you to integrate and use, then it is easy for your customers as well.
Exploring Augmented Reality
At its core, Illumix is all about making augmented reality accessible to everyone and seamlessly combining the real and the digital. You might have heard about the metaverse, the grand idea of a future where we are all connected in a digital space. People have different ideas about how exactly this will be implemented, but Illumix does not want to remove the human element.
Seeking to better the world by seamlessly incorporating digital elements, Illumix wants to bridge the real world and the digital with technology that enhances the user’s experience. The end goal is not to have us strapped into virtual reality machines, but to take what we already have and think of the advancements that augmented reality can provide. Getting that technology into as many hands as possible is part of that goal.
We have seen the improvements AR already provides e-Commerce businesses, and that other brands have enjoyed, such as:
- A 32% increase in shopping cart value.
- 20% increased cart checkout.
- An astounding 82% increase in brand, social, and website engagement!
Augmented reality continues to expand, and putting yourself at the forefront by introducing it now will put you ahead of the trend. Better yet, AR can be used by other business types. Do not be afraid to explore the practical applications up ahead.
Augmented Reality in Other Markets
Augmented reality has a multitude of uses beyond retail. Illumix already has its technology used in Disney theme parks to bring the world of Disney to life in ways previously impossible. Consumers can add digital characters of effects to their interactions with the park. You can easily incorporate this same technology.
Imagine a museum with digital recreations of the artists describing the history behind their paintings. Lost in an amusement park? Pull up your phone and tell a digital tour guide where you want to go, then follow them in real-time as they take you there. These are just examples of what could be done with augmented reality technology, but the truth is that the options are potentially limitless.
The core belief of making augmented reality accessible for all and easy to use is still Illumix’s goal when helping owners in the entertainment space. Bringing you a flexible platform with outstanding performance means users have a smooth experience with your augmented reality.
Now that you have read about the capabilities of augmented reality, you are ready to begin using it yourself to drive your e-Commerce business. You do not have to be in the jewelry business to enjoy the advantages and can even extend the benefits of augmented reality well beyond retail. Illumix can help you get started, so reach out and make your business stand out.
How Kirin Sinha Is Bringing Web3 To The Real World With Illumix | Forbes
Why You Should Try on Engagement Rings Before You Buy, According to Experts | The Knot
21 Dazzling Jewelry Industry Statistics  | Zippia
Wedding Ring Market Size, Share & Trends | Allied Market Research