There I stood, confused and frustrated in the middle of the furniture store. Searching for an entertainment center that would not only fit in my new living room but match with maximum storage space. My journey as a buyer was almost complete, but I was stuck between two choices and there was no more selling the sales gentleman could do. It was all on me. I left the store, still entertainment center-less, with 4 photos of each piece on my phone. Next steps? I had to IMAGINE them in my living room. PICTURE them in my living room. I’ve never been good at that kind of thing. If only there was a way to make this decision easier!
While my customer experience in the store was not a concern, I didn’t complete my buyer’s journey for another week because I had to go home, compare photos, imagine the fit and ask for advice from friends who had visited my new space. As a millennial who has grown up with the technology boom, I expected that there would be an easier way to compare their fit or color match as I have seen many other times and ways before while purchasing items.
Shortly after all of this, I was intrigued to hear that Macy’s was rolling out an augmented reality (AR) experience in their mobile app that virtually placed the furniture being considered into the room of the customer! That’s what I am talking about! Additionally, I learned that Walmart was rolling out a virtual “3D virtual shopping tour” on their website. Other retail giants like Wayfair, Amazon, Ashley Furniture and IKEA too.
In a time where millennials are becoming homeowners and tenants, retailers need to maintain growth and shopping experiences that will cater to this generation. It could be safe to say that furniture will be one of those items that need to be seen before purchasing, but continuing to make the experience seamless and personalized is the way to close on millennial buyers. These AR and VR applications will eliminate the guesswork and expedite the buyer’s journey, putting the money and relationship in the retailer’s hand faster than ever.
OZ sees this gap and realizes the need to enhance the retail customers’ experiences. Retailers should look toward OZ’s established AR and VR experiences to bridge the gap between the shopping experience and millennial buyers. Immersive technology is no longer the future, major retailers are making it exciting news of the past. Are you keeping up with these innovative technology trends?