By Matt Wisdom
You’ve heard it before: 3D technology has the potential to completely remake the shopping experience. Yet at this point, most people likely don’t even realize they have a 3D-ready tool right in their pocket.
But all that is changing. Whether in stores or online, 3D and its myriad capabilities — including augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) — are the next big thing. We know consumers are moving online: more than 8,200 stores are expected to close in 2019, and tech-friendly Millennials and Generation Z will soon comprise the largest consumer group. Yet they also expect to return more than 75% of the goods they buy online. And so the race to sell products in a more enticing way — not to mention more useful for the shopper — has led many retailers to 3D.
Able to depict anything from simple product spinners to immersive AR and VR experiences, 3D can either replace or enhance the brick-and-mortar experience, offering the realism required to hook people on any device. From Rebecca Minkoff’s digital dressing rooms, which reportedly tripled sales, to popular apps that let you “try before you buy” from the likes of IKEA or Warby Parker, experiential retail is on the rise. With 3D product technology, companies across industries have seen increases in profitability and conversion rates of 20 to 40% And as 5G mobile technology is deployed around the world, the use of AR, VR, and 3D will only continue to grow.
Whether brands are using 3D models for static assets like IKEA’s almost entirely CG catalog, or award-winning interactive ad campaigns, 3D can save time and money. And while the idea of getting into 3D may seem overwhelming at first, most brands start to warm to the possibilities once they realize they’ll never have to do an expensive photo shoot (or reshoots!) again.