It’s difficult to imagine that only a generation ago everything from apparel to kitchens and automobiles were bought almost exclusively from local retailers. Now, e-commerce and other fast-moving technological advances have completely upended brick-and-mortar retail .
One technology changing the way we shop is augmented reality. And it’s perfectly positioned to revolutionize retail.
On the cutting edge of AR for retail sits Luciano Del Priore, furniture designer and owner of Kreemar, an official reseller for SketchUp Italy. As an insider with experience on both sides of the industry, he sees the immediate benefits of AR for retail.
Custom Kitchens, Custom Experiences
Del Priore specializes in custom kitchens designed in SketchUp. While showrooms are still essential for customer experiences, he also sees an important space for technology—especially with AR going mainstream with apps like IKEA Place (a smartphone app that lets you virtually ‘place’ furnishings from their catalogue in a space).
Augmented reality raises sales percentages and helps sell everything in your entire project.Luciano Del Priore, owner & designer, Kreemar
In the case of kitchen design, an in-store experience doesn’t help customers visualize how the products will fit and look in their own homes. With AR customers can see exactly how a kitchen design looks in their home before buying it.
As a SketchUp designer, Del Priore uses the Kubity PRO plugin to crystallize and sync kitchen models to the Kubity Go app on his phone. Then, he shares them with clients. Since the Kubity Go app is free to download and use, it’s a perfect way for clients to experience their kitchen using AR right in their own homes. They can even snap a pic and send to get a friend’s opinion before making a purchase.
“Being able to send a 3D design via SMS, or email to a client is time-saving, very convenient and eco-friendly because you eliminate printing from the process.”
When clients show their project to family and friends, Del Priore says it also gives him word-of-mouth exposure—a priceless marketing tool for small businesses.
“Augmented reality raises sales percentages and helps sell everything in your entire project (sofas, curtains to lighting, etc). It’s a great tool for those who do not have the budget for large exhibition space, plus it’s a better way to explain the project to customers anywhere around the world,” says Del Priore
Real-time 1:1 scale immersive AR is a retail game-changer that takes design presentations to a new and more enriching level. Not only does AR allow customers to access a full inventory of designs, but also allows them to take the in-store experience home with them.