By using AR (Augmented Reality) to market their product more effectively, IKEA has proven that the uses of this powerful technology go way beyond fun and games. It can literally create livable experiences and help customers solve practical problems. But we’re overtaking ourselves, let’s start with the basics.
What is AR and how can it be useful in marketing?
Augmented Reality (AR) is the technology that creates an interactive experience of a specific aspect of the real environment so that consumers can get a feel for how each scenario will play out in real environments. AR-enhanced multiple sensory modalities such as visual, auditory, haptic, olfactory, etc. to make the experience as “real” as possible.
With the help of AR, marketers can increase the experience of their prospects and existing customers in the following ways:
- It helps customers try a product before buying it. This not only helps to increase sales, but also ensures that customers have no doubts about a product.
- By scanning a specific product or item, customers can get an AR experience tailored to their needs based on the product they have chosen. It gives them additional information and even offers an additional brand-centric experience.
- Integrating AR into the marketing strategy automatically creates a buzz about the brand as the technology goes beyond the traditional tools used by marketers – it offers an experience that is as close to real as possible.
So what is IKEA Place?
Although this app was launched by the Swedish retail giant in 2017, it is still considered noteworthy as they were the first to bring the augmented reality experience to furniture buying.
The IKEA Place app created with Apple’s ARKit is a godsend for anyone who can understand how confusing buying furniture can really be. One of the biggest challenges for people looking to buy furniture is determining if a particular piece will fit in the room and what it will look like.
To make the whole concept of buying furniture more fun than exhausting, the company launched this app. All customers have to do is point, click, select, and that’s it! You can then see exactly how a particular armchair, side table or sofa set will look like in your home.
This technology, which was touted as the “future of retail” at the time of its introduction, has clearly become indispensable and has revolutionized the entire buying process with its introduction. What makes this app so efficient isn’t just because of its fun and cool atmosphere, but also the fact that it’s easy to use, fascinating, and clean.
How does IKEA Place improve the user experience?
As explained earlier, they can see what it will look like in this area by simply pointing their phones at the area where a specific item or product is going to go and selecting an item from the IKEA catalog. It’s that simple.
When choosing products, use the catalog (broken down by category) that the company offers and it is even easier to access some others that they highlight. Users can easily save products, take pictures and even share them with others.
Source: Tech Crunch
The entire furnishing and navigation system is designed in such a way that it replaces all the stress that often comes with choosing furniture with fun. The company has taken an important step towards futuristic trends that create not only an immersive but also a dynamic user experience as it adapts to the needs of each user.
“Try before buy” became a reality with the introduction of this app, and users can test the functionality of each product without leaving their home. Since it has now made shopping so much easier for customers, it has of course also led to an increase in sales.
Simple navigation system
What unites the entire experience of using the Place app is the simple navigation system. Know the whole process, from viewing furniture options to taking pictures to going through the entire list of options, is easier than uploading a picture to Instagram? Which, by the way, is also possible with the app.
They also added a chatbot to the app that users can use to navigate and make the most of this experience. It lets users know where to aim and even gently corrects them if it’s not done right.
The bot adds itself like a guide and makes the user experience a lot easier. They know the bot will help them correct it, even if they somehow end up making a mistake. It keeps popping up with suggestions and questions to help them make the best decision for them.
Flawless social media integration
Another great feature of this app is that it allows users to easily share pictures on their social media profiles and this only adds to the fun factor as they can easily get the opinions and thoughts of their friends and family.
The large and high quality images provided in the app make it easy for them to make decisions as they can quickly browse and find what they are looking for. With just a few simple swipes, they can also easily share the pictures with loved ones.
With sophisticated technology, the IKEA Place app has simplified the buying process for users so that they don’t have to leave their home to buy furniture. The design of the ecommerce app is designed to take care of every step of the user’s journey and make sure they don’t leave the app without buying something.
Augmented Reality made this possible and this is just one of the endless ways it can be applied to marketing and enriched the user experience.
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