Raydiant’s Bold New App Brings Augmented Reality to the In-Store Experience

Augmented reality technology is transforming the way in-store customers shop, and Raydiant is excited to be a part of it. Our new partnership with augmented reality (AR) provider Poplar Studio brings AR to Raydiant customers, creating interactive and contact-free ways to engage with products.

The cutting-edge technology, now available as part of the Raydiant app library, uses AR technology activated by on-screen QR codes. Customers can use their smartphones to virtually “try on” everything from makeup and shoes, as well as visualize your products in their space. 

The Retail Power of Augmented Reality

More than 3.5 billion people are projected to become regular AR users by 2022. That’s not five years from now—that’s months away. And top retailers know this. From Apple to Lululemon, brands are already taking advantage of AR’s ability to grab and hold customer attention, both online and in their stores. And while brands have been leveraging the marketing power of AR for a few years now, 2020 saw a marked upturn for in-store retail. 

During the pandemic, in-store shoppers were reticent to try on clothes or makeup, or touch a ton of products as they shopped. AR created a way to do so safely—customers can simply scan a QR code on their phone and see the object appear in the room or on them. Now they don’t just see a picture of those new kicks—they see them on their feet! This is contactless service taken up a few notches.

AR technology has many benefits for the in-location retail space, and the statistics show it:

See More Sales with “Try Before You Buy” Technology 

An astounding 40% of clothes bought online are returned because of color/size/perception differences between the online and real-life products. This number goes down to 10% for brick-and-mortar stores, and while that’s a significantly lower number, it’s still a pain point for retailers. With Poplar Studio’s AR technology, retailers can lower that number even further by offering virtual “try on” options in their stores. How does it work?

Using the Poplar Studio app, you can easily add and remove products, managing them through the app’s custom content management system. Each unique product generates a QR code that you can then display on your in-store Raydiant screen or screens. With their smartphones, customers can then scan the QR code, opening an AR experience where they can see themselves trying on products by using their mobile camera. Glasses, hats, makeup, shoes—much like an Instagram or Snapchat filter, their mobile screens show them “wearing” the product as they smile, move, and pose. 

Other, non-wearable, products can also be virtually visualized with the AR app. Using the same scannable technology, customers can see products like purses or furniture in the space around them, where they can then interact with it and view it from different angles.

Retailers can also use cameras to turn their Raydiant screens into “try on” screens. A customer would simply scan the screen’s QR code and watch as the screen turns into a virtual “mirror” where they can see themselves wearing that new hat, those goggles, or that new shade of lipstick—all without touching a thing. 

Level Up Your Customer Experience with AR Treasure Hunts 

Increase customer engagement and gamify their shopping experience with a fun AR treasure hunt. Our Poplar Studio app lets retailers use on-screen QR codes to activate a “hunt,” which directs the customer around your store, where they can find and scan images, posters, and product tags to activate an AR experience, which they can then interact with by tapping on or exploring virtual objects. For example, it can turn the shopping experience into a game, where customers scan to get a clue that takes them to the next location in your store. Or it may open a content promo page where they can enter a contest to win prizes. 

There are so many ways to use AR to create a fun, interactive shopping adventure! And the good news for retailers? It increases foot traffic, improves the customer experience, and boosts new and repeat sales. Just ask WalmartAdidas, Lowe’s, and other big brands who use the tech in their stores with resounding success. 

Use AR Games to Keep Customers Entertained as They Wait 

Customers waiting in line or waiting for a spouse or friend as they shop. Bored kids making shopping difficult for their parents. The Poplar Studio app solves these problems, making shopping fun again, with AR mini games. Just as they sound, mini games are short games that customers can access, like other in-store AR, with a quick QR code scan. These games then open on their phone screens, where they can use face gestures, head movements, or screen taps to play. Not only does this give shoppers and their tag-alongs something to do during wait times (trying on clothes, standing in line, etc.), but it’s also great word-of-mouth advertising for your brand. People love to share fun experiences with their friends—both in real life and online. Brands including Nike, Tilly’s, and 7-Eleven use AR games in their stores to keep kids and adults occupied and boost in-store promotions. 

Draw More Foot Traffic with Memorable AR Experiences  

As our State of Consumer Behavior Report 2021 revealed, brick-and-mortar retailers must level up their in-store customer experience to attract hesitant shoppers back to their locations. AR technology attracts customers in two important ways: it gives them a unique, interactive way to engage with your brand and it makes that interaction contact-free and safe.

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