Interview • 21.11.2019

Enhanced, interactive, virtual – It’s all about the experience!

AR and VR can boost online and offline retail

Man in suit smiles frontally into camera
Source: commercetools

New technologies permeate all aspects of the retail business, whether it’s self-checkouts, AI or robotics. Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR and AR) are yet other components in this setting. 

In this interview with iXtenso, Kelly Goetsch, Chief Product Officer at commercetools GmbH talks about how these technologies can unlock online and offline possibilities, explains why they are important when it comes to the purchase decision and reveals the role they might play in the future.

Mr. Goetsch, what trends do you see in consumer buying behavior?

Kelly Goetsch: Whether you buy clothing, luxury items or technology – it’s obvious that the lines between online and offline retail continue to blur - and customers like this trend.

Virtual and augmented reality have become increasingly important in this context. 

AR and VR elevate the customer shopping experience to a whole new level. Retailers can leverage immersive technologies to customize any space to fit customer wants and needs. This enables each customer to have a personalized shopping experience based on his or her individual preferences. Customers are thus more likely to stay longer at the store, buy something and return to it again.

Hands holding a tablet with 3D designs
Source: PantherMedia / ekkasit919

Let's say a retailer wants to use these technologies. What are some real-world applications?

There are many ways to use AR and VR in retail settings. Even small retail spaces can be transformed into a megastore with the help of AR and VR solutions, turning them into an experience for the customer.

AR devices can give customers relevant and personalized content when they view products. This might include overlaid customer or expert reviews, additional product information or allergy warnings. What’s more, AR can incorporate personal information such as shoe size to directly determine product availability.

“Virtual stores” use VR for example. The technology allows customers to visit a virtual store anytime, anywhere, where a projection of an AI-based or humanoid assistant offers support. This virtual assistant gives personalized recommendations and presents products in real-time.

Speaking of purchase decision: Why is it important to create a positive experience that prompts customers to buy products?

Adding inspiration and information can have a positive impact on the purchase decision. Retailers often wrongly assume that customers already know what they are going to buy when they enter a store or visit a website. In reality, the experience at the store plays a crucial role in the decision. 

What potential do you see in AR and VR?

I see huge potential because we have not fully tapped into it yet. The fact that large tech giants like Google and Facebook invest in this technology proves that AR and VR are becoming increasingly important. It's still hard to say where all this is going to take us - but there are endless possibilities and the sooner retailers realize it, the sooner they can turn it to their advantage.

Interview: Katja Laska

related articles:

popular articles:

Thumbnail-Photo: Nominate your company for the E-commerce Germany Awards 2020!...
21.11.2019   #online trading #e-commerce

Nominate your company for the E-commerce Germany Awards 2020!

Award ceremony as part of E-Commerce Berlin Expo

The E-commerce Germany Awards are officially accepting submissions as of the 4th  November, 2019. Companies within the e-commerce sector are able to apply to one of the ten categories. The annual awards are given out for the third time in ...

Thumbnail-Photo: POS machine market growth
27.08.2019   #epos systems #pos systems

POS machine market growth

Driver: Adoption of mobile devices for POS transaction

The number of POS machines has increased in the past four years following the introduction of chip-embedded payment cards & Personal Identification Number (PIN). Moreover, growth in the number of departmental and retail stores, which is fueling ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Spar: opening in Copenhagen
30.10.2019   #electronic shelf labels (ESL) #price labelling

Spar: opening in Copenhagen

International Flagship-Store opens for business in Sydhavn, in the South of Copenhagen

On August 22nd, the grocery chain Spar opened its doors to a brand new store with international concepts in the South of Copenhagen area, Sydhavn. The new store offers a modern shopping experience where it should be easy, convenient and enjoyable to ...

Thumbnail-Photo: drs//POS – The POS system for many check-out situations...
13.09.2019   #pos systems #cashpoints

drs//POS – The POS system for many check-out situations

With the POS system developed by Superdata you are put in the picture

The POS acts as an ear in the store. It affects how timely, and with what information, decision makers at the head office are in a position to assess developments in the store and are able to respond appropriately to the situation.With our POS ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Irma: flagship store in Copenhagen
30.10.2019   #electronic shelf labels (ESL) #price labelling

Irma: flagship store in Copenhagen

Denmark's oldest grocery chain opens a new store

At the same time Irma, a Danish grocery chain, could celebrate its 133rd birthday, the chain also opened a new flagship store at Østerport station in Copenhagen. Besides showing renewal and being able to ensure the customers updated prices ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Mobile payments at the supermarket checkout
05.08.2019   #mobile payment #smartphone

Mobile payments at the supermarket checkout

An early adopter’s experience of mobile payments

Or: "What’s that you’re doing with your watch?“I still remember the first time I used mobile payment technology and paid for items with my smartphone at a supermarket checkout: It was October 17, 2018, exactly seven days after ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Pay cash? Via code!
26.08.2019   #mobile payment #app

Pay cash? Via code!

Shop online, pay the bill offline

Barzahlen.de relies on good old cash. The concept of the Berlin start-up: shop online, pay in cash at the store. Swimming against the trend of fast online shopping and mobile payment is paying off, says Weina Wang, Head of Retail. In an interview, ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Making Deeper Connections at ISE 2020
21.11.2019   #digital signage #video

Making Deeper Connections at ISE 2020

Visitor registration opens; exciting new features; most conferences ever; opening address confirmed

Visitor registration opens today for ISE 2020, which is set to be the most compelling Integrated Systems Europe show ever. Taking place at the RAI Amsterdam on 11-14 February 2020, ISE is the world’s leading event for the professional systems ...

Thumbnail-Photo: POS in the cloud: the networked checkout
13.09.2019   #epos software #digitization

POS in the cloud: the networked checkout

On the possibilities for a cloud-based point-of-sale-system

Everyone is talking about smart industry-specific cloud solutions. The cloud also offers the retail sector fresh possibilities for its day-to-day operations. So, it's no surprise that more and more companies are installing point-of-sale software ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Retail analytics: Breaking down data silos and improving operational...
29.07.2019   #data management #data analysis

Retail analytics: Breaking down data silos and improving operational efficiency

How comprehensive data usage led to higher revenue at Heine

“As a business with heritage in mail order, we used to have access to detailed reports about product performance in our catalogues. Once our digital presence grew, we had very limited information available that combined the KPIs for both our ...

Supplier

Permaplay Media Solutions GmbH
Permaplay Media Solutions GmbH
Aschmattstr. 8
76532 Baden-Baden
Superdata GmbH
Superdata GmbH
Ruhrstr. 90
22761 Hamburg
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Landgraben 75
24232 Schönkirchen
APG Cash Drawer
APG Cash Drawer
4 The Drove
BN9 0LA Newhaven
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
iXtenso - Magazin für den Einzelhandel
Celsiusstraße 43
53125 Bonn