Would you like to virtually try on clothes before you buy them? How about taking a virtual tour of a store to browse its wares without fighting the crowds? Well, virtual shopping could be coming to you sooner than you think…
Like many people, I’ve embraced online shopping for certain items – after all, it’s great to avoid the busy crowds if you can.
But now two new ‘virtual’ and ‘augmented’ kids have joined the retail scene and my thoughts on whether either of these experiences will take off have brought me back to the initial thoughts I had when online shopping first launched.
I remember thinking to myself at the time: ‘It’ll never catch on – you can’t check the quality of anything, returning items would be a pain and people will surely miss the experience of shopping itself.’ Well, I was wrong wasn’t I?
So, will the rise of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) shopping enjoy the same success?
Some retailers certainly seem to think so. In fact, the likes of Gap, Amazon, Ikea, Topshop and Converse are all continuing to invest in AR and VR shopping experiences.
The idea is that shoppers can ‘try out’ clothes from the comfort of their own home, visualise how a sofa would fit in their living room, or even take a virtual tour of a department store to browse and purchase the latest products.
But it doesn’t stop there. If WorldPay’s proof of concept takes off, we’ll also be able to pay virtually.
That’s right: in a few years from now, we may be paying at virtual card readers in our homes, tapping for lower price items and entering our Pins in a virtual room for higher price tag purchases.
Do you think VR and AR shopping will take off? Should a new set of shopping rights apply if they do?