Augmented Reality is Shaping the Future of Shopping

Apr 8, 2020

3 min read

Retailers are constantly looking for new ways to wow their customers by leveraging new and emerging technologies and Augmented Reality is definitely a great way to do so.


One of the most interesting solutions they’ve turned to recently is augmented reality. Stores from Macy’s to IKEA have made headline using AR and really pulled customers into stores.

“AR lets us redefine the experience for furniture retail once more, in our restless quest to create a better everyday life for everyone, everywhere,” said Inter IKEA Systems Leader Digital Transformation Michael Valdsgaard.

According to market researcher Gartner, “100 million consumers will shop in AR online and in-store”, while “46% of retailers plan to deploy AR or VR solutions” by 2020.

And it makes perfect sense in some ways.

Augmented and virtual reality are much more immersive than photos and should technically give us a more realistic idea of how a product looks. We’ve all been there: impulse ordering a T-shirt online, only for it to arrive in a slightly different colour and the wrong size. With augmented reality apps, this could become a thing of the past.

Yet, what are the implementations we are seeing at the moment?

The vast majority of people are familiar with augmented reality games like Pokemon GO, but fewer are paying attention to the multiple AR shopping apps that have been cropping up recently.





Converse shoes went a step further and personalized the entire concept of online shoe purchasing through their AR app.

From the comfort of their home, buyers can easily have a view of the brand’s inventory and also try it out. Shoppers simply point the smartphone down at their foot. The Shoe Sampler superimposes the selected footwear through the screen at the foot of the user. This shows how the shoe would look after the wearer tries it on.

In fact, in addition to this app offering, buyers can also save images of their virtual try-on and share them through the integrated social share feature.

People are naturally inclined to seek fashion advice, hence this serves for a great brand promotional technique as well.


Burberry Beauty Box



A good example of users benefiting from AR in the beauty niche is by using the Burberry Beauty Box. The nail bar feature allows customers to select their skin tone and apply the nail paint through Augmented Reality.

The finished appearance of how the paint would look in real can be viewed through the app.


Diamond Hedge



On average, shoppers spend around $6,000 on the purchase of a diamond engagement ring, according to

While purveyors of fine jewellery such as Blue Nile, Zales, James Allen, and Kay used photo-based Augmented Reality experience in early attempts to help shoppers visualize their options, Diamond Hedge took a slightly more ambitious approach.

The Diamond Hedge app for iOS and Android uses the phone camera to track the base of the finger and place a ring on it real time. So you’re looking at an AR ring on your real hand in the real world, rather than on a photo of your hand.



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