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BizReport : Advertising archives : June 19, 2019

Reports: Disconnect between brands, shoppers on AR/VR

While more and more consumers are looking to tech to make their shopping simpler, many aren't convinced that merchants and brands can deliver for them. That isn't stopping brands and marketers from investing and trying out AR/VR options for consumers, though. Those are two key findings from research reports out this month.

by Kristina Knight

First data out from Unity Technologies indicates that AR ad implementation remains a struggle for many brands. Nearly one-quarter of brands using AR cite technical challenges while just over one-third (39%) say cost is the main issue holding them back.

"Augmented reality is becoming ubiquitous and creative marketers and advertisers are already establishing the use cases that have made the rest of the industry pay attention," said Julie Shumaker, Vice President of Advertiser Solutions, Unity Technologies. "This survey reveals one very important thing: there is a disconnect between the growing demand for AR solutions and the pace at which advertisers, marketers, and creatives are becoming comfortable with the technology. We need to improve AR familiarity among creatives -- both in terms of technical competency and highlighting the cost-effective solutions that are available today."

Just how big a deal are these technological advances for shoppers? New Elastic Path data indicates most shoppers (67%) say they "would switch brands" if a new brand offered a "more futuristic" shopping experience.

Right now, most shoppers consider the best "futuristic" options to be buying from smartwatches and mobile devices, but buying via voice recognition is growing in interest. Of the early adopters to use voice-recognition - like Amazon's Alexa - for purchases, 22% use it multiple times each week and 21% use it "at least weekly".

"The data shows that customers aren't impressed just because something is futuristic," said Harry Chemko, CEO, Elastic Path. "They don't care if something is trendy - they care that their needs are met in the way they expect them to be. Technology like voice commerce, which will only become increasingly integrated into customers' lives, presents brands with the opportunity to bring the purchase experience to shoppers in more seamless ways. You just have to prove that these experiences improve the day-to-day experience rather than becoming just another marketing ploy."

The key to this kind of adoption, according to the report, is to gain consumers' trust. About one-third (37%) say there are too many errors/issues with current voice-recognition commerce.

Tags: ar/vr ads, augmented reality advertising, ecommerce, Elastic Path, Unity Technologies

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