In another sign that brands are looking for an edge to capture more online sales, one consumer goods technology company is leveraging augmented reality to give customers a virtual experience with products before buying.
Cooler and outdoor accessory manufacturer, retailer and distributor Yeti has launched an AR and 3D experience that enables customers to view more than 50 virtual products in their own physical environments using their smartphones. Customers can check out the products from different angles and see close-up details without having to download an app, Consumer Goods Technology reported.
The technology, which is available on Yeti’s website, is from Vertebrae, which also works with brands such as adidas, Coach, David's Bridal, Facebook, Microsoft, Toyota and Herschel Supply Co.
Yeti’s AR launch comes as more brands are looking for ways to differentiate themselves among a sea of online competitors as more shoppers continue to buy online. The timing of Yeti’s launch also aligns with other major internet platforms, including Google, ramping up their AR capabilities into shopping programs.
Yeti, which is known for its pricey and extremely durable coolers, sees the technology as a way for customers to better understand the company’s high-quality products and the heavy duty materials used. It may also help customers get over the high price point of the products. The launch also coincides with Yeti’s new line of products, the Crossroads collection, which can be viewed in 3D and AR.
“It was important to us to provide 3D and AR experiences for our signature coolers — something no one has done for this category of products — to help shoppers with research and making purchases,” Matt King, Yeti’s chief information officer, told CGT.
The company also expects the AR offering to boost mobile engagement, where most customers do their browsing but may be hesitant to pull the trigger on a purchase, according to King, who told CGT Yeti will measure success of the technology initiative by online engagement.
“We're also eager for new insights into how shoppers interact with the virtual product renderings,” he told CGT. “What features they zoom in on, which color SKUs they choose to view in AR, and so on, to get a better understanding of which product features matter to customers.”
Yeti experienced 19.1% rise in sales to $1.1 billion during 2020, CGT reported. Consumers flocked to outdoor retailers like Yeti during the COVID-19 pandemic as outdoor activities skyrocketed in popularity.