It is an undeniable fact that Singapore boasts an extremely strong business sector. In fact, the economy of Singapore grew by no less than 4.3 per cent in the first financial quarter of 2018 alone (1). This is the very same reason why businesses of all sizes should be looking to capitalise upon such forward momentum. While there are many tools at their disposal, some cutting-edge options need to be appreciated in order to prepare for what certainly appears to be a bright future. One interesting concept is known as augmented reality (referred to as AR for the remainder of this article). How do these systems function? What makes them different from virtual reality? Why are these such potent tools for Singaporean businesses?
AR Explained: More Than Meets the Eye
As the name suggests, the main intention of AR is to provide a more hands-on experience to shoppers. As opposed to interacting with a two-dimensional screen, they can now become immersed within a three-dimensional virtual environment. Although not necessarily intended to provide the “walkthroughs” associated with video games, it can allow shoppers to examine products in close detail by offering them a three-dimensional perspective. Whether referring to scrutinising the design of a bicycle or examining the latest fashion accessories, the possibilities are nearly endless.
This is why major cloud-based software providers have already entered into this burgeoning marketplace. Intuitive applications such as those offered by Shopify can be implemented with little effort and they can be used to showcase a virtually limitless number of products. Another amazing advantage of this software is that while it is quite advanced, businesses will not need to possess any type of prior technical knowledge. They are cost-effective options and they can work wonders when promoting a brand. This is particularly relevant when referring to Singapore, as competition is fierce. The use of AR will enable a business to rise head and shoulders above its counterparts.
Vastly Enhancing the Customer Experience
While the business benefits directly related to AR cannot be denied, we also need to realise the very real organic approach that it takes. In the past, users were hardly able to interact with a website (or the products and services that it offered). Zooming in on an image or obtaining a 360-degree perspective of a room were the few options which existed at the time. AR is now eliminating such boundaries. Shoppers wish to feel as if their needs are being catered to. AR provides a personalised appeal that would be impossible to achieve with traditional methods. Not only will this help to bring any product “to life” within the digital domain, but website visitors are much more likely to engage with what is being offered. Additional benefits include:
- Increased buyer confidence.
- A greater level of brand recognition.q
- Fewer chances that an item will be returned.
- The possibility to fully customise one’s shopping experience.
On a final note, it is wise to briefly mention the fact that it is much easier to implement an AR application when compared to more complicated and challenging systems such as a fully immersive virtual reality program. In fact, most current smartphones and tablets already possess the processing power to handle such bespoke applications.
Any Singaporean enterprise that wishes to succeed should leverage the power of all of the tools at its disposal. The growing presence of AR is a perfect example of how the digital shopping experience is being transformed. If you have been hoping to enjoy a competitive edge, this technology could represent the ideal solution.