The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge and undeniable impact on our lives and businesses. There has been a major shift in consumer habits as more and more people are turning to online shopping while safely social distancing at home. It’s likely that this trend will continue after the pandemic.
Unfortunately, this shift means many businesses have failed or lost their edge due to poor online presence.
If you’re struggling to sell your products in the pandemic-induced e-commerce craze, you might want to improve your web design. However, if you want a real game-changer, you should invest in product visualization.
How the pandemic has affected our buying habits
While we have been isolating or working from home, many of us started relying heavily on online purchases. In fact, online shopping has skyrocketed during the pandemic.
For many, getting an Amazon delivery has become a major source of their daily serotonin. What’s more, this change in our shopping habits is probably here to stay.
One survey has found that a vast majority (84%) of respondents who shop online plan to continue doing so after the pandemic.
As e-commerce is already surpassing levels previously not expected until 2025, the competition is also becoming tighter and consumers pickier.
So how can your brand capitalize on this change, win over consumers, and rise above the competition? The answer is simple — product visualization.
What is product visualization?
Visualization is a 3D rendering of your product, which can help the customer get a better picture of it. While e-commerce businesses have been using images forever, they are simply not enough anymore.
Instead of letting potential customers use a measuring tape and their imagination to visualize a sofa you’re selling, why not help them out?
3D renditions allow them to inspect the product in full detail, rotate it, and even see it in context. This 360-view helps the customer evaluate the item carefully and make a solid purchasing decision.
If the product is customizable or comes in variations, you can allow the user to play with texture, size, color, and other variables and scrutinize the material up close. It’s not all about the looks, though.
If a product is valued for its functionality, you may also choose to display its technical abilities. For example, you could allow customers to open the drawers and cabinets and peek inside.
The best part is that product visualization is not expensive either. In fact, it’s more affordable and time-efficient than photoshoots. You just have to provide your designer with the prototype model, and it will be done in no time.
You can display your products in white space so that the details are clear against the white background. However, it’s also important to enable customers to visualize the item in the environment of their choice.
If they’re shopping for a leather armchair for their study, for example, they’ll want to see it in a similar setting.
As a matter of fact, 3D design apps are becoming increasingly popular among non-designers as well.
They allow them to exercise their vision in a virtual setting before they decide to execute it in their actual homes.
As a result, many brands have started to integrate room scenes and design tools to help customers see the beauty of their products in cozy settings. Some tools make it possible to easily design your own space and place the items wherever you want.
Other apps can scan the actual room for dimensions and recreate the space.
Many brands decide to partner with 3D design apps, which then include their furniture in the app catalog instead of using generic options. This way, when people try out different furniture in the app, they may opt to buy your item specifically.
What’s more, some design tools that use augmented reality (AR) help users see the product directly in their room and allow for a 360-view as they move the camera around.
How product visualization can help e-commerce brands
Consumer habits have changed, and technology has become more advanced, so why not use that to your advantage? Here’s how visualization will help your business.
People are more likely to make a purchase
Consumers are becoming pickier every day. This is no surprise as they are spoiled for choice. If you want people to go from window shopping to completing a purchase, visualization might be what convinces them to do it.
They are much more likely to buy if they can visualize the item in space.
Shoppers are less likely to be disappointed
We all know people who ordered something online and got a completely different product. Even if your product is top-rate, it still might not be what your customers expected based on an image.
On the other hand, if they can see the item from every angle and inspect it in detail, they will get exactly what they have seen on the site.
You’ll strengthen your brand image
Offering product visualization will distinguish you as a highly professional business that takes its customers seriously. Knowing that what they see is exactly what they will get will make customers trust your brand and happily recommend it to others.
You get an edge over competitors
Product visualization is becoming increasingly popular, but not many brands are using it yet. You can use this fact to your advantage and gain a significant competitive edge over other brands in your business.
If they want to make a purchase online, consumers are much more likely to go for a product they can visualize than take a shot in the dark.
Happy customers are returning customers
Finally, if your customers are happy with the first purchase, they are highly likely to return. They may start by buying one item just to try your brand and end up furnishing an entire house with your products.
As you can see, product visualization can take your e-commerce business to an entire new level and help you thrive in the post-pandemic new normal.
Jennifer Wilson is a writer at Qeedle.com She knows business processes and operations management inside out.
As she understands all the challenges of running a small business firsthand, it’s her mission to tackle the topics that are most relevant to entrepreneurs and offer viable solutions.