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Digital Service & Product Designs

How Augmented Reality can enhance the customer experience

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In the face of increasing competition and price pressure, companies are often left with one only key differentiator: a better customer experience. Augmented Reality (AR) offers businesses and brands new opportunities to significantly improve the customer experience. From virtual try-ons and product introductions to AR-guided tours through stores or hotels, the possibilities are diverse. AR already presents exciting opportunities today to create a unique customer experience, and with the potential introduction of Apple Glasses, this technology may soon become even more integrated into our daily lives.

New technologies are reshaping how companies and brands interact with their customers. A positive customer experience can strengthen trust and loyalty, while a negative one can harm a company's image and lead to customer loss. AR is one such technology that presents exciting possibilities.

What is Augmented Reality?

AR is a technology that integrates digital information into the physical world. It enables users, using mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, and special AR glasses, to see and interact with virtual objects in the real world.

Examples of Augmented Reality applications

AR offers companies and brands new ways to communicate marketing messages to their target audiences. Here are some examples of how AR can be used to enhance the customer experience:

Virtual try-ons & product testing:

Customers can virtually try on clothing or test furniture in their living spaces before making a purchase decision. This builds confidence during the buying process, as customers can see if the sofa matches their existing decor before ordering.

Product onboarding:

Instructional manuals often end up in the drawer unread. AR can help introduce customers to new products and features by displaying digital information directly on the product, explaining its functions and applications. This can significantly reduce buyer's remorse and increase customer loyalty.

Customer service:

If there are problems with a product, customer service or support has to help. For many companies, this is a cost factor that shouldn’t be underestimated. From a customer’s point of view, it is crucial how quickly and efficiently the problem is solved. It can be frustrating if tons of emails have to be written back and forth or 20 minutes of music in the telephone queue have to be endured. AR can aid in resolving product issues efficiently, reducing costs associated with customer service or support. Technicians in fields like machinery and equipment can use AR to become independent problem solvers at customer sites.

AR-guided tours:

AR can guide customers through retail stores or hotels, offering an interactive experience. Customers using AR applications on their smartphones or AR glasses can explore various products or premises, enhancing their engagement. This technology is already being used by some retailers and hotels to provide an interactive experience for their customers.

Interactive AR content on packaging or displays:

AR technology can also be used on packaging or displays to provide customers with interactive content. By using their smartphones or AR glasses, customers can access additional information about products or services.

Personalized product recommendations:

With AR glasses, sales representatives can display customer data like purchase history or demographics during sales conversations, enabling personalized product recommendations.

Conclusion and outlook

Augmented Reality is an exciting technology that can enhance the customer experience across various industries. Although AR glasses are not yet widely adopted, Apple's announcement of Apple Glasses, which can project virtual content into the real world, has raised expectations. It is anticipated that Apple Glasses will be compatible with Siri, Apple's intelligent voice assistant, and other Apple devices like the iPhone and Apple Watch. It is also speculated that the Apple Glasses will be able to perform facial recognition and eye tracking. There are still challenges to overcome, such as data privacy concerns, and the launch date remains uncertain. Nevertheless, we eagerly await the further development of AR technology and the innovations it will bring in the future.