No matter how quickly online shopping grows and develops, when looking for clothes, the online shopping experience is still much more boring compared to traditional brick-and-mortar stores. While it’s very easy to find all kinds of clothes online, you cannot touch them and try them on. Because of this, many people order clothes that don’t fit and then return them. This is also a reason why your online store sales may not meet your expectations.
In contrast, brick-and-mortar stores have rooms where you can spend as much time as you want, trying different clothes so you can buy those that fit you perfectly. When shopping online, you can only see images, but images won’t help you understand how clothes will look on you. Fortunately, now online stores have a solution — virtual fitting rooms.
Virtual Fitting Rooms Are a Solution that You Need
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, offline stores needed to close, and virtual fitting rooms became the only solution. However, the pandemic has just highlighted a problem that had existed in this industry for years: brick-and-mortar stores don’t have enough fitting rooms for all of their customers so whenever you visit a popular store, you can see many people waiting in lines.
After many stores were forced to try virtual fitting rooms during the pandemic, these companies realized the benefits of such a solution so many of them are going to keep this feature on their websites. If you want to get fewer returns and decrease your bounce rates, virtual fitting rooms can help you.
Being unable to choose a precise size online, customers often purchase a few different sizes to try them at home and then make returns. Such behavior became especially common during the lockdown, with customers returning $428 billion worth of merchandise, which is more than 10% of all retail sales in the U.S. For every billion dollars made in sales, an average retailer gets $106 million returns.
If customers cannot find a free fitting room when shopping in a brick-and-mortar store, they may also pick more clothes to return some of them later, but they won’t leave the store, and they might also pick something else while waiting. This is not the case with online stores, though. If you want to increase your online store sales, you should make the shopping process as user-friendly and simple as possible, and you should also try to decrease the return rate.
After more and more stores started to try virtual fitting room solutions on their websites, it makes sense to expect them to become one of the strongest trends in eCommerce in the near future. In this article, we will consider the benefits of virtual fitting rooms in more detail so that you can see how they can help you increase your online store sales and keep your customers satisfied. First of all, let’s take a closer look at the virtual fitting rooms and consider the way they work.
What Are Virtual Fitting Rooms?
A virtual fitting room is a feature that enables your website visitors to try on clothes without accessing them physically. The whole process works in real-time. Your visitors can evaluate the style of an item, its size, and see how it fits. Such solutions are developed by various IT companies like VironIt.com and are based on augmented reality technology.
Virtual fitting room software creates a 3D model of a user’s body based on the information obtained from a webcam. The result is a 360° model so the user can rotate it and see how an item fits, from different angles. Many solutions of this kind are AI-powered. AI algorithms help create full-body models so that users can see themselves as if they were standing in front of a mirror in a real fitting room.
The model created by an AI algorithm is combined with the chosen item by using radio frequency identification (RFID). This technology scans items selected by the shopper. The item is overlaid on the 3D model so the user can see how it fits without trying it on physically. There are many solutions from different companies that offer almost the same functionality but are intended for different platforms.
For instance, Apple has its ARKit that can be used to develop virtual fitting room apps for iOS, and Microsoft Kinect offers such functionality for Windows. Amazon even introduced its Echo Look device with a voice-controlled camera that is based on the augmented reality technology and is aimed to work as a “magic mirror.” Now that you know what virtual fitting rooms are and how they work, let’s take a closer look at their benefits.
Benefits of Virtual Fitting Rooms
● Decreased return rates
Returns are always a problem for fashion brands. If your return rate is high, it can not only create additional administrative difficulties but also decrease your profits. The impact of returns on profits becomes especially tangible when companies offer free returns. A great thing about virtual fitting rooms is that they can help you address this issue and decrease your return rate.
As much as 30% of returns in eCommerce happen because customers pick smaller sizes, and another 22% of returns happen when the size is too big. You can minimize the return rate by offering virtual fitting rooms so that your customers can see how different items look on them.
● Building an emotional connection with customers
Every marketer knows how powerful people’s emotions are. Have you ever walked into a store without a clear intention of buying anything specific, but the environment was so cozy that you’ve bought something? If you’ve purchased something because of the interior and music in a store, you’re not alone. When customers are in a good mood and they see that you care about them, they will be more likely to buy something from you.
A virtual fitting room can do the same for your website and increase your online store sales by showing that you care about your customers. Besides, trying on clothes online will deliver positive emotions because such an experience is similar to playing a game. 34% of consumers say that virtual fitting rooms make online shopping fun. Moreover, if your competitors are not using virtual fitting rooms yet, this feature can become a significant competitive advantage.
● Generating buzz
Virtual fittings are still a new technology so not all online shops can offer it. Companies that have already tried it, however, quickly realized that virtual fitting rooms can increase online store sales. One of the main advantages of virtual fitting rooms is that they can help you stand out.
Nothing can help you generate buzz around your brand as effectively as innovative technologies that create engaging experiences. Given that virtual fitting rooms are based on augmented reality, you can come up with various creative solutions, creating a unique shopping experience that people will be excited to talk about.
● Promoting social shopping
Virtual fitting rooms enable customers to share pictures of them dressed in your products, on social media. If you want to generate more social media traffic, virtual fitting rooms might be quite beneficial. People are more likely to share images of their 3D models than marketing content, and their followers are more likely to visit your website after they see user-generated content because people trust their friends more than marketers. Therefore, virtual fitting rooms can become one of your eCommerce marketing tools.
● Encouraging visitors to try on more items
You would like to sell everything you got but there are always some limitations regarding the number of items your customers can try. In offline stores, even if a customer would like to purchase a huge bundle of clothes, they will likely try on just a few items because of the people who are waiting in line. Fortunately, customers don’t need to deal with any limitations in online stores.
Virtual fitting rooms can increase your online store sales by enabling your customers to try on and buy more items. A perfect solution is to combine virtual fitting rooms with personalized recommendations so that your visitors can scroll through different options and match clothes with shoes, hats, and accessories. Not only will such an approach boost your sales, but it will also create a unique, engaging customer experience.
● Increasing loyalty
As we’ve already mentioned above, virtual fitting rooms can help you decrease return rates. The fewer returns you get, the less frustrated your customers are, and the higher customer satisfaction. The main factor that impacts customer loyalty is customer experience, and adding virtual fitting rooms to your website can take customer experience to the next level because such a feature is not only useful but also engaging.
One of the main reasons why people choose to shop in brick-and-mortar shops is that they can touch and try on clothes before purchasing them. Offline stores always have fitting rooms, and they used to be the main advantage of offline stores. However, now online stores can offer virtual fitting rooms so that their customers can see how different items look on them.
Virtual fitting rooms offer countless benefits for eCommerce businesses.
But if you really want to leave an everlasting impression on your customers, you can choose to take your store to the next level and build a brand. How can you do it?
Easy, you can start by shipping your items in personalised packaging and inserting in every parcel a coupon card with a discount code for the next purchase.
This is the best way to start building a loyal client base, while not spending thousands over thousands of dollars in personalisation.
Lucky for you, Yakkyofy offers this service in addition to many more!
We can easily produce custom packaging for you, source high-quality items from some of the best factories in China, and ship your goods to your clients in 7-10 days in several countries, thanks to our Special Line Shipping Service.
We will provide a fully integrated system, when you source your products with us and import them to your store, the orders for these items will appear on your Yakkyofy dashboard as well, where you will be able to pay for them and then we will take care of the rest!
If you want full automation, our eWallet will help you with that, as soon as orders reach your store, they will be automatically paid on Yakkyofy as well, and we will start the processing of your orders as soon as they arrive!
So, as you see, virtual fitting rooms will get your clients interested, personalised packaging will get them staying and we will help you source the best items to keep them happy!
The combination of these actions will very likely decrease your return rates and ease your headaches.
So what are you waiting for?