Snapchat Says AR Is Becoming Part of the Shopping Norm

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A 2021 report from Snap Inc. details how AR technology will soon be a major part of your shopping experience.

We’ve seen plenty of data explaining how AR and VR technology can help us learn more in less time, develop more efficient ways to collaborate with colleagues at work, and stay connected with loved ones. We’ve also seen how immersive technology is having a positive impact on the marketing industry. 

A new report from Snapchat published in collaboration with Foresight Factory, ‘Future of Shopping’, gives us a better understanding of just how big an impact AR is having on marketing as consumers return to stores after the COVID-19 pandemic and what it could mean for brands. The report shows how consumers from all around the globe are heavily influenced by branded AR activations and their ability to drive foot traffic through a ‘connected shopping’ experience.

The report also details how AR experiences such as social media filters and apps can be a key driver for sales, engagement, and even customer experience. It is predicted that we will see a 37% increase (2 in 5) in Gen Z shoppers using AR before purchasing a product by 2025.

Snapchat has over 500 million users globally, and AR is a big part of the user experience. The same applies to platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook. It’s not just a tool for posting goofy photos and videos of yourself anymore; it’s a powerful tool that brands can employ to increase customer engagement, whether it be trying on hats, makeup, and jewelry or gamifying a pizza box.

And it’s not just food and clothing. For example, Disney turned to AR to promote Force Friday Weekend, and of course, Snapchat Lens Studio gives you the power to create your own AR content that can be used for fun or business marketing.

According to the report, 62% of US consumers who experienced branded AR content said that it encouraged them to make a purchase online or even in the store. Meanwhile, two in five US shoppers expect AR to be part of the shopping experience in the following categories: clothes, beauty, furniture, luxury, and cars. Four in ten US consumers said that not being able to see how an item looked on them or trying out products played a significant role in their online shopping experience. 

Image Credit: Snap Inc.

Over the years, eCommerce has shifted significantly from shopping online using a desktop computer to shopping online via your smartphone. An article published by shows that 40% of all eCommerce purchases made during the 2018 holiday season were made on a mobile device. That number has continued to grow over the years. Online businesses are always looking at various ways in which they can expand on their websites and fit in with what customers want, for example, they may need to change their payment processing software with resources like so they can adapt their payment plans with any new changes.

With 10 billion mobile devices and tablets in use-many of which featuring AR capabilities–brands are seeing positive results with AR experiences. 40% of people who shop in a physical store will pull out their mobile device to look up product reviews, compare prices with a competitor, or find alternative store locations. In fact, 44% of consumers said they wouldn’t go shopping without their phones. This number jumps up to 63% among millennials, and according to Hootsuite, 82% of Snapchat’s users are millennials. 

Image Credit: Pizza Hut

One of AR technology’s biggest selling points is that it allows you to try before you buy. In the report, Sebastian Schulze, CEO & Co-Founder at Fit Analytics, said, “At the moment, you maybe share a product link and you ask a friend, ‘What do you think?’ And then you get some feedback: ‘Yeah, it would it would look great on you.'”

“But you don’t really know exactly how it would look like. But with AR, you will be able to create a completely new experience where you can say to your friend, ‘Hey let’s meet in one minute. We will create this world and you will see me walking around in a certain dress, and then you can tell me what you think about it.'”

To create the report, Snapchat and Foresight Factory looked at the buying habits of almost 20,000 global consumers; more than 2,500 of whom were from the US. 

For more details, download Snapchat’s Global Report and US Report.

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