StyleDotMe's AR platform mirrAR allows shoppers to try jewellery on digital platforms of client brands without actually having to wear the pieces. Their innovative AR tech works automatically on the digitalized version of jewellery on real-time. It is being used by leading retailers like Tanishq, Amrapali, PC Jewellers, and Kalyan Jewellers etc.
Their tech has enabled an increase in conversions for the brands, reduce in return rates, unlimited tryons and is also solving the issue of sanitization associated with accessories that could get damaged if wiped with alcohol-infused solutions. They are funded by IAN and angel investors like Ajay Gupta (Head – Strategy and Marketing, Ericsson India), Deval Tibrewalla (CEO- Polo Towers Group), Dr Ritesh Mallik (Founder- Innov8) and many others. In an exclusive conversation, Meghna Saraogi, Co-Founder & CEO, StyleDotMe talks about AR product that is transforming the shopping & retail experience in India.
How do you think COVID 19 has made retail a technology-driven business? How new-age technologies like AI, AR can allow shoppers to try items like fashion, jewellery on digital platforms or client brands?
The retail sector in India is witnessing significant changes in the Covid-19 era with the innovation of new technology. Contactless shopping is going to become the new trend with Indian consumers avoiding crowded stores and preferring low exposure. The Immersive Media Market in India is expected to grow to USD 6.5 Billion by 2022 and AR is estimated to grow to USD 5.9 Billion by 2022.
Many new technological changes on part of the retailers are expected such as widespread use of virtual try-ons that support contactless shopping with the help of AR. In a world where social distancing and sanitization is set to become the norm, AR tech will be able to solve concerns arising from the presence of multiple customers in stores or the very fact that every piece of jewellery will need to be sanitized once it’s touched.
How the technology is helping brands to increase their reach and enabling easy checkouts by providing shoppers with more product options?
AR as a technology enables an innovative shopping experience as it is more interactive, engaging and seamless. AR leads to a higher customer engagement, which often translates into successful sales.
Even in a situation where customers cannot go to the store physically, through mirrAR, they will be able to try-on jewellery virtually sitting at home. This try before you buy approach, coupled with access to a larger inventory, will lead to easy checkout & greater satisfaction & higher sales for the business, that too without having any physical inventory or dealing with sanitization issues!
How does AR help retailers in improving sales and mitigate marketing cost?
Emerging technologies like AR are extremely beneficial for retailers since they drive customer engagement and facilitate faster sales cycles. The whole idea of being able to virtually try-on any product sitting anywhere in the world is very tempting and AR can help enable that. This would bring down the barriers of the physicality of location for retailers and allow everyone to shop from any retail store in the world. A seamless customer experience will always lead to happy customers who will not only keep coming back to your platform but also check out with products. This is exactly the philosophy on which mirrAR operates.
AR also opens new sales opportunities in the form of virtual events, where retailers and brands can set up virtual promotions and virtual product presentations to generate excitement and invite customers to exclusive, holographic-based sales events. This tech will bring a significant change in retail marketing strategies. While promoting the try-before-you-buy strategy is one of the ways to attract customers, think of adding QR codes to billboards, promotional flyers, and other marketing collaterals to beam holograms that offer more information and provide unique brand experiences. mirrAR was also the AR partner for BJewelled 2020, India’s first virtual conference for the Gems & Jewellery Industry.
Even in terms of Marketing, AR is unique, engaging and therefore, social. Augmented Reality enables advertisers to build deeper connections with consumers if employed correctly in a brand’s communication strategies. From event marketing to emailers, AR helps set the brand apart. Even for all Jewellers that use our platform, they now engage with their consumers by not just sharing designs on WhatsApp but providing them with an opportunity to try before they buy!
How is AR Tech the future of retail businesses?
The purpose of Augmented Reality is to project the virtual world onto a real-world environment and offer an immersive experience to the user. This remarkable capability will play a fundamental role in building an entirely new and engaging shopping experiences for online consumers. It literally brings the in-store experience to the homes of consumers!
With the integration of AR, online commerce platforms or stores gain the capability to match the experience of trying out products like one would in a physical store. It leads to higher satisfaction and quicker conversions, with the added advantage of no shopper’s remorse!
AR truly has the power to revolutionise retail. It’s best suited for the consumers that crave convenience and instant solutions.
Can you share the case study of any of your retail clients who have deployed your AR solutions?
Brands such as Tanishq, HazooriLal Legacy, Kalyan Jewellery, Senco, HazooriLal have been trusting our product for their business needs. We’ve also set up zero inventory experience zones at airports with Tanishq, a brand we’ve been associated with for around 1.5 years now!
Currently we have 150+ clients across 28 cities right now and are now going global!
Our product has significantly reduced return rates & increased conversion for the brands.