Website Design

Augmented Reality and the Future of Web Design

Augmented Reality and the Future of Web Design

In the dawn of a new internet age, augmented reality (AR) will play a critical role in elevating our messaging. As leaders in digital strategy and communication, STAUFFER is already planning for these fundamental changes in how our client’s end-users interact with their content. In the not-too-distant future, everyday folk will have instant access to supplementary information, and immersive technology will be ubiquitous in the cheapest smartphones (not to mention headsets like the Apple Vision Pro).

As the usage of AR becomes common among the public, brands must adapt their creative strategy, applying new tactics that meld the digital world with the physical. In-store signs and pop displays will graduate from mere cardboard and paper signage collecting dust in a room as they will be transformed into experiences and immersive touchpoints. AR will be the tech that manifests experiential sales collateral that can be taken home, played with, and eventually convert shoppers into buyers. 

Let’s take a deeper look at existing AR tech today and peer into the future of how AR marketing will change linear web design from flat pieces of creative content into living, breathing ecosystems malleable to creating the ultimate experience:

ENHANCED USER EXPERIENCES:

AR will provide users with an immersive and interactive experience, transforming the traditional browsing experience. For example, 3D modelling will allow users to virtually interact with products or services before purchasing.

Adidas has been tinkering with an in-app AR tool to try sneakers virtually at home for the past few years. By deploying a filter (similar to a photo filter), shoppers have a new way to try before they buy, thus saving them money in returns and shipping. 

IKEA Place was one of the pioneers of utilising this technology, allowing consumers to bring IKEA to their houses and plant furniture pieces in their own homes. The home renovation and design app Houzz uses a similar idea with their “View in My Room 3D” tool, which helps shoppers conceptualise what a newly designed room could look like.

AR CAN BE USEFUL ON LAPTOPS AND DESKTOPS AS WELL

Similar to the example above, but working on a desktop, companies like glasses retailer Warby Parker are using desktop and laptop cameras to try on frames and give customers an experience similar to being inside a brick-and-mortar establishment. AR can also enable a complete virtual store experience for e-commerce websites, allowing users to navigate through store aisles, virtually try out clothes, or place furniture in their space to assess its appearance.

IN-STORE NAVIGATION AND PERSONALISED CONTENT

AR can revolutionise store navigation – users can “walk” through physical spaces, interact with tangible elements, and overlay additional information. Personalised content customization will enhance user engagement and conversions by extrapolating buyers’ personal data and synthesising it with AI tools. Imagine walking through Whole Foods and accessing supplementary knowledge like recipes and allergy info tailored to your personal preferences and restrictions simply by aiming your camera at a product.

DATA VISUALISATION

Complex data can be visualised and interacted with in a three-dimensional space, interpreting data more intuitive and user-friendly. Sales pitches and marketing mediums will become more dynamic as data can be represented in three dimensions. Not only that, but data can also be animated to highlight fluctuations in numbers, and multiple charts can be thumbed through by the presenter as if it were a sales deck.

A NEW WAY TO HUMANISE CUSTOMER REPRESENTATIVES: 

Websites can blend digital AR experiences more seamlessly with real-world environments, providing users with an integrated and coherent experience that brings context to products and your sales team. 

As headsets technology advances to become more wearable in public, the public will have a heads-up display for everything. Buyers will be able to learn more about who they are interacting with, like their favourite products and feedback from other customers on how well they relate your product to them.

INCREASED ACCESSIBILITY

AR can potentially make web content more accessible to people with disabilities. For example, visual or auditory AR cues can guide shoppers with vision issues with scalable vector graphics that can increase or decrease in size based on their needs. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals and non-native speakers can also communicate more fluidly with site displays and members of your sales team, further removing barriers between your brand and a sale.

Even though AR technology is evolving, it’s essential for web designers and the clients that employ them to consider the potential challenges in implementing a cohesive AR experience. Ensuring AR functionalities are optimised for various devices and platforms will take some consolidation and strategy, and the team at STAUFFER has the team to do it. If you want to learn more about being one of the few brave trailblazers to take the first steps into this uncharted territory, please feel free to reach out to our team.



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