If you own a jewelry store, you must be aware that customers visit more than a handful of shops to finalize that one, perfect piece of jewelry, due to the emotional and monetary value involved.
And although this is one of the markets which is heavily reliant on in-store shopping, the physical activity of visiting several stores before selecting a piece of jewelry can be replicated online on your shopping website with the help of AR tech based, Virtual Try-ons.
What is Virtual Try On (VTO)?
Virtual Try-on or VTO is a facility provided by e-commerce platforms to improve the experience of customers visiting their online stores.
The main technology used for a VTO is Augmented Reality (AR), which overlays a 3D model of the actual product onto the environment through a screen. This 3D model is designed to scale, and can interact with the real world surroundings of the visitors.
Through VTO, the customer can virtually ‘put on’ a product available on the website - by clicking on it, switching on their camera and pointing it to their surroundings or themselves.
As a result, the software maps out the environment and displays the 3D model on it through the camera screen, letting one see for themselves if the product suits them or not.
The concept is an alternative to the brick and mortar try rooms. Instead of going to a store and putting on a piece of apparel or inspecting furniture, the customer can visit the website and check out the product all while staying at home.
How does VTO Jewelry work?
Here’s a brief look at how the virtual try-on of a pair of earrings would work.
The customer visits your jewelry website and heads to the ‘earrings’ category. Out of the catalogue, they find a dazzling pair that looks worth it, but they’re still not too sure. On the webpage, they will see the option of ‘Virtual try-on’ beside the pair of earrings they wish to buy.
On clicking, they turn on their cameras, allowing for AI to read their environment and identify their face. The 3D model of the selected earrings are placed onto the ears through the screen with Augmented Reality technology.
This way, the customer can see if the selected earrings suit them or not.
How does providing a VTO Jewelry Service help your Company?
- Competitive Edge: For e-commerce platforms, VTO provides a competitive edge. VTOs help in increasing customer satisfaction because customers are more likely to make the right purchase, despite the experience being wholly online.
- Buyer Confidence: Through VTO, e-commerce platforms can replicate the activity of physically trying on the product - something which is important for jewelry pieces. This makes the customer more confident in their jewelry purchase, and leads to an increase in sales.
- Reducing cost of returns: On online shopping websites, one may not be able to easily judge the size, weight, and look of a jewelry piece just by looking at the pictures or going through product videos. How jewelry fits on someone is largely relative to the person’s own physical traits.
Customers end up making the wrong purchase because the product fits differently on the model than it does on them. Many shopping websites do not allow for a return on jewelry pieces because of its delicacy and size, which leads to an unhappy customer in case they buy the wrong piece.
In cases where a return policy is present, it is often expensive for the company as well. Providing a VTO facility helps in better decision making for the customer which helps retain customers, and reduces wastage caused by returns.
In a physical store while trying on jewelry pieces, customers might end up manhandling the delicate items or dropping them by mistake. This would create an awkward situation between you and your potential buyer, and often results in a ruined piece of jewelry for which either the customer has to pay or you as the owner have to bear the brunt. In both cases, friction is created between you and your target market, something that has a long-term effect. For such cases, an online presence with a VTO facility works best.
VTO Jewelry Examples
Virtual Try Ons have proven to be one of the main features that have allowed online shopping websites to expand their sales.
Australian brand ETRNL Rings provides Virtual Try On service for select rings on their website.
Popular jewelry brand Swarovski uses the VTO feature for many of their unique rings and earrings on their website. The site contains a specific category for jewelry that can be virtually tried.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, jewelry brand Kendra Scott integrated the VTO feature into their website to drive more sales. Kavalri, an Australian brand, also provides this feature.
Among the first Indian jewelry brands to facilitate virtual try-ons for their customers on their website is Tanishq.
Virtual try-ons in the jewelry industry have become increasingly important, especially as more and more customers are shifting to e-commerce platforms for their purchase. Where physical stores are still heavy drivers of sale for jewelry, we could see a future where e-commerce completely replaces traditional forms of jewelry markets. As 3D and AR technology becomes even more advanced, jewelry virtual try-ons could be realer than ever.