Displaying Various Product Types
Digitization At The Service Of Interior Design
Online sales of household goods and home improvement products have a compound growth of about 10% per year in the US. As this growth in online shopping continues, it is becoming vital for e-commerce platforms and design companies to ensure that they offer customers tools to view their products, especially when it comes to designer furniture.
Furniture is one of the most challenging items to sell online. It is considered a significant purchase that requires mulling over color, material, size, and other details. Giving customers variations of a product, especially in 3D, will allow them to visualize it better and increase the chances of making a purchase.
People prefer products that they can personalize. They get excited when they can make decisions based on their unique tastes. It is thus essential for home retailing platforms to create such an experience for customers where they can personalize products online and see these changes in real time..
In2real is a studio that develops highly aesthetic and functional 3D configurators for clients such as Infiniti Design and Paola Lenti. With this article, we will provide you with the tools to learn more about 3D configurators for the interior design world.
How To Display Various Product Types
Part of giving customers choices is showing them various product types product so they can select their preferred options – for example, furniture in different colors, configurations, or material finishes. Regardless of the attribute, offering customers multiple product variants is vital. Here are some considerations for delivering these alternatives online:
Show Variants Under One Listing
The first thing to note is that various product types should appear under separate listings. In contrast, variations of the same product should show up under a single listing. One listing makes it easier for the customer to browse household products, like furniture, and draw immediate comparisons.
Label Product Attributes Appropriately
E-commerce platforms should make the various product types visible on the listing and grouped appropriately (e.g., color, material, etc.). Use clear, easy-to-understand labels for attributes. For example, assign color titles such as “maroon” or “burgundy” rather than “red.” It gives the customer a better sense of the actual color.
Allow Easy Preview Of Product Variations
You can add different color swatches or thumbnails underneath product images or display the various categories on a toolbar on the side when a customer views an item. You can also include a filter option that lists the different attributes.
Use High-Quality Images To Show Product Variations
E-commerce listings should include at least one image per product variant, with more being ideal. Some platforms use static, 2D images to show furniture alternatives. Typically, these listings consist of orthographic pictures allowing customers to get a front, side, top, and perspective view of the item.
Show your furniture in the environment
Another approach to boost sales is to show your furniture items in context. If the item appears in a room or office, the customer can visualize it better within their own space. Lifestyle scenes also give customers a better sense of the furniture item’s features (color, fabric, and size).
Zoom in and out
One thing to note when using images is that you must include the ability for the customer to zoom in and out of the image to view product details up close. However, suppose you’re incorporating this functionality on your site. Then, it is vital to ensure that the image remains high-resolution when customers zoom in, like using a vector image instead of a raster format.
Physical and digital catalog: some differences
The tools most used by the company’s sales force are and remain explanatory catalogs. They contain all the aesthetic and technical information needed to present products to customers. But let’s look at some key differences in creating a good sales tool.
Real Catalogue Photos
Traditional photography is one method that furniture sellers can use to showcase their products. However, it is no longer a favorable option.
Actual photographs are usually available from furniture manufacturers. Sellers may also hire a studio or create an in-house photography team to conduct photo shoots that produce the precise images required. However, hiring a studio or team to carry out the photo shoots to date is very expensive, time-consuming and complicated.
Rendered Catalogue Images
Rendered images (i.e., photo realistic images created using computer software) are a more efficient way for companies to list products. This is becoming more popular than traditional photography for a few reasons:
- The costs involved are minimal.
- You can make ongoing changes to the images to suit your business needs.
- You can easily create lifestyle environments to portray your furniture products.
The rendering process starts with a designer creating a 3D model of the furniture items, which is usually done in-house. The designer responsible for creating the final images (rendering) will typically proceed by adding lighting (to imitate natural or professional lighting) and applying texture to the surface of the furniture model. The software then generates a high-quality product image that you can upload immediately to your online site.
The benefits of using rendered images include a shorter production time and a consistent high quality. This technology also allows the company to place their products in any imaginable environment.
Digital Age Tools To Show Various Product Types
As convenient as e-commerce is, its biggest challenge compared to a physical store is that customers lack full-sensory experience and cannot interact with a product in the same way. Traditionally, online marketplaces couldn’t even offer customers a 360° view of products or allow them to customize attributes.
But e-commerce has come a long way since then. Nowadays, sellers can employ various digital tools to help customers view and personalize products to drive sales. Customers can now have interactive experiences that range from digital catalogs to videos and 3D configurations.
A digital catalog allows a furniture seller to:
- – Adapt images and product data as often as required.
- – Share it instantly on various online platforms.
- – Save the business ample time and costs.
- – Contribute to sustainability measures by not using paper.
Customers can also navigate digital catalogs easily and on their own time. Creating digital furniture records is simple if you have a digital catalog creator and you can even include video material to enhance the content.
Most software requires you to upload a PDF version of a catalog to which you apply the software tools to make it interactive. For example, you can link images to your online marketplace and personalize them with your business branding. After that, it’s as simple as sharing the digital catalog on your various marketplace platforms.
Featuring videos on your e-commerce furniture platform, YouTube, and other social media platforms is an engaging method that allows customers to see and visualize the products. In turn, this can translate to an increase in sales revenue.
According to Wyzowl, 88% say a video convinced them to buy something online. Providing this form of content can thus increase furniture sales, whether it be in the form of vlogs, video testimonials, or tutorials.
Videos can focus on several topics, including:
- – Tips on furniture maintenance.
- – Behind-the-scenes footage of the making of the furniture item.
- – Sharing customer reviews on the product.
- – Highlighting any specialized features.
- – Present different shots of the furniture item in various spaces.
- – Offer advice on how to decorate a room around the product style.
- – Illustrate and explain the materials used in the manufacturing process.
A 3D configurator is a software application that allows potential customers to personalize products, like furniture, in real-time online.
Furniture is one of the products that people want to be able to personalize. Offering product or modular configuration on your online platform is the easiest way to provide customers with this choice when browsing furniture items. Customers can then configure specific ‘modules,’ i.e., personalizing features or parts of a product until they are pleased with the result.
3D configurators, therefore, provide an engaging and interactive shopping experience to customers. It shows photorealistic 3D models of products from all angles, which helps people to visualize and customize items. A 3D product visualizer also benefits online stores who offer many product variations.
When customers use 3D configurators, they will thus be able to do various things, like:
- – Spin the product around to get a 360° view of it.
- – Zoom in and out to view finer product details.
- – Choose the type of upholstery materials (e.g., suede, leather, etc.).
- – Choose from various finishes according to color (e.g., navy, olive green, lilac, etc.).
- – Choose furniture size and layout (configuration).
Augmented Reality Visuals
Augmented Reality (AR) enables furniture design to be experienced in 3D visualization. AR is a technology that superimposes digital images onto the physical environment, allowing consumers to customize their own products and visualize how it would look in their own space.
AR technology can be used to simulate furniture inside homes, giving customers the opportunity to experience their desired color and size in the given space.Furniture purchases can be expensive and taxing on the customer, as they mull over the specifics of each piece and how it will fit into their homes. AR makes the online shopping experience fast,creative and personalized, easing shoppers worries and simplifying the process.
Additionally, AR offers an exciting way to provide customers with life-like visual imagery of furniture before investing in large scale projects like renovations or remodeling. Customers can see exactly how their furniture selection will appear in their homes – without ever needing to step foot in the store. AR can also help reduce costs associated with manufacturing, delivery and customer returns. AR offers an unprecedented amount of convenience and accuracy, for both the manufacturer and the customer, that makes furniture shopping easier than ever before.
Explore our configurators page!
The Importance Of Product Customization Tools
Approximately 66% of shoppers expect retailers to know what they want regarding variations, and 52% of online customers now expect the option to personalize products.
Online retailers must analyze customer behavior data and provide them with preferred customization options to increase satisfaction rates and sales and strengthen their company’s reputation. Happy customers will return, share their reviews with others, and remain loyal if their experience meets their expectationst. Which, nowadays, is a choice. That is where digital configuration tools come in.
Digital customization tools enable customers to see a 2D or 3D visual of an item, along with all the personalized detailing. Although only used by some global e-commerce sites, these tools will become the norm in online retailing. It will help a business build a reputable brand reputation, compete with others, and increase revenue in the future.
The 3D Configurator As An Added Value Tool
Much has been said already about the necessity for 3D configurator technology in today’s online retail environment. The benefits include, but are not limited to:
- – Saving business owners time, energy, and money.
- – Resulting in a more pleasant customer experience since shoppers can get a realistic idea of the product and personalize its features.
- – Offering shoppers a quicker and more practical experience by avoiding unnecessary images with each product variation, shortening the decision-making process.
- – Reducing abandoned items in a customer’s cart and the return rates since they would have been able to select and customize things to their exact specifications.
- – Increasing customer loyalty and satisfaction, thus enhancing your brand reputability and credibility.
- – Allowing customers to make customized decisions in real time will enable businesses to track their shopping behavior and obtain instant feedback.
Online sales are increasing, showing no signs of slowing down in the future. Suppose e-commerce platforms want to stay ahead in the game. Then, they need to offer customers what they want: the choice to personalize their products. This functionality will improve customer satisfaction and translate into more sales and revenue.
A designer by training, I have been working on communications and marketing for In2real since 2019. You can engage with me and my team to identify your company’s needs and define the right strategy.