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The Future of Shopping: Augmented Reality Experiences

Social commerce is really taking off and is no longer just the “next big thing”. As part of the social commerce revolution, augmented reality will become more prevalent, helping consumers make decisions about their purchases and brands connect with their customer base. According to a recent survey from Snapchat, 92% of Gen Z consumers want to use AR tools for ecommerce purposes. In addition, 60% of Gen Z consumers surveyed said that they favor AR in their ecommerce experiences because it feels more personal.

Now the race is on between which social media platform will win users over with the best AR shopping experience. Snapchat is investing in AR features that allow shoppers to visualize how a product looks before they buy it, working with major fashion brands like Gucci and American Eagle. Another experience that they are already offering is with Nike, allowing users to try on Air Force 1s with a cool filter. TikTok recently released a feature together with Shopify that allows users to shop directly from videos and retailer profiles. YouTube has a livestream shopping feature and Instagram is allowing brands to create unique experiences like make-up try-ons using augmented reality. 

So what kinds of experiences are brands creating?

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IKEA recently created an AR escape room with shoppable items, challenging users to redesign and declutter a room, while encouraging them to purchase the products and furniture. On Instagram, Lancome had a virtual try-on for one of its lipstick lines, asking users to experiment and try on its 20 shades of lipstick. All of these features are made possible through Snapchat’s Lens Studio, which is currently the leader in allowing brands to create powerful AR shopping experiences.

This is all about to change as Meta invests more in AR and VR technology through the in to the metaverse, so while Snapchat may lead the AR shopping game at the moment, other social networks like Instagram, TikTok and Facebook aren’t far behind.