A new Pinterest feature will allow consumers to see what furniture or other decor items in their own home will look like using augmented reality (AR). Similar technology has already been implemented by major retailers such as Amazon, IKEA or Wayfair, as well as others in the home design space, like houzz. In the case of Pinterest, it is working with a select group of US retailers, including Crate & Barrel, Walmart, West Elm and Wayfair, to allow online shoppers to virtually place items in their home using the Pinterest app’s “Lens camera”. If the user likes what they see, they can buy the item directly from the retailer.
This virtual shopping experience for home decor is rolling out in the US to over 80,000 shoppable Pins, making it Pinterest’s biggest AR shopping investment to date.
It’s also the third “Try It Out” product that Pinterest has launched in the past two years. Their first efforts were in the beauty market, with Try On features that allowed consumers to virtually try different shades of lipstick and eyeshadows, totaling 14,000 purchasable Pins. Pinterest had not yet worked with placing items directly in a room, that is, only on users’ faces. While not quite the same technology as before, all of Pinterest’s Try On experiences have the same goal of turning product inspiration into shopping.
To use the feature on iOS or Android, users in the US can click Home Decor Pins Supported and click “Try it in your space” to view the virtual product through the camera lens. Users can adjust the product in their own space and browse product information including pricing. To purchase, simply click the Pin again to be taken to the checkout page on the retailer’s website.
This attempt to channel consumers’ more casual browsing into retail transactions has been Pinterest’s biggest focus over the years. But the company has been slow to adapt to a number of market changes, including switching from still images to videos as shopping inspiration, for example – at least until more recently. Last year, the company belatedly entered this space with the launch of its first video product, Idea Pins, and has since invested in creative tools that would allow online influencers to cash in on their content.
Pinterest is also clearly not the first to market with its new AR feature for furniture and decor shopping. But the AR shopping market is still early days. Here, early adoption was limited by the tools available to AR developers such as Apple. ARKit, which has steadily improved over time to make the end-user experience less cumbersome and clunky. And app makers are still figuring out how to make AR shopping appealing to consumers. Last week, for example, Snapchat updated its own AR capabilities, which now include a shopping lens that allows consumers to browse multiple products in one place with real-time pricing.
While some of the early experiments in AR shopping felt more enigmatic, there are some indications that using AR can help retailers increase conversions when done right. And there may be some consumer demand for this type of experience. For example, a Google search 2019 data indicated consumer interest in AR, with 66% of people saying they wanted to use AR to help with shopping. But real-world research and conversion data has been more limited. However, the Shopify e-commerce platform shared that merchants who were adding 3D content to their stores were seeing a 94% conversion increase on average, citing their own internal data. And some merchants who used 3D models in AR increased conversion rates by up to 250%, Shopify said. also cited Vertebrae’s 2020 Survey who found that conversion rates increase by 90% for customers who engage with AR, compared to those who don’t.
Meanwhile, Pinterest has observed that its own users are 5 times more likely to buy from a “Try It” enabled Pin than a standard Pin. He also said that home decor is the top category on his website, with 3.37 billion search clicks in 2021. This makes this latest AR initiative with a potentially larger audience than its AR beauty shopping resources. . The company touted its visual search feature, where usage increased 126% year-over-year, but offered no hard numbers in terms of total searches.
“Since the start of the pandemic, we are seeing more digitally savvy shoppers than ever before, as millions of people now expect virtual and mobile options to try before they buy, see personalized recommendations and gather information as part of their decision-making process. decision. ,” Jeremy King, senior vice president of engineering at Pinterest, said in an announcement. “These behaviors are happening on Pinterest every day, which is why we continue to advance technologies like AR Try On and make Pinterest a full-funnel shopping destination that takes people from inspiration to purchase anywhere in the app.”
The company told Ploonge that it is currently not monetizing its AR shopping feature. But its retail partners in the efforts are brands that have already seen the success of organic and paid advertising on Pinterest and are now leveraging another way to let consumers discover products organically.
The AR shopping feature is US-only for iOS and Android at launch, but will roll out to global markets later, Pinterest said.