Jul 02, 2020

Augmented reality is quickly becoming a new trend in the e-commerce space.

Businesses have started to look at alternative ways to create an immersive shopping experience by providing shoppers with a new way to get a feel for a product before they make a purchase.

What is augmented reality?

Augmented reality (AR) is a technology that provides an interactive experience of a real-world environment on a digital platform. This enhanced computer-generated perceptual information allows for digital users to experience real-life through the medium of digital platforms more than ever before.

AR can include visual as well as auditory effects to make the experience as real as possible. An example of AR in the digital space would be product testing on the IKEA website.

Their AR software allows consumers to test and fit every product they sell in the consumer’s actual home to give them a real-life preview before they make a purchase.

How to apply it to e-Commerce?

Augmented reality provides customers with a better sense of whether a product would be suitable for their needs or not. Many e-commerce businesses have already started to use AR in order to provide their consumers with more confidence when making a purchase.


IKEA is one of the first large global e-commerce retailers to capitalise on the use of AR. Their AR software allows consumers to preview products and how they would fit in their actual homes.

The application is simple. With a tap into a smartphone’s camera, the consumer can preview and place different pieces of furniture in real-time from anywhere in the world. The software will then render a 3D picture of the furniture in the given space. The consumer can then decide if the product is a good fit or not.

This fantastic feature that AR offers is revolutionising IKEA’s UX design and potential for revenue and limiting product returns. This especially applies to their high-ticket products like kitchen designs which will convert a lot better once a consumer can see what the product would look like in real life.


The recently established American based beauty brand CoverGirl has been quick to jump on the trend and provide an AR product experience to their customers. Similar to IKEA, shoppers can apply beauty products over a live image of their face on camera and see if a particular make-up product is the right match for them.

Through the use of AR, the brand enabled consumers to try all different kinds of makeup combinations without spending a dollar or consumers having a negative brand experience due to ordering an unsuitable product.

What are the benefits for the shoppers?

After all, it is important to remember that a customer cannot try on a product on the internet and so, a creative UX/UI design strategy is crucial as they most often need to go with their intuition and believe that it is exactly what they are looking for.

Adequate product preview

Everyone has had an experience where you order a product that looks nice on images but is nothing like the images in real life.

With AR, customers will be able to preview a product from all angles just like they would in a retail shop. This will allow the consumer to preview a product in a similar to a real-life environment before they decide whether a product is good for them or not.

Testing and fitting a product

IKEA is one of the largest e-commerce distributors across Europe for furniture and home décor. They currently use AR on their website to give customers a preview of their products and what they would look like in their actual homes.

Augmented reality is a remarkable digital technology that has allowed businesses like IKEA and CoverGirl to revolutionise their UX design and offer consumers a new way to experience their products. With this change in digital technology, consumers are going to be more satisfied and businesses will experience a lot fewer returns or product exchanges.