Research Outline

AR & VR in Retail eCommerce


The goal of this research is to find prominent examples of brands who have adopted augmented reality/virtual reality for enhancing in-store/e-commerce experience in retail. This research is to gain an understanding of the innovations that are progressing either in-market or concept phase to inform a view on what can be achieved in 3 years.

Early Findings

Our background research about the topic unveiled the following information:


  • Brands like lowe have been partnering with some of the biggest tech giants like Google to provide the best possible customer experience by integrating advanced AR technology into the usual retail process. Lowe has developed an in-store AR navigation system for improving the customer experience, and that is not all, it also has an in-house product, which helps the "users to create shopping lists in the app, which will then guide them through the store using the quickest route possible."
  • Toys "R" Us has introduced an application, where children (who are the end-users of their product) "can unlock AR-enabled activities, and the mascot Geoffrey even comes to life, bringing the brand back into the experience."
  • Amazon is another key player in the industry, which is actively incorporating AR and other technologies to enhance the overall customer experience. The giant was recently granted a patent for its “blended-reality mirror"; this mirror will be used to offer virtual changing rooms.
  • American Apparel has introduced an AR-powered app, which helps customers with their in-store experience, they can scan in-store signage and displays, scroll through product details, and other informative sections like customer reviews, color variants, and pricing.
  • Lacoste also launched its application; it facilitates the consumers with an opportunity of trying shoes virtually, and it also offers AR experiences with window displays, in-store signage, and promotional postcards.
  • The Shoe Sampler app from Converse also offers a virtual shoe buying experience.
  • IKEA is another brand that has been an early adaptor of AR technology, and it has used the technology to "bridge the gap between the customer’s perceptions and the reality of the products." IKEA's mobile application used "AR to overlay 3D models of IKEA’s products on the real-time feed of the camera, pointed out where the customer wants their furniture to be placed."


  • Nearly 61% of customers chose shops that offer AR technology over normal shops.
  • "71% of customers would shop more often at a retail store if they offered AR technology."
  • 40% of people have shown a willingness to pay more for a product, "if they could experience it with the help of augmented reality."