Here's How Marxent Labs is Helping Visual Commerce Look Farther than Pinterest and Instagram
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Visual commerce has been growing in popularity thanks to social media platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram. However, Marxent Labs is taking things even further than the obvious choices.
Augmented and virtual reality innovators, Marxent Labs was founded by brothers Beck and Barry Besecker. Beck had spent 13 years building interactive marketing solutions for some of the world's biggest brands (such as Target and Tesco), and Barry had ten years' experience developing software, web platforms, and solutions for content management. After starting Marxent Labs, they gained a reputation for their impressive suite of augmented and virtual reality applications.
Today, Marxent Labs' technology is employed by several household names. The company has also been lauded as being a great place to work, as well as winning recognition for its company culture in 2017.
A Brief History of Visual Commerce
Once upon a time, when the internet was young, the term 'visual commerce' was used to describe simple image-based shopping and search. Many years later, it started to be applied to the sales and marketing activities taking place on platforms like Pinterest and Instagram, as companies began to use them as more than just an online showroom for their products, but also as a way of connecting with their audiences and driving engagement and direct sales.
Since then, the field of visual commerce has diversified to cover everything from using innovative visuals and video experiences to drive in-store purchasing decisions, to user-generated content and analytics.
However - and this is where Marxent Labs comes in - it can also be applied to virtual and augmented reality technology, and the ways in which that technology can drive new and exciting shopping experiences for consumers.
"We're in the early days of the Augmented Reality revolution," said Marxent Labs' Senior Content Strategist, Joe Bardi. "Public awareness is on the rise and a new generation of devices and software are now hitting the hands of consumers, who in turn will demand merchants use these tools as part of the sales process. Until recently, AR retail implementations had been simple, single-product visualizations. But much like early ecommerce implementations would pale in comparison with current offerings from Amazon, AR campaigns are set to quickly morph from high-tech marketing efforts into full-service shopping experiences."
VisualCommerce(tm) 3D Virtual Reality Design Studio and Showroom
Marxent developed its proprietary visual commerce platform in conjunction with Samsung virtual reality hardware to offer its clients a software as service (SaaS) solution for their product catalogues.
(Video source: marxentlabs.com)
With VisualCommerce(tm) 3D Virtual Reality Design Studio and Showroom, customers can access entire 3D product inventories, and then configure them with real-world environments. So far, Marxent has mainly found success applying this technology to furniture and home improvements retailers. With Marxent Labs' technology, consumers can view how products will look in their own homes. Purchasing furniture represents a significant financial investment for consumers, so any technology which allows them to remove some of the guesswork is welcomed with open arms.
"Applications like the Ashley HomeStore mobile app and Ikea Place are putting powerful visualization tools in the hands of users, allowing customers to bring the showroom to their living room with stunning realism and detail," said Bardi. "These apps go beyond show and tell, and work to create a cohesive experience that takes shoppers from browse to buy, improves the overall shopping experience, builds brand loyalty and increases customer satisfaction."
Marxent Labs' VisualCommerce(tm) 3D Virtual Reality Design Studio and Showroom technology can already be found employed by several household names, including Lowe's, Ashley Furniture, La-Z-Boy, Target, and Macy's, and it will be exciting to see what applications can be found for the technology in other markets in the future.
The final word goes to Joe Bardi. "It's a brave new world for retailers scrambling to keep up with the pace of change. Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are infiltrating the mainstream, and merchants are experimenting with new technologies to see how to best leverage them to grow profits and the customer base while also improving the shopping experience. We're still in the infancy of this retail tech revolution, but as more customers become familiar with technologies like AR, they are going to demand retailers provide shopping experiences that includes them."
Visual commerce is set to be a hot topic at Future Stores West 2018 this June at the Sheraton Seattle, WA.
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