We are all familiar with the explosion of online shopping. Brace yourself: We are on the forefront of the next disruptive change in online shopping. Virtual Reality (VR) is about to change the entire online shopping experience. We’ll give you a glimpse into what is about to unfold.
Online shopping is already super convenient. From your mobile phone or your home computer it is possible to buy just about anything online in a matter of minutes and have it delivered to your door in a few days, often with free shipping. Now, online retailer EBay is attempting to create an entirely new experience for online shoppers. EBay has partnered with Australian retailer Myer to create the world’s first virtual reality department store. Through this new online experience, consumers can browse various product collections in departments such as home goods, electronics and clothing as if they were actually in the store. Check out the Youtube video below to learn more about the virtual reality department store.
If you want to experience it for yourself, you can download the app and use a headset like Google Cardboard the Samsung Gear.
To promote the launch of the new VR store, EBay and Myer gave away over 15,000 Google-branded cardboard headset which they referred to as “Shopticals.” If you missed out on a free pair of “Shopticals”, you can purchase a pair for only $5.95.
With Myer’s new VR store, shoppers can browse more than 12,500 products and then check out using eBay’s Sight Search technology. Instead of being overwhelmed by all of the store’s products at once, shoppers can customize their shopping experience by selecting only those categories of products that are of interest to them. In addition, the shopping experience improves over time as Sight Search learns about each shopper’s individual preferences.
When a shopper decides to purchase a product, he or she can place it into a virtual shopping cart. However, to make a payment, the shopper needs to leave the Virtual Reality store and return to the eBay app. Future versions will likely have an integrated payment capability.
Although we are still in the early stages of Virtual Reality online shopping, it is easy to see the potential transformative impact that this technology can have on the shopping experience.