In engineering terms, furniture modeling stands for the 3D model of furniture, which is not only structurally accurate but also portrays the visual side of the product. The real-world utility of furniture modeling is to see the home/office furniture in three-dimensional shape and compare different colors and textures for the same design. Moreover, as furniture designing starts with visualization of finished products, 3D CAD models of furniture give the factual shape to the concept design.
As more and more consumers are moving online, like books, electronics, and groceries, e-commerce space has also started listing furniture at their core. However, unlike books and grocery products, where buyers don't really need to touch and feel the product, in case of furniture, people want to experience the feel before buying. And there comes, the integration of Augmentation Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) technologies for a shop-like buying experience of furniture.
How AR and VR Help Influence Furniture Buying Experience
According to a study by IBISWorld, a whopping 15% of the US furniture industry that worth around $70 billion has moved online. As a retailer, marketer, and shopper, we have come a long way from the days when it was an innovative marketing strategy to circulate flyers and do door step product demos. Day to day life becoming more busier, a significant percentage of consumers have changed the way they shop and so are the marketing campaigns. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are giving more strength to this change by providing a virtual experience of the real products.
3D CAD Furniture Modeling Started It All
The furniture business had always the challenge of showcasing products and pricing the goods based on complex artwork. It was difficult for manufacturers and sellers to build furniture of every design, especially with small but significant visual changes. With the invent of 3D modeling technology, it became easier for the manufacturers to visualize the concept designs and make necessary adjustments without even manufacturing a single unit. 3D CAD furniture modeling enabled furniture designers to experiment as many as changes it takes to build a product that fits the need and choice of the consumers.
AR and VR for the Furniture Sellers' Rescue
Then came the challenge of showcasing variety of furniture designs in stores or online portals. Every buyer has their own liking and need when they come for furniture shopping. It seems that the store sellers have a little advantage of showcasing at least the physical products so that consumers can experience the look and feel. However, at the same time, it was quite impossible to accommodate products of each brand and every design in store.
With the help of Virtual Reality headsets, furniture retailers are in a better position to showcase the design variations of a product. When consumers can look the sample furniture of brands, they can compare variations in color, texture, and design in other similar products by wearing the VR headset. Seems amazing - isn't it?
Augmented Reality to Go One Step Ahead
Statistics by Manatt Digital Media show that AR will generate close to $120 billion by 2020 and certainly, retail will push a significant contribution. For e-commerce business houses, impressing consumers is even tougher than the stores. While shopping online, consumers usually have the doubt on the real look and feel of furniture, which is now addressed through AR enabled applications.
With numerous AR enabled apps available on phones as well as computers, consumers now can see the three-dimensional look of a variety of furniture at the convenience of their homes. With AR, mobile devices have become virtual furniture super marts where retailers showcase their entire catalog containing thousands of products at one place. According to the study conducted by Centric Digital, furniture tops the list of products available on e-commerce portals that consumers want to buy using Augmented Reality technology.
Benefits of Augmented Reality for Marketers and Manufactures
Augmented and Virtual Reality integrating 3D CAD furniture modeling brings lots of benefits for furniture manufacturers as well as retailers. Some of the key benefits can be listed as below
How Augmented Reality in Furniture Works
AR creates a virtual environment that overlays animated objects on the real world surroundings to give a store-like buying experience. VR and AR utilize the real surrounding naturally integrating digital media like images, video, and music. You might be surprised to know that - according to a survey, around 71% of consumers agreed to make their product purchasing decisions after experiencing through AR platforms.
There are a number of AR-powered applications currently available in the market. These apps usually fall into two basic categories, such as - Location based and Marketer based. Some of the leading Augmented Reality-enabled furniture apps are as follows
Houzz Offering a catalog full of home decor, furniture selection, and renovation ideas, this wonderful AR-enabled application lists over 5 million home interior images for a great experience.
IKEA Place With awesome UX experience and high-fidelity 3D models of home accessories, the app provides around 2000 images of sophisticated furniture to choose from.
Homestyler With highly-responsive 3D models of furniture and other home decors, the application offers a lot of options to choose from and design home, office, or retail space in 3D.
DecorMatters Along with features like AR ruler, this app provides an incredible collection of interior design elements and brands like Living Space, West Elm, etc. to try and purchase.
Wayfair From a leading home decor and furniture retailer in the US, this application leverages the most advanced AR elements to showcase 3D furniture models that you can experience in real environment.
Disruption in the Furniture Industry with AR and VR
Another popular survey by Centric Digital has revealed that around 40% of the respondents have agreed to buy more expensive products if experienced through Augmented and Virtual Reality. Isn't it something that is opening up a new era of technology enabled manufacturing, marketing, and shopping of furniture?
The 3D CAD furniture modeling experts at eLogicTech have been leveraging AR and VR since their inception and have assisted numerous clients with their new-age furniture design/manufacturing/marketing endeavors. So, if you are planning to explore AR integration into your furniture business, do contact us - we've a lot to add.