While the media has generally been focusing on the gaming and experience aspects of virtual reality, the benefits that the technology could have on the business space, particularly in retail, could be quite staggering and underestimated. We have already seen stores such as Home Depot and Lowes adopt VR in order to enhance their customers’ buying experience, but today it’s been revealed that the office supply retail chain, Office Depot, will be adopting the technology as a means to better manage their product placement and customer experience.
Today the office supply giant announced that they will be utilizing the ShopperMX online 3D VR platform from InContext Solutions, as a way to better organize merchandise within their stores and cater to customer in a more efficient and lucrative manner. ShopperMX will allow the company to simulate merchandise placement as well as new, innovative store concepts in hyperrealistic virtual reality. ShopperMX will also permit company executives to bring new retail concepts to market in a much faster manner, while providing the company with key analytics to make sure that these new concepts are outperforming past concepts.
“Virtual reality will allow us the convenience and simplify the process of creating and testing concepts that resonate with shoppers,” said Stephanie Gutierrez, VP of marketing, Office Depot. “With ShopperMX, Office Depot is investing in virtual reality technology as a priority to continue to innovate while better anticipating customer needs.”
While this use of virtual reality will stray from that of other retail chains such as Lowes, who is utilizing Microsoft’s augmented reality device, the HoloLens, as a way for customers to better visualize and interact with home improvement ideas, it’s internal uses of the technology like this which could drive the industry significantly further moving forward. I’m sure we will see the ShopperMX platform adopted by many other retail chains and private retail stores worldwide as the value of the technology is better understood.
Let’s hear your thoughts on this latest use of virtual reality within the retail space in the Office Depot VR forum on VRTalk.com. Be sure to check out the videos below highlighting the usefulness of the ShopperMX platform.