How Better Product Visuals Reduce The Risk Of Returns

Posted on August 31st, 2022

This is a trend that has been noticed, especially during and after the pandemic. Shoppers have been leaning a lot more towards 3D product visualizations because they offer them a better view of the product. These representations are very close to the actual item that they want to purchase. They are better than two-dimensional pictures and the viewers don’t have to go through those long descriptions to understand the various features of their purchase.

This interim introduction to 3D product visualization, configurators, and a more interactive representation of various offerings in the market exposed your prospects to a better way to shop. Now, the only thing that they crave is this otherwise they just don’t feel connected with the product. This has resulted in several furniture brands, fashion apparel manufacturers, makeup retailers, and many popular names in various sectors diversifying into 3D re-imagining of their offerings. It has made it possible for numerous businesses to reduce their returns and exchanges by nearly 35%. The question you need to ask here is why people return products in the first place.

Maybe Because…

  • They don’t need the product anymore
  • The product doesn’t match the website description
  • It does not meet customer expectations
  • The wrong product or wrong size got shipped to the consumer
  • It was probably a gift purchase and the recipient did not like it

The Clear Impact Of Returns On Manufacturers, Retailers, And E-Commerce Players

  • The company has to bear the cost of lost sales
  • There is also a considerable cost associated with accepting refunds and replacements
  • The cost associated with postage and courier are also significant
  • Any return is going to have a reduced margin
  • There is also a probability that the returns product goes out of season and becomes unsaleable
  • The item in question may get damaged when in transit to the retailer
  • There is a significant investment in human resources that deals with these returns and replacements
  • The risk of brand damage is always there in case of increased returns and exchanges

The reasons could be many but the solution is only one which is better imagery, impressive visuals, high-resolution pictures, and also three-dimensional representations of your products.

3D Tech And World Ecommerce Players – What Makes This Technology Resonate With Everyone

Clothing lines, footwear, and furniture brands were the first to enter the 3D modeling regime because of the obvious reasons that are aware to a lot of people today. According to a survey by Barclaycard, shoes and clothing are two of the most frequently returned items making for almost 56% of all returns that happen on the internet today. Close to 57% of retailers today say that returns hurt their operations. Also, more than 20% of retailers claim to have increased their prices to cover such costs. This does not play out well, especially for the customer. It also impacts negatively on the reputation of the retailer and eventually the manufacturer. But a decent investment in 3D technology can control this tide of returns and exchange that has taken over the online retail sector.

With the advent of 3D, AR, and VR tools, your customers can now manipulate your products in their 3D form and project them in their own environment. For example, the 3D-AR feature of the Amazon app allows its users to project some of its products in their real environment to test their size, proportions, suitability, and features before they purchase them.

According to a Harris Poll survey, close to 60% of people who participated in it are more likely to make a purchase online if they get a chance to try it out through 3D or AR visuals. The point is that the user today isn’t solely inclined towards using 3D but also favors realism in imagery. The depiction of the product should be impressive enough to inspire a purchase.

Let’s Have A Look At A Few Statistics

According to Shopify, e-Commerce returns have increased over the past few years, especially in comparison to physical retailers

  • The average return rate for brick-and-mortar stores is somewhere between 8% and 10%
  • The same cannot be said about E-Commerce stores because the figure here is close to 20%
  • When you look at holiday e-Commerce, the return rate is somewhere close to 30%
  • Expensive products have a more staggering return rate of more than 49%

Gaining A Competitive Edge – What 3D And Impressive Imagery Can Do For Your Business

Retailers, manufacturers, fashion brands, big names in the furniture industry, and makeup and accessories retailers are currently depending a lot on 3D technology. Experts have predicted that 3D simulations along with VR and AR capabilities are going to take over the e-Commerce sector by the end of 2023. According to the same Harris Poll survey, nearly 42% of shoppers are willing to pay more for a particular item if they get to experience it in 3D and augmented reality apps. Also, they are willing to pay at least 20% more for a personalized product. It is safe to say that better product visuals don’t just reduce the risks of returns and exchanges but also improve your sales tremendously. 

  1. Better Visuals, Impressive Angles, More Sales, Less Returns

People talk a lot about photo realism. This essentially means several media such as painting, drawing, graphic media, digital paints, and other mediums combined to come up with a realistic and beautiful representation of a product that your customer might be interested in. This is where high-resolution 2D digital painting capabilities and also 3D interactive imagery come into play. You can either invest in a mix of both or perhaps just the ultra-modern 3D visualization that has not only become highly affordable but faster and more efficient as well.

  1. Interactive 3D Assets

When we talk about interactive 3D imagery and assets, we can imagine a 3D product configurator that allows your users to make changes to your products in real time just by visiting your website and clicking on a few buttons. These three-dimensional configurators can be easily embedded into your home page or even beside the product description. They allow your prospects to view and edit your offerings from every possible angle. They can manipulate the size, replace components, change their textures, switch from various color options, and add any changes to the product as per their liking, making for a highly personalized shopping experience.

  1. Support For AR And VR Capabilities

These same 3D assets have a lot of capabilities because they can be manipulated through AR apps and VR gadgets. These can be deployed on practically any platform making them highly interactive and satisfying for your prospects. For example, just by using your proprietary 3D asset and smartphone camera, they can project your lamp, sofa set, bed frame, or chair onto their real environment and re-imagine their space with minimal effort.

  1. Detailed Product Depiction For More Engagement

Let’s say that you do not wish to go with any of the above features. You can go with a high-resolution depiction of your product instead. Just a high-quality render of your 3D visualization can give a better experience to your users. This is still going to hold a lot of relevance and get you more traction with your audience, especially the section that has not tasted the many benefits of shopping using 3D configurators.

To Sum It Up

The days of long product descriptions and monologues have gone. Now you can attract and engage your audience with universal, highly compatible, and easily deployable 3D representations of your products. The bottom line is to present your prospects with such imagery and visuals that they cannot help but click on the purchase button.