How Much Does It Cost to Open a Virtual Reality Store? ( And Why Do You Need it Anyway?)
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How Much Does It Cost to Open a Virtual Reality Store? ( And Why Do You Need it Anyway?)


Let’s admit it, we live in the age of consumerism. Subconsciously and consciously we read each other looking at the labels on the clothes and apples on the gadgets. But one thing has changed: we are not WHAT we buy anymore, we are HOW we buy. Those who know how to buy the most exclusive stuff with the most comfort and even satisfaction are the winners.

That’s why virtual reality store for retail is gaining popularity. It has everything shoppers need.

Convenient, experiential, and positive shopping has become a top priority for modern buyers. You see, the concept of shopping was evolving the fastest during the last several hundreds of years. It all started with bazaars, like the huge bazaar of Istanbul which could serve 250.000-400.00 visitors a day.


How Did this Shopping Evolution End?


And  it  ended with virtual reality stores in which millions of buyers from all over the world can take a look at 100% realistic 3D models of the goods they will buy. These virtual reality stores are limitless in terms of customer service.

Why was this evolution inevitable? Because shopping is a big, even the biggest part of our life. No, sometimes it can take 10 minutes to buy a new watch and  5 hours to buy a new car. But this time spent on shopping feels like catharsis after days or even years of working and saving.

 But does online shopping make us super lazy (No!) ?

Companies that know that we want more comfort earn the most. They say that we don’t want to get out of cars sometimes that’s how McDonalds earning billions selling through McDrive. That’s how Ikea hit the market creating the app that allows trying the furniture in your apartment (yes, without the need of walking to a shopping mall).

So are we getting super lazy? Not necessarily, most likely we are getting busier and more overwhelmed with the flow of the information. We travel more, go in for sports more, and communicate online more. It's the age of Big Data. That is why we need the shopping that will relieve us from stress instead of creating a new purpose for a splitting headache.




Big Data  is very challenging: we face so much information that it’s getting really difficult to process it and make conclusions out of it.

We all have access to millions of goods today. We all can order hand-made silk blouse directly from Vietnam and drive the car assembled in Japan. Without the necessity of visiting those two countries. We all know that the best books are on Amazon, and the best crafted goods are on Etsy. It’s default knowledge.

We recommend nice online shops to each other: “I’ve ordered a state of art furniture from this online shop and it was delivered so quickly!” And businesses are ready to go broke to provide clients with the most personalized, the most comfortable, and the most mind-shattering experience.  

That's why a virtual reality store is the ultimate solution for modern businesses. It’s the store where you need to be if you want the best shopping for today.  We think that in the age when people work too much and are overwhelmed with the information they deserve more effective shopping. 


So Why Don’t WeBuy Using AR/VR So Much?


There are several reasons why shopping in VR/AR are not as popular today as they could be according to the Next Web.

First, as for VR, the headsets are actually not as affordable as they could be. They cost too much for common people like you and me. And in many cases, people don’t know a lot about their applications except for gaming (yet VR has incredibly useful applications in education, medicine, manufacture).

Second, the quality of graphics in VR shopping is often far from satisfactory. But even leaving aside poor graphics and high level of latency, virtual shopping lack one essential feature- empowering data for making final decisions. In most cases it means exclusion of irrelevant data and inclusion of accurate and 100% trustworthy information.

 Do you see what I mean?

Take a look at Macy’s virtual store created for Asian market. Shopping experience looks emotional, full of colors, yet it lacks some core features. It seems that the shopper is distracted all the time because UI/UX of the application is too puzzling.


That’s why we’ve decided to create an augmented reality app  that could serve as a virtual reality store and could give clients really comfortable and effective level of shopping. And it is accessible for any user with iPhone or Android. No headsets are required. 

This virtual reality store was created for one of the biggest home appliance retailers in Ukraine -Allo.  The store that could be open 24 hours a day and can be visited from any place of the world. More than that, it can provide potential clients with 100% reliable information about home appliances.

We’ve discovered that this is the level of shopping clients need today.



Actually, we knew that this virtual reality store would work. Before investing all the time and efforts into a new AR app, we’ve decided to build a prototype so the company could test it on real clients. It was crucial to understand if buyers are ready to shop for home appliances in a virtual environment. It was vital to see their emotional reactions as well.

Because the new stage of the shopping evolution is all about comfort and WOW effect. 

Actually, creating a prototype for marketing research is an important strategic decision. In a prototype app there were only 35 home appliances but that was enough. It was shown to common Allo customers and it turned out that people were excited and curious about it.

It produced real WOW effect! People were smiling, joking, and buying! But the best part about this innovative reality store is that 3D models of the goods are 100% realistic. All the details, scratches and hues are preserved to deprive a shopper from buyer's remorse. 


What Do you Need to Open a Virtual Reality Store?


You need a skillful UI/UX designer, an experienced developer, and a talented 3D modeler. The price of the application will depend on the number of hours they will need to spend on this AR app.


UI/UX  designer creates the first concept  of the whole application. It’s the person who know sthe answer to the question “ How will this virtual reality store look like?”

He creates the idea of the store that can be implemented into reality. Later it’s the person who will make sure that the user will reach his/her goal ( which is purchase) in a virtual world full of goods and products.

Maps, plates, arrows, names: all the visual information assists a user during his/her buyer’s journey. Sometimes, a UI/UX can add textual information to alleviate the process of purchase.

If you feel as natural in the virtual world as in real, if you can move through a virtual store intuitively and the only feeling you have is excitement- it means UI/UX worked well.

 UI/UX designer time will spend 10-100 hours depending on the complexity of the virtual reality store.


That’s the key player of the work on the development of augmented reality experience for shopping. Unity developer assesses the mechanics,  the logic, and the complexity of the implementation of the idea into reality. Extension of the app architecture is also evaluated.  If the app doesn’t need plugins, additional servers, it can be created faster. Having analyzed all this information, a unity developer can understand the time he/she will spend building this AR app.

 Do you need to support this app, extend it? Do you need a “box solution” - a ready-made kit? Then it will require additional hours, of course. In some cases, a Unity developer creates animation and audio for the application if it’s not offered by a customer.

 In other words, the number of hours will depend on the environment you want, the functionality you  expect and the number of  3D models, for sure.

 Unity developer time can spend 50 -100 hours depending on the complexity of architecture of the virtual reality store.


The price for the virtual store will largely depend on the number of goods you want to sell there. Each product, regardless of its type (it can be a piece of home appliances, a piece furniture or clothes) will require 3D modeling.

What is 3D Modeling? It is creation of a virtual models of physical objects so that the could be observed from different perspectives.

 The more details and curves the object has, the more hours a 3D modeler will need to spend creating it from the scratch.  

The number of  hours 3D modelers will spend depends on the number of 3D models: 10-1000000 hours. If you want 1000000 goods, of course. 


Is 3D Modeling a Future of E-commerce?


Actually, specialists  predict that 3D modeling will become very important for the future of online communication and e- commerce. Most probably all internet shops will have 3D models of the products painted in 3D.

Several weeks ago Facebook has announced that it would allow all 3D painters create 3D models and share them in a news feed. For Facebook, it’s the natural evolution of the communication: photos and videos wil be substituted with 3D models integrated in VR/AR.

Some companies are offering their clients to create prospective 3D models that can be later transformed into shoes for example. So you still don’t have 3D models of your products that people can send to each other in social network with 2 bln users? Well, you`re obviously lagging behind Amazon, Lego, and Allo.


So is Virtual Reality Store REALLY Worth It?


A virtual reality store software is the investment into the future. It's the adaptation to the needs of customers who demand more personalized, more WOW-provoking and more comfortable shopping.  Can pay enough to provide your clients with the ultimate comfort?

If you think it's the reasonable investment, you must know that the price of the virtual reality store software will depend on its architecture and complexity, the number of 3Dmodels you want, and the level of expandability.  And of course, the price will largely depend on the deadline you set for your virtual reality store. Deadline is the key. 

So you see, virtual reality store application is quite easy to create if you know the exact recipe. Yet the effect of this store can be literally amazing: a door to the new dimension with the LIMITLESS number of goods. Can you imagine that? We can not only imagine that  - we can do it.  

06.04.2018, 12:48

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