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Spatial Commerce: The Future of Shopping

Imagine entering a world where your shopping transcends traditional store boundaries, allowing you to explore products in exquisite detail without leaving your home. This is the future of retail, known as Spatial Commerce. Utilising Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR), this innovative approach creates immersive shopping experiences that merge digital and physical realms. But what is Spatial Commerce exactly, and how will it transform our shopping habits? Let’s explore further.


The Essence of Spatial Commerce

Spatial commerce employs Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) to craft immersive shopping experiences that blend the physical and digital realms. Essentially, Spatial Commerce aims to reshape the retail landscape with AR and VR technologies. It focuses on offering consumers an engaging experience, improving their capability to visualise products within real-world settings and making the shopping process more interactive. With the introduction of wearable technologies such as Apple’s Vision Pro, we are on the verge of making this innovative approach more accessible to a wider audience, heralding a new phase in retail and commerce.


Why Spatial Commerce? Why Now? 

Just as smartphones have become integral to our daily lives, Spatial Commerce is emerging as the new frontier in shopping. However, unlike the limited two-dimensional view offered by smartphones, Spatial Commerce introduces a three-dimensional, interactive experience. This evolution is not merely technological; it responds to the changing expectations of consumers, especially Gen Z, who are increasingly interested in AR and VR technologies. The high pre-order numbers for devices like the Vision Pro highlight the rising consumer demand for immersive technology.

As these immersive experiences gain popularity, we can expect more consumers to be drawn to owning wearable tech. This trend creates opportunities for businesses to develop even more innovative and customised services.

Consider, for example, the concept of virtual personal shoppers and stylists. Utilising a customer’s previous purchases and preferences, these virtual assistants can offer personalised selections and guide users through immersive product experiences tailored to their tastes. This method could significantly enhance the product discovery process, meeting the high expectations of today’s consumers.

With the growing use of spatial experience wearables, these devices could soon become a key tool for attracting new customers.


Use Cases that Paint a Picture

Imagine being able to virtually try on the newest fashion trends, or effortlessly designing your dream kitchen in stunning 3D, with just a few clicks and swipes. Or envision first-class passengers experiencing immersive in-flight shopping and entertainment. These aren't mere fantasies; they're real possibilities enabled by Spatial Commerce. Brands that embrace this technology can deliver unprecedented, loyalty-enhancing experiences once deemed unattainable.

  • For Retailers: Spatial commerce paves the way for creating immersive social shopping experiences. Many Gen Z consumers admit their purchasing decisions are influenced by social media. The next step in this evolution could be immersive social commerce, allowing people to shop in a virtual space with friends and family.
  • Home Improvement: There are apps enabling customers to design and visualise room renovations in immersive 3D, making planning more interactive and merging the physical and digital worlds in the process.
  • For Fitness Enthusiasts: Picture virtual try-ons for the latest athletic wear or engaging in workouts led by virtual trainers in an immersive setting.
  • Events and Travel: Planning weddings or vacations could be enhanced with virtual experiences, providing a sneak peek of what's to come and making the decision-making process more interactive and enjoyable.


The Challenge of Adoption

While Spatial Commerce holds immense promise, its widespread success depends on overcoming significant obstacles, particularly the cost and accessibility of AR/VR devices. The steep prices of cutting-edge technology can confine the immersive experience to a select few, limiting broader adoption. Yet, as technology progresses and becomes more affordable, Spatial Commerce is expected to follow the path of smartphones and other technological advances, becoming more accessible to a wider audience.


Strategies for Businesses

In the emerging world of Spatial Commerce, businesses must employ creative strategies to attract and retain customers in this novel digital environment.

  • Invest in Content Creation: Creating immersive, high-quality content is crucial. This involves developing 3D models of products and interactive experiences that faithfully represent products, aiming to make online shopping as tangible as shopping in person. Brands must also plan for the production of immersive 3D content that is compatible and functions well across various headsets. Furthermore, interactive visuals will become increasingly important in captivating customers.
  • Focus on Personalization: Using data to offer personalised shopping experiences can greatly boost customer engagement. Envision AR experiences customised to individual tastes, making suggestions based on previous interactions and preferences.
  • Embrace Omnichannel Integration: Incorporating Spatial Commerce into a wider omnichannel strategy ensures a unified customer experience. This approach connects virtual experiences with physical stores, online platforms, and social media, offering a smooth transition across different shopping methods.
  • Location-based Marketing: Concentrating on location-specific promotions and partnering for shopping event promotions helps bridge the virtual and physical shopping worlds. This strategy motivates customers from a virtual environment to visit nearby physical stores, fostering a consistent retail experience. To activate these promotions and marketing campaigns, a thorough strategy for cross-platform content creation is key, ensuring a unified and compelling message across all customer interactions and narrowing the gap between the digital and physical realms.
  • Collaborate and Innovate: Forming partnerships among retailers, tech firms, and content creators can spur innovation and make Spatial Commerce more accessible. Collaboration can help surmount technical challenges, lower costs, and craft distinctive experiences that attract consumers.


The Path Forward

Looking ahead, it’s evident that Spatial Commerce has the power to transform the retail sector. By offering immersive and interactive shopping experiences, this technology seeks to meld the convenience of online shopping with the tangible aspects of physical store visits. However, to harness this potential, businesses must tackle certain challenges, especially in terms of adoption and affordability.

History has consistently demonstrated how technological advancements and shifts in consumer behaviour go hand in hand. Much like how smartphones revolutionised communication and entertainment, Spatial Commerce stands at the brink of redefining retail. The onus is on businesses to embrace this evolution, innovate, and craft captivating, immersive experiences that strike a chord with customers.

Ultimately, Spatial Commerce transcends mere shopping; it’s about crafting experiences that enrich, captivate, and thrill. As we step into this new era, our imagination is the only limit to the possibilities. Let’s embark on this journey to the future of retail, where every shopping experience can be an exploration, a revelation, and a joy.


Leveraging Langia's SAP Commerce Expertise for Spatial Commerce Success

In the rapidly evolving landscape of Spatial Commerce, Langia stands out by offering unmatched expertise in SAP Commerce solutions. This knowledge is pivotal for companies looking to seamlessly merge Augmented and Virtual Reality into their digital commerce strategies. Langia equips businesses to smoothly incorporate immersive AR and VR experiences, thereby elevating customer engagement with personalised and interactive shopping adventures.

Guided by Langia, companies can tap into the powerful features of SAP Commerce Cloud, ensuring their Spatial Commerce endeavours are not just engaging but also perfectly aligned with their broader digital frameworks. This collaboration enables retailers to provide smooth, omnichannel experiences that align with contemporary consumers' desires for innovation and customization.

To explore how Langia can revolutionise your retail strategy with Spatial Commerce, feel free to reach out to us today.

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