The online furniture industry is experiencing a boom. Sales are set to hit $44.5b by the end of 2019 and poised to grow about 10% annually for the next several years. But online shopping for furniture poses risks for the shopper. Will that couch fit in the living room? Will the fabric match my club chairs? Can I actually see the custom updates that I'm making so I can be sure it's what I want?
That's where a 3D configurator becomes an indispensable tool for seller and shopper alike. Peruse these examples to see how 3D configuration brings the product to life in real time, ensures buyer confidence and creates sales that stick.
3D Configurator for a Leather Sofa
Shopping for a new leather sofa or couch isn’t dissimilar to shopping for a car in that customers will likely spend years living with this purchase. The model they choose will be part of their daily life, visible in the background of every candid picture taken in the living room or den. The way this piece looks – down to the stitching on the cushions – matters to your customers.
While it may be hard to guess at comfort while shopping online for furniture, people can learn a lot about quality and construction from a 360-degree view of the product. Threekit’s interactive 3D product configurator can show shoppers every inch of a couch (in every available color) to help them make an informed decision.
Interactive 360 Models Make Buying Leather Sofas and Couches Easier Than Ever
Major pieces of household furniture like couches or sofas are an investment. Selecting the right custom finish options, planning out the timeline of manufacturing, and scheduling delivery is a process that people don’t rush through in one afternoon.
It’s easy to see why this process supports sales in traditional showrooms, and recent studies reflect this truth: Shopify reports that furniture sales make up less than 10 percent of eCommerce purchases through its platform.
But with the help of interactive 3D models, consumer behavior is changing when it’s time to place an order for a sofa or a nice recliner. Online purchases of living room furniture were up 40 percent year over year in 2018. And while it’s hard to establish causation at a glance, this seems to correlate with the rise of detailed 3D renderings of furniture that are becoming the standard for product imagery.
Customizable Digital Renderings Show Sofas and Couches from All Angles
As major furniture brands move to digital 3D models, digital product catalogues made up of static product images are becoming a thing of the past. Consumers now expect to be able to view products – including large items like couches and sofas – from all angles. Interactive 360-degree experiences allow shoppers to do just that.
The Threekit product configurator’s photorealistic renderings show a couch or sofa as it would look in a living room under real light. Unlike a flat image, these rotating models highlight the color of leather from different angles, showing the richness and dynamic color of each option.
If visitors to your eCommerce website are considering ordering a custom couch or sofa that isn’t available at most showrooms, a 360 view of a digital 3D model can fill most of the experience gap, allowing them to get a full view of the product to ensure it’s the right couch or sofa for their home.
3D Configurator for an Ikea Cabinet and Bookshelf
Even as buying things like clothes, appliances, and food on the internet becomes the norm, shopping for furniture online still gives many shoppers pause. Household items are usually a major investment for consumers, and if they’re unhappy with their purchase, both the consumer and the retailer lose time and energy returning heavy items.
Online 3D product imagery can solve that hesitation. A shopper can feel confident about ordering that bookcase they’ve been eyeing if they can look at a 360-degree model and try out different shelf styles, windows, and colors, all in real time. Threekit’s interactive 3D product configurator brings the Ikea showroom to the customer’s home.
Interactive 3D Furniture Models Boost Buyer Confidence
Return deliveries will cost an estimated $550 billion by 2020. That’s a staggeringly high price tag – and considering furniture item shipping fees tend to be higher than average online purchases, the stakes for ordering furniture online are higher, too.
If a customer is unable to go to a furniture store or would simply rather shop online, they want to get a sense of what a piece will look like in their living room, from every angle. But catalogs and static images can only capture one angle.
Threekit’s 3D configurator brings a bookcase to life: shoppers can try out different colors and door styles instantly as they rotate a model in any direction. They can get a hyper-realistic view of product details just as though they were taking a close look in stores. Shoppers won’t need to worry that the bookcase arriving in the mail won’t look anything like the 3D model.
Customize Features of a Cabinet or Bookshelf – and Check out How it Looks from Every Angle
Bookshelves, bookcases, and cabinets are typically selected based on how they’ll match other furniture pieces in a room. For this reason, shoppers will want to customize a piece of furniture to create the perfect addition to their space.
But shoppers don’t want to imagine what that custom cabinet will look like – they want to see it. As more and more furniture brands create 3D models of their products, shoppers will now be able to visualize custom elements of that cabinet, from the window paneling down to the wood stain.
If they can’t interact with a customizable 360 viewer of a product, soon, they’ll just head to the site where they can instead.
Want to make sure your site is one where customers can get a full, 360-degree view? Talk to us about how a 3D configurator can work for your website
3D Configurator for Velvet Couch and Sofa
Choosing a new sofa or couch may seem as challenging as picking a new apartment: you know you’re going to spend your life with this piece of furniture. So, it’s understandable that online shoppers may feel overwhelmed when it’s time to make this decision in the digital world.
The good news is that consumers who are shopping for furniture (and anything else) online can now preview an entire couch or sofa in 3D. With Threekit’s interactive 3D product configurator, no one has to guess what color the bottom of their new velvet couch or sofa will be, or wonder if the back is fully upholstered.
Customizable 3D Renderings Inform Shoppers’ Decisions
Whether someone starts out shopping for a sweetheart couch in a soft red velvet or they find themselves enamored with one they find along the way, it’s crucial that shoppers see the entire piece, as though they were in the same room with it. Large items like velvet couches and sofas are well-suited for 3D renderings, as they’re somewhat hard to move around to preview, even in a showroom.
And it’s important that your customer knows what they’re getting. If your eCommerce brand sells furniture, you know how much shipping costs for delivery and returns can cut into your bottom line. One of the best ways to ensure that customers get what they want the first time around is to show your customers an interactive 3D rendering that allows them to preview the product they’re considering from every angle.
Consumer Confidence in Online Furniture Shopping is Growing
A study by eMarketer found that although sales of furniture and home furnishings only accounted for only about 10 percent of total retail eCommerce in 2018, this category represented the fastest growth at over 18 percent year over year.
What grows consumer confidence? Increased information. If you’re wondering whether you should start to create 360 images of your products, it may help to return to your goals. If you aim to move the customer to purchase and ensure that shoppers’ expectations match the product they’re about to order, a 360 rendering of the product in 3D provides a better customer experience than a carousel of eight still images.
Threekit is product visualization software that creates photorealistic images, interactive 3D and augmented reality experiences that help businesses sell more. To learn more, please schedule some time with one of our teammates.