According to recent statistics, up to 40% of items purchased online in 2020 have already been returned, with most of those returns being clothing. However, a new Google update using augmented reality (AR) filters could be set to help reduce return rates for businesses.
The new update allows users to virtually test out makeup – yes, you read that right! The search giant has partnered with Perfect Corp and ModiFace to help people visualise what different makeup products, like lipstick and eyeshadow, will look like. The makeup available for virtual testing is from well-known brands too, including Charlotte Tilbury and L’Oréal.
As someone who buys makeup myself, this feature is particularly appealing, as with hygiene policies, makeup and beauty products often are not accepted as returns, meaning an online purchase becomes a bit of a gamble. Indeed, Google on its blog echoed this sentiment when announcing the news of the new feature:
“If you’re shopping for beauty products, it’s difficult to make a decision on such personal items without trying them on. Say you want to know how sheer a lip gloss is, how much pigment is in an eyeshadow or what a product will look like on your skin tone, it can be difficult to understand these things without seeing the products up close.”
When testing out the makeup, you can choose to try it out on various premade faces with a range of different skin tones. If the generic faces aren’t to your liking, you can use the new AR feature to try it out on your own face using your phone’s camera. You can see an example of this here.
The technology works in the same way as the famous Snapchat face filters that took the world by storm back in 2015. These filters have since extended to apps like Instagram, but Google’s adoption of AR marks a turning point in online shopping. While similar features already exist – like Wayfair’s app to add furniture to a room – it’s likely that makeup is only the start for Google, and that it will expand its AR features in time to encompass a whole range of products.
This spells great news for online retailers, who may receive both increased sales and decreased return rates. If you need help setting up an online shop, get in touch with us at Engage Web today.