The benefits of 3D product visualization and how to use it effectively
Since COVID-19, customers have embraced digital shopping at an unprecedented rate. Out of necessity, brands have had to accelerate the shift away from brick and mortar to digital storefronts, and figure out how to translate the advantages of an in-person shopping experience into the digital world.
These trends have led to a surge in digital transformations and a rush to embrace the tactics and tools that facilitate engaging online experiences. An ever-increasing number of brands are adopting 3D product visualization to help them gain a competitive edge.
From architecture to auto manufacturing, brands in almost every industry are finding 3D visualization to be a highly effective way to communicate the complexities and intricacies of their products. 3D product visualization provides a bridge between physical shops and online by offering digital representations of products that are faithful to the original.
What is 3D product visualization?
3D product visualization is simply the creation of three-dimensional models of products. Three-dimensional models provide compelling visuals that showcase products in a much more impressive and thorough way than a simple, text-based product description. These can be anything from 360 degree videos, showing the product from all angles, to an interactive view which shows a product’s internal components.
Imagine you’re shopping online for a new office chair for your home office. With a 3D visualization, you can sort and filter between multiple variations of the same chair, and narrow your selection by size, color, and materials. You can visualize the specs of the chair and place it in a lifestyle and living environment that matches your own. This allows you to gather information and easily determine which chair will fit your needs.
Today's brands are investing in 3D
One of the biggest factors in any purchase decision is the ability to visualize a product. With 3D product visualization, brands are able to virtually communicate the unique feel of their products and allow customers to envision products as they would exist in their everyday life - all from the comfort of their home. Brands also use 3D visualizations to demonstrate different product variations.
3D product visualization enables brands to offer the highly engaging experiences today’s customers expect. Potential customers can thoroughly inspect a product before buying it, allowing them to better understand what they’re purchasing. Customers see products from every angle, and switch between different colors and models with a simple click.
The ability to examine and customize products to fit their unique needs and tastes significantly enhances a potential customer’s shopping experience, and the best part? Customers aren’t restricted by storefront operating hours.
For marketers, 3D product visualization is an effective sales tool that can improve revenue and engagement metrics, reduce returns, and retain customers.
Photography vs 3D
3D digital product visualization is frequently used as an alternative to product photography. While photography has its place and can artfully exhibit a completed project, 3D visualizations offer a few advantages over traditional product photography:
- You save time and money otherwise spent on expensive and time-consuming photoshoots.
- You can showcase every angle and perspective of your product at once, providing for a better user experience.
- 3D visualizations offer more flexibility: modifications are easy, your products don’t have to be reshot if you change an element of their design, and you can quickly create thousands of product variations.
- You can begin designing a 3D model of a product while it is still being developed. That way, you can launch your marketing campaigns as soon as the product is ready.
Overall, both 3D product visualization and traditional photography can clearly and efficiently highlight a product’s selling points. A combination of the two is sure to give you the best of both worlds.
Here’s a closer look at how we utilized a 3D product visualizer in some of our own projects.
Nike React runner
We worked with Nike to create a highly-interactive 3D experience showcasing a specific product - a new sneaker called the React. Our goal was to create a compelling, unique, and personalized experience that gave potential customers the feeling of Nike’s ultra-soft and ultra-springy shoe.
The user experience extrapolates the feel of the innovative new foam used in the shoe by using metaphors like pillows, springs, and teddy bears to link to the actual product and create an immersive visual experience. Potential customers had the opportunity to build their own personalized runner from a range of colors, textures, and running styles customized to reflect their unique needs in a running shoe. The 3D experience was fully-integrated in stores, on the Nike app, and Nike’s website for a holistic, omnichannel customer experience.
As Teeez Cosmetics was expanding into the US and Canadian markets, they needed a way to be innovative and memorable during their in-store launches. We developed a mobile and in-store Augmented Reality application that would help them stand out and engage with customers as they explored Teeez’s variety of products.
The app scanned users' faces in 3D, and gave potential customers the option to virtually try on a range of different products and create their own custom looks. After choosing the perfect combination, customers could share their beauty creations via social media, save the look within the app, and have the products sent directly to their homes.
Every year, our motion design team creates entirely new brand idents, a form of branding that employs a short video of visual elements that represent our digital agency.
DPDK’s brand idents feature our logo, a plus sign, and serve as a micro-portfolio of our capabilities and our team’s artistic talent. The 3D visualizations display our logo in a variety of different textures and contexts, from the body of an amethyst crystal to a sleek metal sculpture wrapped in a sheet.
The idents were developed using a workflow that combines Blender, After Effects, Photoshop, and Illustrator. The end result is a showreel of some of our best work and an entirely immersive experience for viewers.
The right visuals can make or break how your product is perceived. 3D product visualization allows marketers to create engaging digital customer experiences by offering flexibility, efficiency, and impact.
Online competition is fierce; brands unwilling to adapt will be quickly overrun by their competitors, making 3D product visualization an integral technique for any marketer looking to succeed in today’s digital landscape.