AR Holiday Stores in Snapchat


Marc Roberts 

Despite being around for decades, augmented reality can still feel like technology rooted in the distant future. It is a crucial component of any ecommerce storefront, and is capable of engaging customers and boosting conversions. According to Snap Inc., more than 100 million consumers are shopping with AR online and in stores. The most practical use for AR that exists today is online shopping. The pandemic also had an impact on this process. 

Following this trend, Snapchat launched six immersive augmented reality experiences on Black Friday. Amazon Prime Video, Coca Cola, Under Armour, Verizon, and Walmart will each have a dedicated virtual store where users can go through products and deals. Fashion and beauty brands like American Eagle, Fendi, Nyx cosmetics, Shein, Dior, and Tory Burch will be running AR shopping lenses. 

People can snag holiday deals and users can access the lenses through each participating brand’s public profile on Snapchat, in addition to the lens carousel on their phone camera screen. Coca Cola’s AR room is particularly festive, as it will virtually recreate a visit to Santa at the mall. Users can take a photo with Santa and experience AR surprises. They can also explore Hollister’s winter collection in a custom virtual retail space that links back to a microsite where customers can make purchases. 

The stores will have dedicated product offers – much as we created in Miami – , such as ‘try on’ features. Prime Video  features a virtual trailer room where customers can watch clips from ‘Thursday Night Football’ and from series like ‘The Wheel of Time’, ‘Fairfax’, and ‘I know What You Did Last Summer’. Users can also subscribe to prime Video directly within the AR experience. 

Under Armour’s AR stadium is ice-covered. It  lets users purchase activewear for the winter sports season. Verizon’s  features a treasure hunt for holiday deals, where customers can make purchases directly through the lens. Buyers can also explore products from Walmart’s holiday gift guide at its AR store. The participating beauty and fashion brands will contribute to Snapchat’s push to connect with young audiences. 

Snapchat will also use ads between Thanksgiving and New Years to help customers discover the lenses. On December 6, the company will launch an out-of-home campaign in New York city encouraging users to use the app and scan to shop with various QR codes. With Snapchat, users can use AR to try on and visualize products in a virtual space. This experience will enrich the relationship between consumers and brands. 

This year the holiday shopping season is still feeling the effects of the pandemic, and Snapchat’s endeavor will recreate and enhance the traditional shopping experience. This experience will give Snapchat an edge over its competitors. It will not only boost sales, but help build customer relationships and add value to the shopping  experience.

About the Author: Marc Roberts is a Miami based entrepreneur.