Getting those paint rollers out for a spot of home improvement is often the first thing that ‘most’ proud new homeowners can’t wait to do! Not sure about you, but using the power of imagination is not enough for me, I like to visualise the result before committing to getting those paint brushes out! This is the same with customers in most markets, we all like to see proof that what we’re going to purchase will live up to our expectations so that we can be more confident that our hard-earned money won’t be wasted. Virtual and augmented realities (VR and AR) provide the perfect opportunities for demonstrating and experiencing product capabilities.

With the recent developments this year the buzzword ‘Metaverse’ ⁠- the term used to describe VR worlds created for people to explore, play games in and interact with others around the world- it won’t be long until the Metaverse becomes more accessible and a part of our everyday lives. 

With home improvement in the Metaverse, the possibilities are endless. You could create a virtual replica of your home then build extensions, move furniture around and add in products from your favourite retailers. Or perhaps you want some escapism, to a dream home far far away from real life. You could even be Snoop Dog’s virtual neighbour if you really desired ⁠— yes he is building a Metaverse replica of his real-life mansion!  

Source: The Drum Chip Shop Awards Entry Reflect Digital x IKEA 2022

Home improvement retailers will soon be using the metaverse to sell us our visions, offering us a multidimensional immersive, sensory experience (there’s no wonder it’s VR and the Metaverse has been deemed to be the future of buying!). With the use of a VR headset, we’ll be able to experience our vision come to life and walk around the 360° space, making decor and furnishing adjustments until it's perfect! 

Source: Luxury Villas in White Sands Game Metaverse

Source: Decentraland Metaverse

Blending eCommerce into VR gives retailers the opportunity to connect with customer emotions like never before. Visualising products like furniture in situ within VR spaces gives us the sense of them already belonging to us. We value items more if they belong to us, this is called the endowment effect, so retailers have the perfect opportunity to help us create semantic bonds with their products. The endowment effect can be explained as a byproduct of loss aversion; where we dislike losing something but enjoy gaining and maintaining.

Shopping for home decor in the Metaverse isn’t that far away… there are already digital eCommerce ecosystems being created. Mallverse is building a metaverse mall where shoppers around the world will be able to visit digital brand storefronts. They envisage visitors will be able to view and try items on with their camera lens and perform one-tap eCommerce check-out transactions. 

Source: Mallverse ⁠— A Metaverse Shopping Mall

Does the future of shopping lie in the Metaverse? 

Only time will tell, but…

It’s hard to imagine a world that relies on VR technology so much, but not so long ago it was also difficult to imagine a world with an all-in-one phone/music player/camera (i.e. a modern mobile phone) in your pocket! 

We’re not saying we support a future that resembles something out of the Disney film WALL-E, but we do think that VR is going to start becoming a major part of our lives sooner rather than later and this has only been sped up by the introduction of the Metaverse. 

In the future, VR and the Metaverse could provide a virtual shopping environment (e.g. an online store) where customers can virtually browse retailers’ products without physically having to leave their homes. Picture an online shopping mall, your virtual self could roam around various home improvement shops looking for your perfect bathroom cabinet at any time of day or night. And if you see one you like? You can order it in the virtual store ready for physical, in-real-life (IRL) delivery whenever’s convenient. Some companies have already started to adopt technologies like this; a major example is IKEA with their online showrooms (IKEA Immerse). Other examples include Wren where customers can design their kitchen in-store and Dunelm who also recently adopted virtual shopping services.

Source: IKEA Immerse

Source: Wren Kitchens on YouTube

So, have you begun thinking about how your business will be approaching virtual life and the Metaverse? Are you keen to strategise but don’t know where to start? Get in touch with our team to see how our team of digital experts can help you. 


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