Elevate your e-commerce site with CGI and 3D visuals

Published March 24, 2023

For shoppers, whether online or in-store, the buying experience is as important as the product or service they are buying. The line between entertainment and shopping has become blurred as technology, creativity, and the need to present a compelling - and competitive - offer combine to create an environment where consumers expect to be dazzled and amazed while they make their purchases.

The idea of offering an attractive and engaging user experience is not new. When companies sell online, their focus is always on offering their customers an easy-to-navigate website, excellent product content, efficient payment processing, and clean product visuals that work equally well on any device.

But as the world continues to change, the expectations of a user's experience develop and grow. Companies instinctively understand that offering an improved customer experience is a core part of developing their business, which they know to ignore at their peril.

New technology options, including 3d visualization, 3d animation, and virtual reality capabilities offer new opportunities - and challenges - to retailers looking to enhance their online and in-store customer engagement.

So, let's explore how you can elevate your e-commerce site with CGI and 3d visuals.

How is CGI empowering e-commerce marketing?

CGI marketing - the use of 3d graphics, 3d models, or other 3d product visualizations - allows a marketing team to overcome the shortcomings of traditional 2d animation and imagery to promote their products. While showing product images, perhaps with different color variations, for example, has worked well for many retailers, 3d animation capabilities allow them to step up a gear. 3d technology allows you to show a product, from multiple perspectives, at the swipe of a finger or the click of a mouse. It allows marketers to show unique features, perhaps using a 3d product configurator that might be difficult to present as well, just using 2d animations, images, and product text.

Clearly, there is value in offering these capabilities on a website. However, they really come into their own when they are utilized as part of a broader digital marketing strategy. This might feature using marketing automation tools to promote products and services on email, social media, and other channels. 3d content also works well with the influencer community, which is constantly looking to utilize high-quality content on its own channels.

Overall, CGI marketing can help support many businesses as part of their ongoing digital transformation projects, as consumer preferences, expectations, and behavior change, and businesses adapt their engagement models to capture these developments.

How can I boost my e-commerce site with CGI and 3d visuals?

From a product content perspective, the value of 3d visualization technology is that it helps make the online presentation of a product much more tangible. It allows people to view a product almost like they are in a retail store in real life.

There is also scope to take this to the next level by leveraging augmented reality capabilities - either online or even in-store - so that your customers can have a deeply immersive experience. This can be uniquely tailored to their needs, thanks to your marketing automation platform and the insight you can capture from your user data. You can use these capabilities to merge the online and in-store experiences so that both mutually support each other.

Adding product content that includes 3d animation or 3d visualization, for example, can make your website more attractive and engaging and gives you the most potential to deepen your relationships with your customers. It can help bolster your brand identity and make online shopping more of an experience than a chore.

As well as making your website 'stickier,' it offers you the chance to cross-sell and upsell more effectively if, for example, you could show how two items can work well together based on your customers' choices and preferences as they move through your online store.

How can I boost my online store conversions with CGI and 3d animations?

Being able to interact with a website much more will inspire your visitors and encourage them to spend more with you. Much of this is down to people buying personal items using their emotions rather than logic when making decisions. Presenting an item as desirable, unique, and personal will likely break down many barriers to a sale and encourage people to enter their credit card details quickly and more often.

But as any digital marketer will tell you, boosting conversions on a website store isn't simply a case of putting all your product content in a CGI-based format and crossing your fingers. It requires considerable thought, and how you approach it will depend on the nature of your products and your customer's typical journey.

The smart move is to place your 3d animated content throughout your digital network; on your website, social media, digital channels, and email campaigns. You can also use them to leverage the value of your business partner and influencer relationships, as you will likely find them keen to promote your products and services on their sites and channels. There is always a ready appetite for high-quality and relevant content.

Promoting this high-quality, interactive content allows prospects to educate themselves about what's available, and what they might buy. People are happy to be educated but hate being sold to, with all the pressures that can come with that. Instead, putting the content into their feeds, where they can discover it for themselves, can be a very effective driver for building sales volumes fast.

With all this in place, you can expect that once people land on your website, they are ready to buy straight away.  The only question then being how you can best use the opportunity to cross-sell and upsell other products? As well as deepen your relationship with them to build their loyalty and commitment to your brand and your business.

How can I integrate CGI into my online retail strategy?

The capabilities around 3d models and 3d rendering are hugely powerful and potentially very valuable and go well beyond simply streaming a video on your website.

But, as with any digital or website-based project, it isn't just a case of putting all your products into some kind of CGI-centric website structure. It requires careful thinking through, focusing on the needs of your customer and the needs of your business.

So, you should ask yourself some questions: Do all your products need to feature CGI animation? How does your model customer use your site? Do they linger and roam, or do they complete their purchases as quickly as they can? What types of products do you sell? Do they fetch a premium price, or are they more of a commodity? Do you launch new products every season or constantly refresh your offering throughout the year?

These are a small selection of the questions you might ask, but really it is not so much a question of how much of your product set you put into CGI; it is more about how much time and effort you put into thinking about how CGI will work for your business. Each animation is like a mini video. You need to think about the story you want it to tell and how it will entice the audience. Then you must think about how the CGI technology will help drive the success you need.

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