In BuildIn3D we’ve delivered more than 50 millions 3D assembly instructions parts and we’ve decided to share our experience on why you should deliver 3D on your website and more importantly how to do it.
We’ve also found out how an iOS or Android App is just not enough.
It all starts with a site. It’s an ecommerce world.
In a world of ecommerce users find businesses and brands through a browser. They have probably heard about the brand, they would probably arrive on the site after a search. The business might have invested in search or social networks campaigns that drive traffic to the site. The user is on the site. In an ecommerce site it is important to present the product in the best possible way.
Level 1. Product name and price
The product could have just a name and price. Let’s look at an example for a LEGO SPIKE set. We use a LEGO example as we all know LEGO, and we especially love it.
Here is how the shopping experience on our demo site might look like.
|LEGO SPIKE Set||$ 350||Buy|
Clearly no contemporary internet user would buy from a site that offers just the name of the product and the price. Users need more. Users need at least a picture.
This type of sites and ecommerce experience are popular with very specialized industries where no end user is using the site and where you have thousands of products that are bought in bulk. Most of the time the user receives a spreadsheet with all the products and this is how the quotes are formed. It is just too expensive to make a picture of all the thousands of different components that you are selling. We are now working with a client that has over 16000 products and until now it was way too difficult for them to add anything more than a name and a price.
Level 2. Adding picture and description
A better version from a user experience and from a conversion point of view is to have a picture of the product that could show how the product looks. A short description could also improve the experience. Most of the time more pictures are better. The site might look like:
This site looks better. It includes not only the name and the price of the product, but also a picture and a short description. The picture clearly shows to the users what they are buying.
Our research shows that most of the ecommerce sites on the internet stop here – name, description, picture, price.
Level 3. Adding Video
One thing that could really improve the experience of the user is a video of the product in use. A video that shows other people using the product. Probably demonstrating how the product is used in a real life scenario or a review. This could keep the user engaged longer on the site and could significantly increase the conversions. Here is how such a site could look like.
Videos have a lot of advantages, but they come with a lot of drawbacks:
- Good videos are expensive to produce – they require a studio, a crew, some knowledge of editing software.
- Because they are expensive to produce it is not worth having videos for every single product.
- Good videos are expensive to be delivered over the internet – youtube and other networks are doing it, but this does not mean that it is not expensive. They have found a way to fund it. But 4K video of 10-15 seconds delivered a couple of hundred times could be expensive. Especially if you have hundreds of products and each of them has a video.
Level 4. Adding 3D, animations and interactions
As the final Level in the development of an ecommerce site you can add animations, interactions, LIVE 3D along with the pictures and the videos. Most products already have some form of 3D schemes and models, but it is difficult to convert them to a browser friendly format and show them to the users visiting your web site.
3D animations, assembly instructions, models and any form of interactions have many advantages:
- consistency – all the animations, assembly instructions, models could look and feel consistent. The lighting could be the same. The method of rendering could be the same. The color scheme and size could be the same.
- it is a lot cheaper when done in a bulk – compared to recording a video, delivering 3D models, animations and assembly instructions could be much cheaper. Probably not for the first product. But having the 3D models allows you to do things in bulk.
- interactions – you could develop specific interactions with the 3D models of your products that improve the user experience and make the site more fun and engaging to the end user.
Here is an example of an ecommerce experience that includes a Picture, Name, Description, Price, an Interesting 3D animation and a 3D Assembly instruction of what you could do with the product.
Level 4 is probably the most complete way to demonstrate a product on an ecommerce site. What we’ve found out is that adding 3D and interactions on the website could increase the engagement. We’ve seen cases where users stay 85% more on the site and where they stay ~3x times on the site.
Why is an iOS or Android app not enough?
Should you have an iOS or Android app – you should. You might already have one. In this iOS or Android app you can show more about the product, you can engage the user with different games you can ask the user to share pictures and videos of how they are using you product. Having an app is a great way to add value to the user.
The problem with APPs is the users do not find you through an app. Most of the time they find you through the website and their first interaction is with the website. Users come to the website or buy the product physically in a store and only after that they download the app that is for the specific product. Apps are for existing customers.
We’ve found out that because of this it is better to have 3D animations, models, assembly instructions first on the web, on your website where users first interact with your business or brand.
How to deliver 3D on the web?
Here are three ways to deliver 3D on the web.
You can start with pseudo 3D that delivers pictures and makes them look like 3D.
SIRV.com – https://sirv.com/
It gives you a way to show pictures. The good thing about pictures is that they could be very photo realistic. Make a lot of pictures from all sides of the product and you get a good presentation of the product.
Matterport – https://matterport.com/
You get the camera and you make the pictures. The pictures are combined and delivered. Again the images are realistic, but it is not 3D. It is more like Google Maps. Close to the real thing but you can freely zoom.
To deliver a real interactive LIVE 3D model you can use buildin3d.com
BuildIn3D – https://buildin3d.com
Our goal with BuildIn3D is to deliver a real 3D model on the web along with assembly instructions,pictures, animations and different interactions with the model.