UK’s Largest Furniture Retailer DFS Sees a 22X Return on Investment (ROI) in Augmented Reality through Partnership with Vertebrae

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Web-based 3D and AR visualizations of more than 10,000 sofas answers shoppers’ questions about fit, function, and style – no app download required

We knew that 3D and AR would deliver an innovative shopping experience that went far beyond video or still images.

Vertebrae, the technology leader in 3D and augmented reality (AR) solutions for retail, today announced that leading UK furniture retailer DFS has successfully launched the largest Web-based AR implementation in the world and has driven significant sales growth despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Powered by Vertebrae, DFS offers 3D and AR-enabled visualizations for more than 10,000 sofas, allowing shoppers to virtually display the items in their home to examine details and assess fit and style, with no application download required. Since launching in January, the partnership has delivered significant results, including a 112% conversion lift and 106% increase in Revenue Per Visit (RPV) for shoppers who have interacted with 3D and AR.

“DFS prides itself on bringing comfort to our customers, because a sofa is more than just a piece of furniture - it’s a place where home life happens,” said James Vernon, Head of Online at DFS. “We knew that 3D and AR would deliver an innovative shopping experience that went far beyond video or still images. Now digital shoppers can bring a virtual sofa into their home or office, and even walk around it, to see if it fits their space and matches the existing style of the room. The results so far have been outstanding, and we are successfully growing online sales through our partnership with Vertebrae.”

Furniture is a highly considered purchase and shoppers have many important questions, from whether a sofa fits in the space and matches other items in the room to how comfortable it is. DFS wanted to give customers more tools to easily answer these questions and ultimately give them more confidence in their purchases.

Vertebrae Solution
Through Vertebrae’s Axis platform, DFS is bringing Web-based AR and 3D experiences directly into the purchase path without having to manage the process in-house. Today, shoppers visiting the DFS site can view handmade sofas in detail through a 3D button that allows the shopper to view the sofa from every angle, zooming in and out to access product details. From there, the shopper can tap “View in Your Space” to display the sofa virtually within the context of their own home or office.

Fit is a crucial consideration for online furniture buyers and AR is an essential tool in helping shoppers assess product dimensions. AR displays the sofa at precise size and scale within the real-life environment for an accurate estimate of proportions relative to the rest of the room. The AR experience is available through a direct product page link so that shoppers can quickly determine whether products are the right fit - both in terms of dimensions and style - all without needing to detour away from the shopping environment to download a separate application.

Unprecedented Results
Thanks to its January 2020 implementation of immersive features from Vertebrae, DFS was well-positioned to weather the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused temporary store closures throughout the UK as the nation went on lockdown. By outsourcing the management, integration, display and measurement of immersive assets designed for the Web, DFS was able to quickly pivot to showcase 3D and AR, without needing to quickly reconfigure and market an app download.

The brick and mortar store will always be an important part of the sofa buying journey, but at a time when the showrooms were temporarily closed, DFS continues to deliver standout shopping experiences that give consumers confidence in purchase decisions and deliver immediate conversion gain. Results include:

  • DFS has seen 4x more incremental revenue generated per month than originally forecasted on products with 3D and AR;
  • DFS has seen a 22X return on their investment in 3D and Augmented Reality working with Vertebrae;
  • DFS has seen a conversion lift of 112% and a revenue per visit lift of 106% for shoppers who interact with 3D and AR versus those who have not.

“DFS’s immersive commerce implementation is the largest in the world, with more than 10,000 AR and 3D-enabled products available to view, zoom, spin and visualize in the customer’s home,” said Vince Cacace, CEO of Vertebrae. “Vetebrae’s Axis platform gives DFS a highly scalable and unified toolset for managing, testing, deploying, and measuring Web-based 3D and AR assets, all while ensuring they are compatible with multiple browsers and device types. The result is that DFS shoppers are spending more, and online conversion rates as well as revenue per visit have all increased despite challenging conditions since launch in January.”

About DFS
DFS is the leading retailer of sofas in the UK with a 50 year heritage. Headquartered in Doncaster, it operates over 120 showrooms across the UK, Ireland, Spain and the Netherlands, together with a leading web platform. The brand runs broad reaching advertising campaigns that drive brand recall and focus on comfort and value for money. DFS is often an anchor tenant, driving significant footfall to destination retail parks. DFS is the most commonly searched term online in the sector, ahead of even “sofa”, and its website received an average of 1.7m unique visitors each month in the 12 months to June 2019.

About Vertebrae
Vertebrae is the leading provider of 3D & augmented reality (AR) commerce solutions for the world's largest brands including adidas, Coach, Facebook, Microsoft, Toyota, Herschel Supply Co. and more. Founded with the vision of making the online shopping experience more like real life, Vertebrae’s technology enables web-based 3D & AR product visualization and try-on experiences that drive engagement and sales. The company’s award winning immersive commerce platform and unparalleled expertise in enterprise eCommerce and 3D and AR ensure that the process of 3D asset creation, management, deployment, and reporting is fast and easy for retailers of all sizes. Vertebrae is headquartered in Los Angeles with offices in Austin. For more information, visit https://www.vertebrae.com.

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Emily Brady
Vertebrae
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