The Virtual reality world is closer than we think and ready to positively change shopping experience as we know it. David P. Harris writes of recent gigantic strides by Myer and ebay to bring virtual reality to shopping. The article originally appeared in theconversation …

Department store Myer and online shopping giant eBay have teamed up to offer something different to consumers in a bold bid to change the way we shop, interact with, research and purchase products.

Their creation of a virtual reality (VR) department store – a place where consumers can shop if they are unable to visit Myer’s bricks and mortar stores – enables them to challenge the retail status quo.

Whether it came about by chance, intuition or meticulous research, the new offering is an experiment in sensory marketing. This is an area of marketing that combines perception, sensation and cognition.

How we use our senses to shop

There’s been a recent rush towards the field of sensory marketing, which was first pioneered by Professor Aradhna Krishna.

Krishna defines sensory marketing as “marketing that engages the consumers’ senses and affects their perception, judgment and behaviour”. Essentially, sensory marketing considers how a consumer sees, tastes, touches, smells and even hears the product and/or service experience. Sounds like common sense, but the uptake by retailers and managers to incorporate sensory elements into their products, stores and exchange designs has been slow. This is intriguing considering the plethora of emerging evidence on the power sensory modalities have on our decision making.

We use our senses to navigate our world and shape our decisions. Incorporating sensory elements into physical settings may be relatively easy, but an online environment presents a much harder, yet equally as important challenge. The Myer/eBay initiative is definitely a step in the right direction.

… to continue reading visit the conversation website

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PM Browne

Ceo/Founder at Shopping News Today
PM Browne is chief executive, SNT. Before now Browne worked previously in such key marketing areas as advertising, order fulfillment officer for an online retail giant before setting out to develop Shopping News Today to cater for the online e-commerce information sector
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