3D Product Modelling

3D product modelling: how to use it on your ecommerce website

By Cristina Ferrandez

3D product modelling is transforming online retail. With more customers shopping online than ever before, brands are increasingly turning to new innovative technologies in order to stand out in a crowded marketplace. 

A leader when it comes to visual marketing techniques, 3D product modelling can inspire customers to act. Often, 3D technologies go hand in hand with augmented reality (AR).

Already brands that utilize 3D product modelling and AR are seeing tremendous results. After creating 3D models of its products, the stroller retailer Bumbleride improved customers’ average time on site by 21% and conversion rate by 33%. 

So, what exactly is 3D product modelling? And why does Deloitte call AR and 3D technology “the quiet revolution”? 

What is a 3D model?

3D models are photorealistic representations of real-world products. When utilized correctly, 3D models can be a major asset for your online retail business. 

Today, 3D product modelling is available for just about any product you can photograph: cars, furniture, shoes, and everything in between. Almost any type of brand will benefit from shoppers’ ability to better assess how their product will look in real life. 

Benefits of 3D product modelling

From a beginner’s perspective, converting your product catalogue into 3D models may sound like a time-consuming process that requires special technology. 

Fortunately, you may already have some of the high-quality photographs you need to create 3D models of your products. Even if you don’t, the benefits of using 3D product modelling are well worth the small investment required. 

1. 3D product modelling brings your products to life

3d product modelling
An example of a 3D model in action (Image source)

3D models are a step above traditional photography when it comes to giving consumers the best, most realistic representation of your products. 

One of the main benefits of 3D models is that they allow you to display your products from every angle, giving consumers more information than 2D photos. 3D models are also true to size, shape, and colour and can be easily used to create AR experiences, a marketing feature that allows customers to view the product they’re looking at in their own homes.  

Thanks to 3D models in product pages, consumers can effortlessly choose the right product for them —gaining a realistic scope of the products or what it looks like in a particular colour. 3D models allow an at home try-before-you-buy experience for consumers. 

2. 3D product modelling can be used in display ads

3d product modelling
MG Motor 3D immersive display ad 

Once you have 3D models of your inventory, an easy way to leverage these new promotional resources is to create a display ad. This is even easier now with Google Swirl, a relatively new offering tailored towards helping companies create elegant 3D ad experiences. 

British automotive brand MG Motor recently paired with Poplar Studio to create a captivating 3D ad for their new compact SUV, where viewers could zoom in, rotate, pan around, and examine the car from all angles. 

The campaign ended up with an engagement rate eight times higher compared to rich media. These results are reflective of what can be expected from a 3D display ad. Users are 27% more likely to make a purchase when they’ve interacted with a 3D model and 65% more likely to purchase when viewing a product in AR.

3. 3D product modelling ranks you higher on Google

Incorporating 3D models is a pain-free way of bumping up your website’s SEO performance as well. Google currently scans webpages for 3D models and ranks those using 3D model technology higher than those that don’t.

4. 3D product modelling puts you at a competitive advantage

Our furniture visualisation project for Orendt, using a 3D model of a sofa visualised in AR

With the above in mind, it should come as no surprise that including 3D models on your retail site puts you at a competitive advantage next to those that only use photos or videos to showcase their products. 

Research shows that more than 8 in 10 customers activate the 3D view on a product page that allows 3D product representations. Moreover, over 9 in 10 shoppers favour an interactive 3D representation to video playback. 3D models have also been demonstrated to increase conversion rates by 250% on product pages. 

When you also consider that you can continue using the same 3D model to generate colour variations, animations, and augmented reality experiences, converting your products into 3D models can be a continually lucrative one-time effort.

How to get started

It’s clear that 3D product modelling offers a host of benefits, so how do you go about converting your current product catalogue? 

We’ve already mentioned that all you need are high-quality photographs. Still, to make the process as seamless as possible, it is also best to work with an agency that can ensure you receive high-quality assets quickly and cost-effectively. 

At Poplar Studio, we are leaders in the space largely because of the preexisting creator network we’ve built, which we can leverage for large-scale asset creation in a fraction of the time a promotional campaign would normally take. 

When looking at other companies offering comparable services, remember that they more than likely employ an internal team of 3D modellers. Unfortunately, this set up caps the scalability and speed at which they can produce superior assets. 

Additionally, a lot of growth in this space will come from readily available 3D scanners for photogrammetry. This method can be fast and cheap; however, it will always have limitations that require manual 3D work from designers for some trickier aspects of modelling, such as reflective materials and smaller, more intricate details. 

Truly expeditious 3D modelling combines methods as judged by an experienced agency like Poplar Studio on a case-by-case basis. Interested in getting started with 3D product modelling? Get in touch with us today! 

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