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Snap launches new AR commerce and shopping experience

Augmented Reality (AR) platform Snapchat has announced the roll-out of Catalog-powered Shopping Lenses, in its latest bid to make AR shopping simpler and more engaging for consumers, and easier to build, scale, and optimize for brands. 

Over the past year, Snap has centred on AR shopping as a key company initiative – offering brands real-time AR try-on experiences that reach millions of Snapchatters. From trying on makeup, to shoes, to watches, to glasses, AR shopping is a key emerging part of how its community engages with the app. Snapchat has over 200 million users engaging with AR more than 6 billion times per day.

According to Jeremi Gorman, Chief Business Officer, Snap Inc: “Augmented reality is changing the way we shop, play, and learn, and transforming how businesses tell their stories and sell their products. Starting today, our revamped AR Shopping Lenses will mean a more engaging experience for our Snapchat community, and enable a faster, easier way to build Lenses for businesses — directly linking Lenses to existing product catalogs for real-time analytics and R&D about which products resonate with Gen Z and Millennial audiences.” 

The new AR Shopping User Experience allows shoppers to see key product information and SKU-specific purchase capability, including real-time dynamically updated price and color details. This gives Snapchatters all the pertinent product information quickly, as they simply tap on the Lens Product Card to purchase each individual item. 

For brands, the new AR Shopping Lenses are “catalog-powered” in that they are directly linked to a company’s product catalog, delivering fast and real-time analytics. Marketers can now leverage Snapchat’s AR try-on as an early indication on which products customers are engaging with, and utilize these signals when ideating on targeting strategies and early-on decision making for product development – down to the SKU level. This feature also allows Snapchat to optimize delivery of a businesses’ Shopping Lens to users most likely to purchase each item. 

Snap has also streamlined its Lens Web Builder, a free web creation tool where any brand can create an AR experience to run on Snapchat. Brands can now generate a commerce Lens in as little as two minutes.

In a recent AR try-on beta program with over 30 brands, across verticals from beauty to auto, Snapchatters tried on products over 250 million times.