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4D Shopper Plus – VR Shopping for Marketing Research
Advanced Simulations - United States of America

Advanced Simulations is changing the game when it comes to virtual shopping for research with its new 4D Shopper Plus. This new approach uses photo-real shopping environments along with 3D interactive products to study shopping behavior.

Development Stage: Go-to-market
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It’s virtual shopping for marketing research with photo-real environments and the ability to run in true VR (head gear and handhelds) either online or offline from the company that started it all.

We’ve learned over the years that asking people about in-store is complex; they don’t think about packages, shelf sets, or prices much. We avoid this by taking them shopping, not asking questions.

Advanced Simulations was the originator of VR for MR. Now we’re combining our extensive knowledge of how to study and measure shopper behavior with the photo-real visuals provided by Azure Knowledge’s Digiwalks system. In addition, eye-tracking and emotion-recognition will be part of the system's capabilities. The cost of the research is much less than one might expect, making it affordable for manufacturers and for retailers. Our experimental designs stress efficiency, both in use of shoppers and testing of multiple categories. We still expect to complete studies in a few weeks. This tool can be used in any type of retail environment and is language-independent. It can run offline or online, making it scalable on a global basis.

ASL has published a number of case studies on our website (www.advancedsimulations.com) . Here’s one example: The client makes an iconic dairy product that hasn’t changed packaging in close to 20 years. They’ve come up with two new packages, one changes architecture while the other changes color and architecture. Fewer shoppers bought the product when the color and architecture changed, and both new packages received weaker attribute ratings. The package remains in the current version.

Shoppers are recruited via intercept or online, being asked to try a new way of shopping at home. They are taught how to move around the store, around the shelves, and how to interact with products. Taken on two shopping trips where we control what’s on the shelf – we measure their purchasing.

Author
Steve Needel
Co-Author
Dr. Stephen Needel - Advanced Simulations
Co-Author
Jay Ruparel - Azure Knowledge
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