3D product configuration is on the rise in the retail industry, thanks to the human desire to stand out and be unique. Coupled with the advances in tech, retailers are grasping the concept, allowing shoppers to make an item their own and show their individuality. Answering the question about a future-proof strategy is simple enough – tech is only going to get more advanced as time goes on, therefore making 3D product configuration a software without limits.

There’ll always be a developer that can make the new version better than the last and fix issues that arise. As it stands, product configuration is something special that not all brands can afford to have or don’t see the value in, but as it becomes mainstream, there’ll be no choice but to follow suit. Reserved at the moment for household names and expensive designer brands, it may take time for high street brands and small businesses to catch on, but there is so much room for development that configurators will eventually suit everyone.

The popularity of exclusive and limited edition products is nothing new – these buzzwords have been regularly used to market everything from clothes to furniture – but product configurators actually allow these classifications to materialise, putting the customer in control. Anything that provides a large amount of choice is always going to win over standard offerings – why have a plain pair of trainers that other people are wearing when you can have a pair in your favourite colour with your initials on?

The online world we live in is already so fast-paced, with expectations for instant results. This is only going to grow with the rise of social media and artificial intelligence. A few years down the line, the traditional ways of marketing may become obsolete, so businesses will have to reconfigure their sales tools to match demand.

3D product configuration isn’t just about sales, it’s about customer experience. Although it’s tricky to forsee how we will be shopping in the future, we do know that product configuration will become automated to save time and boost efficiency. Like many new technologies, the strategy will take the lead in learning about customer behaviour and how it can be developed in the future.

Currently there are many ways customers seek out personalised items, for example having their name printed onto a product or choosing a bespoke material. However, these are still usually done online or in-store without a configurator to view what the finished product would look like, so in a way it’s luck of the draw until the item is delivered.

Product configuration is the future because it provides the customer with complete transparency before purchase, resulting in higher satisfaction, repeat purchases and a strong brand reputation.

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