Augmented Reality in eCommerce

The Customer Experience Revolution

Mar 10, 2022 1:30 pm2:30 PM EST

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Key Discussion Takeaways

Many things are now being done virtually, and augmented reality (AR) is one of the most important features sparking excitement today. AR can be utilized on your company’s website to produce content for consumers, but is it the right strategy for you?

Digital content has blown up over the past two years due to the pandemic causing a change in consumer shopping habits. As the world goes digital, companies need to produce more content about their product if they want to make sales and grow. But what strategies should be at the top of your list? The best ways to increase sales include augmented reality, virtual reality, 3D, and spin images.

In this virtual event, Aaron Conant sits down with Andrew Potkewitz, the Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Alliances at Redstage, and Bradley Cooper, the Senior eCommerce Manager at Jura Coffee, to talk about augmented reality in eCommerce. They discuss how important it is for a company to have AR on their site, how you can use it for both high and low price point products, and the process to launch and scale the augmented reality feature on a website.

 

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Andrew Potkewitz and Bradley Cooper talk about augmented reality (AR) and what pushed them to use it in their companies 
  • The value of using AR in your company
  • Bradley explains what Jura Live is and what it offers to clients 
  • Why is it important to have a live demo feature on your company’s website?
  • How does AR increase website sales?
  • Is it wise to launch AR for lower price point items?
  • Other ways in which digitization saves money and accelerates company growth 
  • How long does it take to launch and scale an AR project?
  • Other exciting technologies and tactics that companies are using to increase their sales — like buy now pay later
  • Interesting opportunities on the horizon
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Event Partners

Guest Speakers

Aaron Conant

Co-Founder & Managing Director at BWG Connect

Aaron Conant is Co-Founder and Chief Digital Strategist at BWG Connect, a networking and knowledge sharing group of thousands of brands who collectively grow their digital knowledge base and collaborate on partner selection. Speaking 1x1 with over 1200 brands a year and hosting over 250 in-person and virtual events, he has a real time pulse on the newest trends, strategies and partners shaping growth in the digital space.

Andrew Potkewitz

VP, Marketing & Strategic Alliances at Redstage

Andrew Potkewitz is the Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Alliances at Redstage, a company that specializes in modernizing and supporting digital systems for B2B companies through end-to-end eCommerce services. Andrew and his team create B2B digital leaders through enterprise eCommerce design, development, strategy, and support.

Bradley Cooper

Sr. eCommerce Manager at Jura Coffee

Bradley Cooper is the Senior eCommerce Manager at Jura Coffee, the innovation leader in automatic coffee machines in the United States. Jura brings new sophistication, quality, versatility, and ease of use to brewing espresso-based beverages at home. Bradley has been with Jura since 2008, became the Product Manager in 2014, and in 2018, took over the eCommerce Manager role.

Event Moderator

Aaron Conant

Co-Founder & Managing Director at BWG Connect

Aaron Conant is Co-Founder and Chief Digital Strategist at BWG Connect, a networking and knowledge sharing group of thousands of brands who collectively grow their digital knowledge base and collaborate on partner selection. Speaking 1x1 with over 1200 brands a year and hosting over 250 in-person and virtual events, he has a real time pulse on the newest trends, strategies and partners shaping growth in the digital space.

Andrew Potkewitz

VP, Marketing & Strategic Alliances at Redstage

Andrew Potkewitz is the Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Alliances at Redstage, a company that specializes in modernizing and supporting digital systems for B2B companies through end-to-end eCommerce services. Andrew and his team create B2B digital leaders through enterprise eCommerce design, development, strategy, and support.

Bradley Cooper

Sr. eCommerce Manager at Jura Coffee

Bradley Cooper is the Senior eCommerce Manager at Jura Coffee, the innovation leader in automatic coffee machines in the United States. Jura brings new sophistication, quality, versatility, and ease of use to brewing espresso-based beverages at home. Bradley has been with Jura since 2008, became the Product Manager in 2014, and in 2018, took over the eCommerce Manager role.

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Discussion Transcription

Aaron Conant  0:18 

Happy Thursday, everybody. My name is Aaron Conant. I'm the Co-founder and Managing Director here at BWG Connect. And we're a networking and knowledge-sharing group of thousands of organizations that do exactly that. We network and knowledge share together to stay on top of the newest trends, strategies, pain points, partners, whatever it is that shaping the digital landscape. I talk with 30 to 40 brands a week, just stay on top of those trends. We'd love to have a conversation with anybody on the line today. That's where we actually get all the topics for our events across the board is through those conversations, but also open to kind of advising what's happening across the digital stack. Look for a follow-up email from us. We're all way back into fold in-person events now. So if you're in a tier-one city, and you want to jump into one of those events, and meet face to face, that'd be awesome as well just shoot us a note. A couple of housekeeping items as we get started here. The first one is, we want this to be as educational and informational as possible. So at any point in time, if you have a question, drop into the chat, drop into the q&a, or you can always email me aaron@bwgconnect.com that includes an hour after the call today, tomorrow, next week, whenever you have any questions in digital space to shoot it over to us, and we usually get you an answer back in under a day. The other thing is, we're starting this at four to five minutes after the hour. And just so you know, we're going to wrap up with four to five minutes to go on the hour as well. We're going to give you plenty of time to get on to your next meeting without being late. And so with that, I want to kind of set the basis for this conversation, why it came up is we've had a ton of people, I mean, content, obviously is blown up and digital content and imagery is blown up over the past two years. And there's been a lot of conversations around augmented reality, virtual reality, 3d, Spin images, do we need them? Do we not? Are they useful? Are they not useful? What does it take to employ this? There's so many questions on it, we've got some great friends, partners and supporters, the network over at Redstage at Adobe, as well, but also at Jura Coffee. And so they agreed to jump on the line today kind of walkthrough, hey, this is different aspects of it. And kind of give us an overview. And so again, if you have any questions across the board, drop them in and we can get them answered. But as we kick it off today, Andrew, I'll kick it over to you. If you want to do a brief intro on yourself in the organization, then we can kick it over to Bradley, and then kind of jump into conversation. Sound good.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  2:39 

Perfect. Thanks very much for that. So my name is Andrew Potkewitz, I head up marketing and partnerships at Redstage. We are a full-service commerce agency really have been doing this since about 2008 and grew pretty rapidly with Magento in the mid-market space. So we're strategy design development optimization of businesses, of commerce businesses. We used to say digital commerce, but now it's just commerce, because we are all across multiple channels and worked on a lot of strategy. We, as I said, grew in the mid-market space. We have over the past few years gotten into a lot more of the b2b and enterprise space. So we're servicing merchants sort of across many verticals across many different GMV. Definitely a focus going forward in the CPG manufacturing b2b space. So it's been an exciting ride we've been working with Bradley, Jura for quite some time. So with that, I will kick it over to you Bradley.

 

Bradley Cooper  3:41 

Yeah, absolutely. I was going over my notes for this call. And I actually I've been with Jura since 2008, which scares me a little bit when I think about 2022 now. I come from a more traditional marketing background. I became product manager in 2014. And then in 2018, I took over the eCommerce Manager role. Senior eCommerce Manager now and yet Jura. For a lot of people who may not be super familiar with the brand, our brand represents the very best Swiss-engineered automatic coffee machine. So what we make are machines that can grind, brew, froth, provide you that perfect cafe experience, right from the comfort of your own home. And all of our machines are Swiss-engineered. And we've been really excited to work with Redstage over the years to build out our direct-to-consumer business and our eCommerce site.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  4:39 

So a quick question for you, Bradley. So you're 14 years in, which is I mean, that's like you're a lifer there. You had to guess how many cups of coffee you've consumed since you started there.

 

Bradley Cooper  4:52 

Oh, man, my tolerance is very high now. So it takes a lot to get me going in the morning. I don't have an exact number for you. But quite a lot, that's for sure.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  5:03 

I picture you as someone who has like, well, this is my evening coffee brand, right? This is my evening strain, like this is my go-to sleep coffee.

 

Bradley Cooper  5:12 

Yeah. A lot of people say like after three o'clock no coffee, not for me, anytime is right time. That's half the reason I stick around is the free coffee, you know?

 

Aaron Conant  5:24 

Just a quick reminder, anybody has questions along the way, drop into the chat, drop them into the q&a or email them to me aaron@bwgconnect.com. So as mentioned at the beginning, like AR, 3d, it's something that's popped up. A lot of people are dancing around the question right now. At what point did you say, hey, this is something we actually have to have? What did implementation time look like, I know was a question that's going to come in. So what is that like initial like, hey, aha, this is going to be worth it. We want to put it in. So kind of like the why. And then how long was it?

 

Andrew Potkewitz  6:06 

I think it probably makes sense to talk. I think there's a story behind where we got to a reset this is what we did. Maybe it's worth stepping back a little bit and talking about how we arrived there, right, how you guys sell, how Jura sells, the international footprint, the b2b, the DTC how that all works? I think it's an interesting journey you guys have been on? And certainly I think COVID was an expediter of some of these initiatives.

 

Bradley Cooper  6:33 

Yeah, no. And, to Aaron's point, I think one of the things that he said that resonated with me is that, there are folks out there who are kind of dancing around, is this the right strategy for me, is it not? I mean, we were right there prior to the pandemic, and it was something that Redstage was really excited about, and we were kind of thinking, well, there's a lot of things we want to do, and is this really going to be worth it? I think, to your point, COVID changed a lot of things for us. And it put a focus on our ECOM site, all of a sudden, in early 2020, customers who were used to going out into brick and mortar stores, retailers, and really kind of, like, touching and feeling our machines didn't have the opportunity to do that. I think, with our product, especially when you're talking about, I mean, look, we're a premium product with a premium price point. So, making a purchase, where you're going to invest two, three, 5,000 dollars in a coffee machine, losing that ability to kind of take a test drive, that was something that was a little bit scary early on. And I think that's really what helped us decide, like, hey, for us, this is a great way to kind of bring the showroom to our ECOM site. And I think that was when we really kind of decided to do it. We were also like in the process of migrating from the Magento1 to Magento2, Adobe commerce now, of course, but kind of all these things got accelerated very quickly, once the pandemic hit, and certainly that was a big factor for us.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  8:14 

Sorry, you touched a little bit on the platform itself. I know when the discussion started around moving, migrating off of M1 to something, there are certain features and business needs that really helped us arrive at Magento2 are now Adobe commerce as the right platform. Can you talk a little bit about, there's Jura, there's Compreso, there's b2b functionality, can you walk us through that a little bit?

 

Bradley Cooper  8:38 

Yeah, sure. So we do have a couple of brands. Jura Inc, is the distributor for Jura machines in the United States. We also have a sister brand Compreso. So we have the two stores under the same instance. And it's kind of like two very different customers with those brands. And for us, especially with shopjura.com, with our Jura brand, you know, that's where it really became something important for us. Because, again, it's like, I think there's a difference between buying, a Mr. Coffee Drip or, a drip coffeemaker, and then a machine that costs you up significantly more than that, from when you're ready to just kind of like, check out on an eCommerce site, right. And I think, that was where it really became like, okay, we need to be able to instill confidence in the consumer, not only just that they're going to have a safe and secure checkout experience, but I'm going to be able to make this investment and feel comfortable about it, without necessarily taking it for a test drive. So I think that was kind of the main thought process for us, especially with the Jura brand. And we have, like, a number of different things, our tech stack that we rely on. And that certainly came in handy, but I think, when it comes to augmented reality, the pandemic was what really kind of pushed us over the finish line for that one.

 

Aaron Conant  10:01 

Do you think that like part of it, just because of the brand, like in the experience that people are expecting, because thinking on the back end people are trying to determine, hey, is this the right investment for me? And once you get to a certain, like, I would say, luxury level, it's almost like the consumer demands a different experience now than they did before. And especially around the luxury brand. Are you seeing the same thing? Andrew, I'd love to hear from your side, because I know you guys are dealing with a ton of brands as well, not just Jura. Bradley, I'll kick that to you first, do you see that as something that was demanded? And was it on the b2b side more was on the direct consumer or both?

 

Bradley Cooper  10:42 

I'm sorry, you kicked it over to me Aaron?

 

Aaron Conant  10:44 

Yeah.

 

Bradley Cooper  10:45 

Yeah. For us, the main focus was on the b2c side. And to answer your questions, the luxury or the premium consumer expects a lot, and they should, right? I think the journey needs to be fun, it needs to be efficient, it needs to be exciting. But they also need information, they want to be romanced into buying this product, but they also need like a very efficient and informative experience when they visit the website. How am I going to get from point A to point B? So I think that's kind of like finding that balance. Look, regardless of whether you're a premium brand or not, I think, eCommerce managers, marketing teams, we struggle with that, right? Like, you want to be able to provide the most efficient stream of experience, but also get the customer the information that they're going to need the knowledge that they're going to need to have that checkout.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  11:42 

It's funny, you look at folks who tend to be early adopters versus laggards. And we've always known that b2b and enterprise has traditionally been slow to adapt to technology. But if you go over the hump from sort of direct to consumer brands, luxury has also been pretty slow, right? There was a long time, it was a slow evolution of luxury brands accepting and understanding and seeing the value in things like UGC, like ratings and reviews, does that dilute our brand? We don't want that. And selling online, if part of the value prop of a luxury brand is walking into Luis Vuitton or walking into a high-end coffee shop or coffee retailer, where you're getting the sort of white-glove experience and good being able to sample the coffees and they're making it for you, and you're getting the milk froth. How do you bridge that gap in the digital world where you lose that value add of the luxury buying experience? And I think, Jura did a really nice job of taking that leap with, can you talk a little about Bradley, sort of that the Jura Live and how you guys work sort of in-store demos and brought those online? So I think that was pretty...

 

Bradley Cooper  12:47 

Yeah, I'm glad you brought up Jura Live. Because I think that's another important aspect of what we do here. And Jura Live was actually launched prior to the pandemic. What Jura Live is, is it's a video chat session, where you can log on to shopjura.com, you can book an appointment with a product expert, and then link right into our studio, where we have all the machines set up, you can speak with this product expert, it's going to definitely help develop trust in the brand, because they're going to have this really great experience with a really knowledgeable person, and then they're going to be able to essentially do everything but taste the coffee. I think Jura Live was certainly once the pandemic hit, the popularity of that took off. That was also really great, because, again, as part of our migration to the newest version of Adobe commerce, Redstage had to help us build out that booking system and the appointment system that was fantastic. To make sure that the experience itself was good, easy to book appointments, and then having this ability to speak directly with the consumer. Again, I don't have the numbers in front of me because I know the focus on this is augmented reality and augmented reality ended up playing right into this Jura Live feature that we had, but I mean, I think we get like something like an 81% lift in conversions, but we can actually get someone to complete a Jura Live appointment. So that's been a big part of it. And obviously, when people couldn't go into a brick and mortar store, and like you said, actually, push the button and make that perfect cappuccino. It was really kind of the next best thing. And that was what really helped me get there with augmented reality because I said to myself, look, this is exactly the perfect extension of what we've started with Jura Live. Because now maybe that same customer even as the pandemic comes to an end now, I think we can all agree that consumer shopping habits have changed for many cases for Good. So, being able to offer these features lives is I think a great feature.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  15:07 

Yeah, maybe it's worth just because we sort of got to this point to share my screen really quickly.

 

Aaron Conant  15:12 

We have a couple people dropping in, like, can we see a demo? Can we see this on the Jura website?

 

Andrew Potkewitz  15:17 

Can you guys see my screen? Okay. So what we've got first year on the right-hand side is what Bradley was talking about, about the Jura Live, which enables you to chat with and book appointments for demos of the product. But when it comes to just move my panelists here, if you guys give me a second, we've got the product listing page here, I've already opened this window. So you can see we get into what the various products are, we pick on the Z 10, aluminum white, you see there's a load 3d option. So you click on that. So on desktop, you're able to manipulate the image and see the different various angles and all that great stuff. Obviously, in the product details, you'll get the dimensions of it. If folks have their mobile device out, if you want to scan this barcode, or this QR code, what you'll then be able to see and I'll pop over to my next tab, but you guys all still with me? You'll see in the top right on your mobile device, you'll see this little 3d Cube image. And when you click on that, you're able to place the product in your whatever room you're in. So this is the coffee machine. It's funny when I was taking this, right before this session, I realized there was some mail on my counter. So I went to move it, but I made sure to like, in my head, the coffee machine was actually there. So I maneuvered around it only to look away from my phone and realize there was no coffee machine there. But you can look at it vertically. You can look at it horizontally. It's funny, you say that I'm just going back to this page. So folks can scan this if they want to play around with it. I recently ordered some merch, some Redstage merch, some swag to bring out to a conference. And we got some pet merchandise, so little pet doggy bags, and some little silicone collapsible bowls. And I was really excited to get these like bowls because they look great. And they arrived. And I realized that I inadvertently bought like four-inch bowls for tiny dogs. And I thought I was buying like seven or eight-inch large-sized bowls. So when you start thinking about scale, and you're trying to figure out, how things will look in your living space, certainly, I use it all the time with Wayfair, for beds and couches and things that that are going to go in your plane.

 

Bradley Cooper  17:36 

Andrew, will you go back? I'm sorry. But will you go back to the product page for a moment? The PDP page, I'm sorry, and click that little wrench in the upper right-hand corner that pops up. You got a link right to the dimensions. So it'll give you that information, that first question that pops into your mind, will this fit on my countertop? But aside from just linking into the actual augmented reality, this is what I think a lot of people don't think about. There's other things you can do here. If you want, you can click the annotations button. And this is a really neat feature too, I think because, now again, you're kind of creating that virtual showroom, right on your PDP page, your calling out the important call to action, why do I need to buy this machine? Why do I need this in my house? And I think it's just kind of like a fast, easy and efficient way to get the customer this information. So, certainly, it's not just the idea of like spinning a 3d model around, which I think sometimes people get caught up on right. So that's something I think it's important to point out.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  18:46 

Yeah, no, it's a much more at the risk of sounding cliché, it's an interactive experience. But yeah, it's sort of like walking around the car in the showroom and looking at each feature and having someone explain what the benefits are that feature which is true, has tremendous value. And to what we're talking about the other day is if you are looking at a static web page of the product, and then you're offered this live demo, like there's some education in between, how do you go from this looks great to I want to spend my time to sit down for half an hour to think about buying a $4,000 coffee machine. And this is a really good intermediate step to say, you know what, this is really great. I'm interested in all this now and actually chat with someone about it and see more.

 

Bradley Cooper  19:35 

Yeah, it's a great way to kind of expand that funnel, right? It gets people in and you're getting them the information you need. You're developing trust with the brand with all these features. Because when you have pride in your website, you have these great features. I think it helps customers feel more comfortable making a big-ticket purchase online, and especially when hey, like I can click this tab on the side, I've checked out this machine, I've seen what it looks like on my kitchen countertop. I've got a few more questions, I can click right in and make an appointment with a live customer. So I think, all these things kind of work together. And it's been great for us.

 

Aaron Conant  20:17 

So a couple of questions that come in, which is, one, did you see a lift? I think at the end of the day, if somebody wants to install this. I mean, you want to return on investment? I know, it's impactful. So love to hear thoughts on that. Another thing that I just want to say, you just mentioned, like when you have pride in your website, like, that's really cool, right? We're at a stage where like, people are actually, they're fixing things in the back end, you're getting to a point where, like, you can like say, "Hey, I'm proud of what we've built here." And I think that's a key mindset inside ECOM departments as a whole, that you take pride in everything you're doing and what you're putting out there. So I really, I thought that was awesome. And then there's another question that comes in, this is great for high price luxury items. When you think about lower-priced items, what's the cost of producing this type of interaction on a single product? Does it scale well? So if we'll go to first like, conversions go up, good sales go up, it's always a nice to have, but it also did drive sales, I guess. I don't know, if you have any data you can share around that Bradley.

 

Bradley Cooper  21:30 

Yeah, that was the main question I was asking myself before we launched this, for sure. And I'm excited to share that we've seen really good results. So it just to give you guys an example, the first model that we launched with the augmented reality was a model called our GIGA 6. So this is like a $6,000 price point, it's our most expensive home residential machine. And we thought that naturally, that would kind of, it's probably the hardest conversion to get. So we thought that that would probably be the best place to start. In the six months, since launching on the GIGA 6, we saw a 28% lift in gross sales over the prior period for this model. And year over year, we saw a 65% lift in gross sales for the GIGA 6. So it was easy, the proof was in the pudding, and we recognize that very quickly. So after launching that, on the GIGA 6, and seeing, the immediate results, we continue to add more and more models to the platform, in the same six-month period, after launch, we saw a 15% lift, sitewide and eCommerce conversion rate year over year. So, for us, like, we've definitely seen the results in the numbers. I think some other KPIs that people might find interesting is a 21% lift in overall side transactions and a 36% increase in average order value during this period. So I think for a premium machine, absolutely, I think it's a no-brainer. The question about, is this something that is feasible for maybe, price points that aren't so high? I think so. Because I think also, like, when you have maybe a lower price point, or maybe a product that has a lot more competition in this space, then this is a great way to separate yourself from the competitor. I think whether you're a premium product or not, I think you can certainly find value in it. And I think, look, a lot of it also comes down to like, what's the cost to implement, and for us, it was pretty reasonable without getting into too many details, but there's lots of different ways that Redstage or other, that they can do it. So, and Andrew might be able to kind of speak to this as well, but it's like, you don't necessarily have to have someone come in and take pictures, if you have 3d assets available, or if you have really good image assets available, we were able to kind of work with a lot of assets that we had to create these in a more reasonable way. For some of our products, we thought it would be better to bring in the camera and take the 3d, the real live 3d images with a professional photoshoot, but there's definitely different ways that you can implement this. Whether you want to kind of like use it for a premium product, or for a product that's maybe not so high of a price point, I think there is a way to fit it in.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  24:26 

Yeah, I think there's a correlation, I think between the psychological lift of how difficult will this product be to return if I don't want it? And how willing you are to take a chance on something you're not super familiar with, right? A $5,000, three-foot box coffeemaker may be something that I don't know if I'm ready to tackle that sort of return process. There's the old retail adage that put the product in the customer's hand, right? And this is the closest you can come to doing that digitally. And there's a direct quote between how long that customer holds that tool at home depot, and their likelihood to buy it. So I think we've talked a little bit about their day by the time on site, time on PDP, and just having that engagement with them for an extended period of time, which helps drive that lift.

 

Bradley Cooper  25:18 

And no doubt we've seen lifts in overall time on site and time on PDP pages as well. Is definitely helping us get more engaged with our customers just like yourself.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  25:32 

And I imagine that we would also see fewer touchpoints needed in a shorter sales cycle there as well, because you're able to expedite that accelerate that sales cycle. Now, when it comes to how to do it, and what to use to do it, I think when we first started playing with this stuff four or five years ago, it could be cost-prohibitive, it really was it was new technology. But now, the beauty of our ecosystem is things become democratized and somewhat commoditized over time, and you've got a lot of options there. This particular case, we use Threekit, which is a great AR 3d modeling platform. There's other folks out there like season seven and Liquid Pixel and Duma and Planner there's a lot of options out there. So certainly you are best, you want to explore options there. But we're partners with and they're big fans of Threekit, they're a fantastic platform. But to Bradley's point timeline to go live what you actually need today versus what you needed in terms of assets three or four years ago, it's really a lot more affordable than it used to be. And I'm we're working with a high-end bedding merchant, sheets and what have you. And they were telling us, we first were talking with them, they spend like 80 or $90,000 a year on product photography, because they go out to these exotic places, they get a bed, they make it, it's luxurious. And then they have to strip the bed, remake it with other 18 other sheet colors that they have and retake that whole photoshoot. So even leveraging this type of technology to do color washing, which is advanced significantly in the past few years, it works for many merchants, we had a jewelry merchant who was like I can tell with my eye, that's not a real diamond, it's a washed-out color today, maybe it's not right for jewelry, or for your particular brand of jewelry, but I think we were able to end up saving them, like 60, or 70% on their total photography costs for their products, because they could just do it digitally. So if you have a large product catalog and a lot of variants on your products, it's absolutely worth exploring these types of technologies and approaches.

 

Bradley Cooper  25:47 

And I think that's what made it so attractive to us. Because, we were really, you know, able to kind of work with Redstage, let them know what we had as far as a budget, and like, we made it work. We've figured out a solution on how to do it. And yeah, we're a perfect example where we have, different models that have different colors. And that's why we were able to add it to so many different skews very quickly, because we took kind of a few base models and then digitally we were able to make really great renderings for all the different versions of that machine.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  28:19 

You are able to take bio reuse budget, right? This is not always an incremental cost. It's okay if we can not do a separate photoshoot. How much do we save and how much we put toward the digitalization of our catalog?

 

Aaron Conant  28:33 

Yeah, love it. I mean, you're right Andrew like Threekits, big fans of them. They're fantastic was just Bradley just rented them at the housewares show as well. They're doing some great things if anybody needs a connection over there, shoot me an email aaron@bwgconnect.com. But Andrew, you're talking, some things came into my mind around you think about KPIs, we think about conversion lift but you were touching on some things. Number one returns they see it fits on the shelf right or on the countertop, they see it even the color that actually is the brushed stainless the aluminum white so it seems like it would cut down on returns which could be a big savings especially if it's something bulky. The next one is the photography right in a question comes in do you share your digital assets that are used to create this experience with your retailers? I know a lot of brands are able to take then a con the actual product image and rotate it in any direction possible and new AB testing over and over again. And the last one that I wrote down so savings on photography with the other one is the customer service piece where you give them all the dimensions, they can spin it, they can see it, they can tap it all the numbers and then you're saving a phone call in are a follow-up experience if they got it. Those are like three things that I was pulling out of this conversation that goes beyond just conversion. It's actually can save a ton of money on the back end as well.

 

Bradley Cooper  29:59 

Sure And yeah, it's absolutely helped, and look, one of the things, it's like a balance for us, because we're also a growing brand. So, we're getting more customer service calls now than we did a few years ago, just because we have more interest in our product, and we have more machines out there than we did a few years ago, which is a great thing. But it definitely helps with these type of, I don't want to call them nuisance customer service calls. But if you can answer customers questions about features that are available on the model, color size, these are all things that consumers are interested in, before they purchase a product like ours, and you're definitely minimizing those type of requests, which then allows our customer service department to be more efficient, and actually take more of the calls where they need to help service a customer or maybe more sales-driven calls. So, it opens up from an efficiency standpoint, not just for our department, but also for the customer service department, no doubt about it.

 

Aaron Conant  31:06 

Either one of you, does it scale well, because I think, Bradley, you're saying, you started off with just one product, and then it went other places, are you using this to create images in content for retailers as well?

 

Bradley Cooper  31:25 

Yeah, so Jura does make available 3d models for select retailers. I'm in charge of direct to consumer, so selfishly, I'd like to keep it all for myself. But no, certainly, that's another aspect if that's kind of a better strategy for you,  no doubt about it.  I'm sorry, what was the first part of your question again, Aaron?

 

Aaron Conant  31:50 

How fast did you scale it out? Because it sounds like you started off with just one and then you win. And that seems like easily scalable, you don't have to roll it out.

 

Bradley Cooper  31:58 

The long period was, was certainly much more longer and drawn out than the actual execution. So once we got going with it, it was super easy. We did have the 3d models available. And like Andrew said, they were able to work with those. So for us, like, from the time that we started going full steam ahead with this project to the time that we had a live model on, I think it was a matter of weeks. Honestly, it was so fast that I can't even remember it being a pinch point or something that was bothersome to me, it happened very quickly. And then, that was kind of the other great thing about it, because the way that we were able to design it with Redstage is, the cost for just launching the one model was kind of like not so prohibitive, and we were able to see like, okay, is it not going to work. And once we figured out that it was working, we were able to scale it very quickly, because in some cases, it was just changing coloration. In other cases, it was just a matter of getting them the 3d assets so that they could work with it. And  that was the other thing I would say is it Redstage was really great about turning it around super quickly. Once we decided we wanted to do it, we had it up really quickly compared to a lot of projects that I work on.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  33:16 

But thanks for the very kind feedback on the Redstage team. So thanks for that Bradley and to your point, there's economies of scale here, right? Once you do the first one, the subsequent ones become quicker, because the teams know what essence the process is smoother. So you reap benefits ongoing as you roll them out. And also your point Bradley, try it with one, try it with your top product or topical products. And if you see the ROI, which seems this approach has tremendous ROI, then you can start investing more and more time once you can show the results to your team and your leadership.

 

Aaron Conant  33:58 

Did this tie into other things as well, the VR, the AR, the 3d, Spin images? Are there other things that you were thinking about as well? I'm just thinking outside of that. Are there other technologies or tactics that you are built using this to build off from? Or you implemented afterwards to kind of go hand in hand, other technologies that you added to the stack?

 

Bradley Cooper  34:22 

Yeah, I think, for us, like, there's, I think two ways to answer that question. Like, one, how do we tie it in during, especially that kind of, like, hot, heavy time during the pandemic where we saw our eCommerce business really take off. I think it was important for us to tie it in with email marketing, we used digital, we started to get a lot of feedback through our user-generated content in our reviews, where people would buy the product and then mention how cool it was that they were able to, like, see what it looked like on their kitchen countertop before they bought it. And then certainly, like I said, like that Jura Live. A video session was certainly an important part of it. I think as we look to the future, kind of the second part of that, yeah, now that we've done this,  I think for me with, look, I don't want to give away too much. But we're already thinking about like, what's the next step? Okay, now we've got 3d models, you can touch the machine, you can spin it, you can find out information, you can see what it looks like on your kitchen countertop. Now, how can we even make our site more interactive? How can we brew a cup of coffee right on the site, and then maybe, make an interactive feature that's, maybe a little bit more forward in the funnel, like on the homepage, that's going to get you to check out quicker, maybe, different ways to show recommended items with. I think we're going to take a look at what we can do with these 3d models and see how we can apply it in a natural next step for our site and adding new features down the road.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  35:57 

It's interesting, you mentioned digital, I also know that we're leveraging yacht po for UGC. And I find that really interesting first, because we talked a little bit about our I mentioned that the luxury brands and UGC and our ratings and reviews and pictures worthwhile and, and we finally, they can be that Jura allows for customers to provide their own pictures. And there's times where you actually leverage those on the PDP to let people see. And I think that that's such a powerful tool, because I think when I first started came on board at Redstage I learned about Jura was like, oh, these are commercial machines, right? Only a restaurant would have this, you look at a $4,000 machine, you're like, oh, that's a restaurant machine. And then you start seeing well, this is a picture of it in someone's home, you starts sort of making that association and well, you know, what this is not this is a residential machine. Some of these are. So there's a lot of value there on the UGC side for sure.

 

Bradley Cooper  36:52 

Yeah. And I think that's true of any product, I would say. I think what we've learned over the last number of months, or for longer than that, is that the user-generated content is important. It shows transparency, and it's almost just as important or tool as any, like pay per click, or any type of advertiser digital marketing that we would do and pay for. I think I really value it just as highlight. And certainly, yeah, like, I think this just encourages people to engage more with the brand, like you said. They see the machine, they use on the product page for the first time, they engage with the augmented reality feature, we get to the conversion, now they're coming back to the site, and they're sharing their feedback and what the, the machine actually looks like, on their kitchen countertops. So I think all these things work together. And that's what it's all about, it's kind of like, building the brand in different ways to connect with your customer build trust with your customer. And I think all these things do that really well together.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  38:00 

It's sort of the coffee equivalent of posting your new Louis Vuitton sneakers on your Instagram page, right? It's your beautiful kitchen and your high-end coffee machine. Now the other technology, which I find really exciting and interesting is sort of in card financing, buy now pay later, I think you guys are using bread for that. I remember when and it wasn't in the too distant past where there was this, that's a good solution for sort of mid-price items, right? If you're buying a $4,000 coffee machine, you shouldn't have to do buy now pay later, sort of the mentality a few years ago, but if you talk a little bit about what you guys are seeing on the buy now pay later front with financing?

 

Bradley Cooper  38:40 

Yeah, no, I think it's really been a fun one, it's opened up our product to a younger audience. Because I think, younger people are kind of more tuned into the buy now pay later mantra, to be honest, and it's probably a better payment solution for them than paying all at once. And I also think like for any product, it's beneficial. Because, in this day and age, consumers have so many options, and I'll relate it just to say to our coffee machines, right? Our coffee machines are premium price points, how do you convince a customer who is either going to Starbucks or maybe interested in a competitor's brand, that term is going to be the one for you. Well, one we want to give you as many options to make it affordable to you and being able to pay for it over time is a great solution for a lot of people and then the germ machine itself is a good investment because it pays for itself over time when you can kind of save on expensive prepackaged things like pot or going to Starbucks every day and spending 20 $25 to buy coffees for your whole family. And then when you can offer the buy now pay later payment option, it makes that even more justifiable in the eyes of the consumer because they're saying to yourself, I pay 15 bucks a month for Netflix and then $60 for my cell phone, it's something that's attainable to them, they can do it. And it makes a lot of sense to them. I think we all have these monthly things that a lot of times we don't I don't even think about it comes right off my card. And it increases the entertainment value in my life or increases my quality of life. So I think it's a great solution, especially for younger customers.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  40:28 

We should build out a calculator that's like, how many cups of coffee do you get a day from your local coffee shop? And what does that cost you over the course of a year,

 

Bradley Cooper  40:37 

We have that calculator.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  40:40 

My disclaimer is that I'm relatively new to the project. So I didn't know that.

 

Bradley Cooper  40:45 

I'm saying, it's not on the site. So it's not your fault. But no, absolutely. I think the average consumer probably drinks about two to three cups of coffee a day, if you're paying five to $6 for that beverage, and you do that 200 times a year, in the end, a Jura machine can be a great investment for you, because it's gonna save you a lot of money in the long run, you're going to be paying pennies on the dollar every time you push that button and make your coffee.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  41:14 

It's also that satisfaction. Yes, you can go to the deli and get a sandwich. But like when you make it yourself, it sort of tastes better sometimes. Because you put the effort in, and it's sort of it's crafted to your precise liking.

 

Bradley Cooper  41:27 

I think for a lot of products, right? Like people are enjoying more time in their own home. And yes, we're moving on from the pandemic. But whether you're in kitchenware’s, whatever the case may be, I think that focus of enjoying the time you have in your home is an important one for us to certainly focus on during the heart of the pandemic. But I think to continue to focus on that, because again, I think customers habits have changed over the last two years.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  41:55 

It's funny, when we were still in office, we're now I'm now remote. But when I was in office in New York, we had coffee machines there. So I didn't have a coffee machine at home, because that's where I got my coffee. And then six months into the pandemic, I think I need a coffee machine because I'm not drinking coffee anymore. So we got one and I recently got married and a cousin got us a really nice coffee machine. But the milk frother I now find myself in the morning, taking a picture of the coffee I made. And then I'm texting it to my cousins to be like, it's this strain this brand, this flavor. And I'm like I'm all of a sudden, like engaged in like the coffee community, which is something I never even thought existed. But it's real, right?

 

Bradley Cooper  42:38 

Yeah, absolutely. And I mean, that's why we focus to all those things, like you said, like through our email marketing, through our user-generated content, through our social media, it's about the experience. And I think that approach has been really good for our brand.

 

Aaron Conant  42:54 

It's super interesting that your time, the cost of this stuff is all coming down. And then different ways to view it than we did even two years ago. I mean, it's kind of an older stat, but it was something like 60% of 18 to 38-year-olds don't have a credit card. And so this idea that, they're literally using buy now pay later, like everybody else uses a credit card. So that idea of pay, you wouldn't do buy now pay later on a $5,000 machine, but you would use a credit card, that's how a younger audience is using buy now pay later, like a credit card. And that's why you see like a lot of these being offered in stores now where you can use it because they realize a lot of people don't even have a credit card. But then so that idea of wait a minute, I should have buy now pay later on my site of in there's a ton of different suppliers out there. And I think the average number of payments now on a checkout is eight. So maybe you should have more than one. But then UGC and how do you get it in? Well, there's a platform for that, like you're mentioning this 3d, AR imaging, there's a platform for that. Everything has come down, and it's a lot easier to implement. I think at the end of the day, you still need a great partner, right? I mean, I think that's where the team at Redstage comes in, as well. I'll kick that over to you Bradley, like, do you do this without a Redstage?

 

Bradley Cooper  44:20 

No doubt about it. I mean, like I said, I came from a more traditional marketing background, I was the product manager prior to taking over ECOM. And I was excited when I took the job. I mean, when I was offered the job, there was a lot of unknown though. I was excited but I was also like, I relied on Redstage to learn a lot about what is possible. And what I did is took my passion for the product and for the brand, and I shared that with them. And Redstage was able to kind of ponit me in the right directions of how we can translate that onto our eCommerce site for revenue dropping. And it's been a good relationship. So, certainly, they've been invaluable to me since I came on in 2018.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  45:16 

Oh, shucks, Bradley. Thanks for the positive feedback.

 

Aaron Conant  45:22 

The newest things that you guys are working on right now. So we talked about buy now put has been around for a while, but obviously, we need that on there, UGC ratings reviews. But this augmented reality, 3d is something that's relatively new, are there other cool things that are popping up that are on your radar, that you're helping people out with? Maybe it's not something needs to be implemented right now. People should start investigating.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  45:49 

I'm thinking lasers. So I'll leave it to you, Bradley. Sorry.

 

Bradley Cooper  45:53 

Yeah, but no, I think, that's the great thing about working with a partner like Redstage is that, they're not shy about sharing ideas with me. And I think when something piques my interest, it's a great thing to kind of have that back and forth in that brainstorming. We're always talking about what the next steps are. I think most important thing is not to focus too much on what you've already accomplished, you need to be able to keep moving forward in order to stay current. And yeah, absolutely. We've got some things in the pipe. Like I said, I think, for me, like my biggest challenge over the next few years is how can I get more people into the funnel quicker, and different ways that we can do that and leverage that. And I think, being able to have more interactive banners, interaction with machines on-site, on the website, I should say, is something that I'm looking for the future as far as the next steps for us.

 

Aaron Conant  46:52 

Andrew on your side, and then if others, if you have questions, drop them in the chat the q&a, or you can email them to me, we kind of get to last few minutes here. Andrew, like things that are peeking your interest right now like lasers?

 

Andrew Potkewitz  47:04 

Lasers are always one. No, actually, there's something that I want to chat with you about probably next week, which is the interactive video platform, which could be another really powerful tool, asynchronous streaming, but user journeys, like the old NFU, if you're familiar with, with Black Mirror, there's the Bandersnatch episode where the decision nodes come up, and you can decide what path to go down. For us for my contemporaries would be Choose Your Own Adventure book, but in video form, so it's scalable, it's cool stuff. But this is the world we live in now. The challenges that we sort of talked about and thought about two half years ago are now here, right? This is not a postcode world, it's a COVID world, and buying behaviors have changed forever, and things got accelerated. So I think the more interactive and engaging you can be with their digital property, the more you can build your brand. And I think there's another sort of silver lining to this rush to digital over the past two years,  especially for brands that have been historically b2b, heavy, which is you know where your customers are, you have the data to see where they're logging in from and where they're coming to your site from. So as a brand that also has a b2b presence, you can say, hey, it looks like Missoula, Montana, people are loving the GIGA 7, let's let the people who are your outlets and retailers there know that there's a lot of popularity there, let's make sure that they're ordering up on this product. So you're able to get a lot more customer-specific data now than you ever could, as a large brand. And then there's a lot going on in the SMS space. That's certainly a space over the past couple years, that's become increasingly important as a channel, I started looking at it like, we as marketers, we kill channels, that's what we do, right? We find a channel, we leverage it and at some point, people get tired of it, we have to find a new channel. Yes, the message is important. Time is important to be sensitive to people's work-life balance, etc. But if email has been sort of at the front door you've been knocking on for a very long time, SMS is like, well, this is the side door for folks who actually give you their personal data and their phone number. They're like, listen, it's okay, if you come knock on my side or my window, like, we're good like that. So there's a good strategy there to leverage both email and SMS sort of automated workflows to get attention.

 

Bradley Cooper  49:37 

Awesome. And I think one last thing, just to kind of wrap it up, I mean, for us, I think that's also why we're so happy to be on Adobe commerce because it really is kind of like an open platform. If you have this passion, if you have something that you think of, and you want to make it happen, you can make it happen. And we have a great partner with Redstage that kind of helps you that through. So for us, I think we've been really happy all around. I think the continued focus on our direct to consumer business, the different b2b options like Andrew just mentioned for the future, all of these things are possible. And we're looking forward to it.

 

Aaron Conant  50:17 

Awesome. And I see we're pretty much right here at time. So, again, Bradley, thanks so much for your time today and being open to share it. Andrew, as always, you guys are great friends, partners, supporters of the network. If anybody needs follow-up, you know, conversations on this across the board, more than happy to connect you with both Bradley and Andrew. If you're looking for more on the agency side, some direct help for sure, we can connect you with the read stage team. We'll be doing a lot of events with them this year, for sure. More than happy to make those connections. And on my side, I'd love to have a conversation with you as well. That's where we get the topics for these calls. So for a follow-up email for me, we can set aside a half an hour. If you're going to be in a tier-one city, let us know we'll invite you to one of our small-format dinners, usually 15 to 20 brands are on the table having a great conversation with that. We're going to wrap it up. Hope everybody has a fantastic Thursday. Have a great rest of the week. Everybody take care, stay safe and look forward to having you at a future event. Awesome. Thanks, Bradley. Thanks, Andrew.

 

Bradley Cooper  51:05 

Good to see you guys. Thank you.

 

Andrew Potkewitz  51:07 

Keep thinking of Bradley to Mike and Aaron and Chris and Carol from Adobe and all the folks participated it helps us set this up, so keep saying some Bradley the biggest thank you to you really appreciate your ongoing support.

 

Bradley Cooper  51:19 

No problem guys, it was a pleasure.

 

Aaron Conant  51:21 

That's a blast. Take care.

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