Retailers need to embrace artificial intelligence and augmented reality if they want shoppers to continue using their apps, new research has found.

The study by mobile app developer Apadmi found that nearly 30 per cent of consumers would like to see more innovation in mobile apps so they provide a better, more personalised shopping experience.

Shoppers surveyed said they would be more likely to download a retail app if it featured technology that helped them to make a buying decision or let them preview products before purchase.

Nick Black, CEO of Apadmi, said: “While consumers are more willing to shop via a retail app than ever before, retailers need to do more to offer the kind of personalised and interactive experience they expect.

Augmented reality and artificial intelligence are reshaping the shopping experience and how consumers can interact with brands.

“The possibility of a more personalised shopping experience and a chance to ‘try before you buy’ excites customers and, as our research suggests, those retailers that invest in these technologies are likely to put themselves ahead of the competition.

“Mobile apps will play a major role in retail’s future but the companies that innovate and are willing to explore the latest technology are more likely to meet the expectation among consumers going forward.”

For the research Apadmi surveyed 2,000 consumers who use retail apps to find out what they expect from apps and what they would like to see more of in the future.

More than a quarter (26 per cent) said they would like to see retailers implement AI tools in shopping apps, particularly if they help to remember past purchases and recommend products and deals based on shopping history.

Nearly a fifth (18 per cent) also think that AI in retail apps, like chatbots or digital assistants, would be a good improvement and that retailers should investigate introducing these tools into apps.

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Almost a third of consumers (29 per cent) believe retailers should invest more in augmented and virtual reality platforms.

One of the main reasons why they want these features is because they could allow them to see how big or small items are before buying them (33 per cent).

Nearly one in three (29 per cent) said they would use AR to see how to use a product before they bought it, while a quarter would use AR to preview product customisations, such as different colours or designs, before purchase.

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