3D product visualization has been growing in popularity among many industries recently. With this 3D process, businesses can reduce defects, create virtual prototypes, and produce marketing material without the product. All these help companies save a lot of time and money.

If product visualization has been on your mind, or if you are at all curious about this process and wondering if it is right for your business, you’re in luck! We’ll help you know more about the topic, and then you can better comprehend if product visualization is suitable for you.

Now then, let’s begin, shall we?

What is 3D product visualization?

3D product visualization is the process of converting your 2D images of your product in a photo-realistic manner, allowing your customers to engage with your product. The process involves 3D modeling, texturing, and rendering. Its main goal is to help customers visualize a product in ways that are not possible with mere text descriptions and images.

You can use product visualization to display your products in numerous ways, like VR-based product showcases, AR-based product showcases, photorealistic images, animations, and 3D product configurators. Below are some of the benefits of using this process:

  • Gives superior product presentations.
  • Allows customers to “try” before buying the item.
  • Boosts sales with attractive product presentations.
  • Reduces return rates as customers can accurately visualize the item before purchase.
  • Improves team inter-communication.
  • Allows for easy customization.
  • It boosts creativity, as designers can experiment with different design possibilities.
  • Encourages new product experimentation without wasting time or money.

Now that we understand what 3D product visualization is, let’s see which industries benefit from this technique.

Which industries benefit from it?

  • Manufacturing and product design

    Manufacturers and engineers often deal with complicated product components. And it is not easy to communicate the specifications and requirements through mere drawings and product images. With 3D product visualization, they can create accurate and easy-to-understand product replicas to communicate these requirements and specifications.

    As these models are easy to customize, manufacturers can use them to make different variations of the product to test new design options and features.

    Companies can also convert the models into digital prototypes to test for potential flaws and hazards. Because they can test digital prototypes, companies don’t have to make physical prototypes, which takes money, time, and effort.

  • Architecture, interior design, and construction

    Industry professionals use product visualization to construct detailed and accurate visuals of their project designs. Realistic props help highlight the exteriors and interiors in a way that makes it easy to understand complicated site maps. Some companies use 3D walkthroughs to aid in the client’s visualization of the layout, interior design, lighting, and other project aspects. Clients can easily spot issues or request changes to the design that will suit their style and taste before construction begins.

    By using product visualization, companies can also produce 3D-rendered images and videos for their marketing and promotion efforts. With these photorealistic visuals, it is easier to attract potential customers and investors before construction even begins.

  • Entertainment

    Various entertainment industry segments have benefited from the 3D visualization process. Nowadays, you will see that many movies, TV shows, VR simulations, etc. use 3D and CGI elements. That is because they help create effects, stunts, and other-worldly characters that are difficult to do in real life or are too costly.

  • Gaming

    The gaming industry has grown immensely over the years. Although video games have been around for decades, Atari’s Pong was the one that helped kickstart the video game industry upon its release in 1972. It was the first commercially successful arcade game. Pong is a simple arcade table tennis game with two rectangles for bats, one square for a ball, and a dotted line for a net. Although it isn’t (considering today’s standards), Pong set the stage for Space Invaders, Pac-Man, and many more games to come.

    Nowadays, 3D visualization is making it possible for game designers to create photorealistic game assets with life-like textures and details. And with AR and VR in vogue, artists are encouraged to come up with game experiences that are more realistic and immersive.

  • Cinema and TV

    Cinema and TV showmakers use this technique to make sets, character designs, vehicles, weapons, imaginary creatures, etc., that are otherworldly. Computer-generated elements are often used to bring to life imaginary creatures and worlds, stage dangerous stunts, or augment the viewing experience.

    An excellent example of a movie using 3D elements would be James Cameron’s Avatar (2009). He used 3D imagery and advanced stereoscopic filming to materialize a new world, its inhabitants, weaponry, etc. Avatar was so revolutionary that it is still widely considered to be the best 3D movie ever.

  • Public attractions

    Theme parks have been integrating new visual technologies to captivate customers for a long time. They’re now using 3D, AR, and VR to pioneer new ways to augment the customer experience, so they feel like coming back for more. Let’s look at the example of the Disney theme parks. They’re quite well-known for coming up with unique ways to entertain their visitors with the help of the latest technologies. They stop at nothing to make their customers feel like they have entered another world.

    One of their attractions that uses 3D technology is Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway. It’s a ground-breaking, trackless ride that takes visitors through scenes taken from a vast array of Disney shorts.

    Museums, on the other hand, have struggled to get customers through the front door. Their biggest competition is no other museums, but entertainment options like Netflix and Candy Crush. So, many museums have taken to using 3D technology to attract more customers.

    ​Some general ways museums use this technology are:

    • Using interactive 3D floor plans to help visitors navigate the museum.
    • Educating visitors about exhibits with the help of interactive displays.

    A shining example of this is the Paris Louvre’s Mona Lisa: Beyond the Glass. It’s a VR experience where visitors can closely explore and experience Renaissance paintings in a digital setting.

  • Retail and eCommerce

    Retailers and online stores find 3D product visualization super useful in many ways, particularly when it comes to marketing and promotions. In eCommerce, many sellers use 3D models to give customers a 360-degree view of products, so they get a complete mental picture.

    Through 3D modeling, you can create a three-dimensional version of your merchandise for an interactive product visualization. Use product configurators and 360-degree views so customers know what to expect when they receive it in the mail. You can also elevate their shopping experience with AR and VR experiences that allow them to “try” a product before buying it.

    Amazon and IKEA are some of the prime examples for this. Each company has its own eCommerce app that integrates 360-degree product views and AR. With this, customers get the ability to “place” products in their real environment to see how the products look.

  • Fashion, apparel, and jewelry

    Trends in the fashion industry change several times each year. So, for them to compete with all the other brands, they must be able to create designs, manufacture products, and market them as quickly as possible. 3D visualization helps them achieve all these goals while also reducing costs and return rates.

    Using this 3D process, designers can easily bring their concepts to life and get them to the production line quickly. Besides, designing using 3D product visualization leads to fewer flaws and defects, resulting in lesser material waste and return rates. Visualization tools like 3D product configurators allow customers to personalize the products.

    Let’s look at Nike, for example. They have a tool called Nike by You, which lets customers personalize any Nike shoe of their choosing before purchase. Similarly, Japanese fashion brand Kashiyama allows their customers to create their own bespoke pieces before checkout.

  • Healthcare and life sciences

    Using a combination of 3D visualization, MRI and CT scans, and 3D printing, device-makers can produce medical devices like pacemakers, implants, prosthetics, etc.

    As this technique accurately accounts for an individual’s unique features, it leads to accurately designed parts and devices.

    Apart from this, product visualization also helps developers in the medical field test digital prototypes of life-saving equipment on digital organs.

Summing up…

As you’ve seen, there are several benefits to using 3D product visualizations in various industries. It’s true, particularly if your business is in manufacturing, retail, eCommerce, fashion, or entertainment.

If you want to adopt this technology to further your business goals, you can always outsource your needs to 3D service providers. With 3D, your future will be bright!

Christa Elrod linkedinDribbbleBehance

Christa Elrod serves as a senior graphic designer at ProGlobalBusinessSolutions. She is a creative designer with robust skills in typography, UI/UX designs, printing designs, video post-production, and 3D designs. Possessing years of experience across diverse industries, Christa loves to educate fellow designers with her experience and domain knowledge.