Outdoor Voices Aims to Use AR To Get Customers Outside

New OV Trail Store encourages customers to hit the running trail.

It was noted when Pokemon Go released that many people were drawn by the app into exploring the outdoors, with crowds of people hunting for elusive Pokemon in parks or public spaces and engaging in ‘Pokewalks’. Outdoor-wear retailer Outdoor Vices is also engaging with augmented reality (AR) to sell its product and get customers enjoying some fresh air.

Outdoor Voices began as an online-only retailer before it expanded into brick-and-mortar stores. Far from attempting to entice customers into its stores, however, the company is using AR to direct customers to outdoor trails and running paths.

The new app from Outdoor Voices is titled OV Trail Shop, which has been created to get customers out exploring and exercising on running trails in their area. Those downloading the app is directed to the closest OV Trail Shop spot. Once there, customers can browse through a selection of activewear in close up.

The locations were apparently selected to appeal to customers who already shopped with Outdoor Voices, and fifty running paths were selected as OV Trail Shop spots. The focus of the AR app on getting people outdoors and engaged in activities seems to fit the company’s ethos, which involves creating communities.

The CEO of Outdoor Voices Tyler Haney told Retail Dive that the funding it received from a recent funding round would be used: “To scale the community we’ve built around Doing Things. This includes continuing to build shops and host events in new cities across the country, and reaching an expanded audience online.”

The company raised $34 million (USD) as part of a Series C funding round which closed last month. The round was led by GV (formerly known as Google Ventures), with other funding coming from General Catalyst, Forerunner Ventures, Collaborative Fund and 14W.

The OV Trail Shop app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store. For continued coverage of use of AR in retail and business, keep checking back with VRFocus.

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