Metaverse in retail: what are the possibilities?

Earlier this year, American billionaire Mark Zuckerberg explained that the future of his company, Meta, lies in the “metaverse.” This term immediately became popular, which caused the interest of companies around the world in the new venture of the founder of Facebook.

First of all, it is important to clarify that Zuckerberg did not coin the term. American writer Neal Stephenson first used the word, in his novel Snow Crash, in 1992.

The United States does not exist in the book. Instead of a state, there are several city-states controlled by the local elite. It is in this dystopian world that the protagonist of the story, Hiro the Protagonist, is divided between two activities: that of a deliveryman and that of a warrior.

In the real world, he’s a pizza delivery boy. In the metaverse, he is a samurai fighting a virus that threatens both worlds. Unlike Stephenson’s novel, the future of the metaverse in our reality promises to be very promising, helping to create jobs and sales. But how will that be possible?

Metaverse in retail

In practice, the metaverse can be understood as the evolution of the Internet, as if we can enter the Web and not just see it on a screen. For example: instead of browsing a shopping page, a customer will be able to visit a furniture store in the metaverse, see furniture, decor options and chat with sellers in real time.

For this, both buyers and sellers will have to use augmented reality equipment, such as the well-known 3D glasses. Furthermore, the company will have to build its space within the metaverse.

Marcelo Vieira is a marketer, tech enthusiast and metaverse expert. He talks about the possibilities that the metaverse brings to companies and how this idea already existed in our society, albeit in an embryonic stage. “The term metaverse, despite seeming new and abstract, is already very old and comes from the 90s. Metaverse is nothing more than a simulation of a real environment, within a virtual environment, and games already do that. Social networks, in a way, , I can consider a metaverse,” he says.

He also explains that not every store will need a huge investment to adapt to this new world. “A lot depends on which metaverse the company decides to invest in. There are several metaverse platforms, some need high performance computers (players/designers) to run, like Second Life and simpler platforms like Facebook’s new proposal, Meta. Facebook’s Meta is a platform that will work on mobile phones, using VR glasses and gloves that are significantly cheaper than gaming computers,” says the expert.

In an interview with Mobile merchantsays something that can cheer up traders, especially small entrepreneurs.

Credits: personal file

“A company that sells through the metaverse does not necessarily have to invest in IT. The platforms already exist, most of them are ready and running for more than 18 years, including companies that are installed and sold worldwide.”

Marcelo Vieira, metaverse expert

Investments in Brazil

The technology market has already been very heated since the start of the pandemic, forcing companies to digitize most of their activities. Now the metaverse will require an even more skilled workforce in this sector.

For example, Meta aims to train around 50,000 Brazilians by 2023 to work in metaverse-related technologies.

“We have seen the positive impact that digital platforms have had in recent years, helping small businesses find their clientele and grow. We want to continue encouraging access to this virtuous circle through the training of people in socially vulnerable situations, whether it is young people taking the first steps in their career or experts looking for a replacement on the labor market. Looking to the future, we see many opportunities with the development of the metaverse and now we want to contribute to the preparation of these professionals”, says Carol Ferracini, Head of Public Policy Program at Meta for Brazil.

In issue 392 of the Móbile Lojista magazine, we bring a full report on this topic, with even more details, research and data! read now!

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