E-commerce Link: Show and Sell
4) Interactive redecorating. Perhaps the most dramatic use of dynamic imaging is the interactive real-time switching of colors, patterns and textures. The Home Depot has made this feature famous through its online Kitchen & Bath Design Center. Here, you are presented with a baseline image of a room, and you have options to change the color, texture and pattern of the floor, cabinets, walls and other fixtures. There are hundreds of thousands of possible combinations in the demo alone.
The Home Depot did not build thousands of different rooms and take pictures of each. Dynamic imaging technology allowed it to outline key areas—the cabinets, for example—and provide color swatches for each color option. One advanced feature on the Home Depot tool even allows the realistic rendering of different textures or designs. Color, texture and pattern rendering is very popular with apparel sites, allowing several color options to be presented via a single photograph. Costs for photography can be significantly reduced, and new color options can be posted online in a fraction of the time.
The possibilities of dynamic imaging are limited only by your imagination and your merchandising strategy. Whether you tie in your Web site data or set all image parameters manually, it could revolutionize the way you look at online merchandising. Dynamic imaging puts visual merchandising in the hands of your professional merchandisers, allowing you to update images and messaging whenever necessary, and enabling you to create exactly the right image for any merchandising situation.
Ken Burke is president and CEO of Multimedia Live, an e-commerce technology and development company based in Petaluma, Calif. He can be reached at (707) 773-3434 or firstname.lastname@example.org.