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Should I cloud stream my configurator or use WebGL?

This article is part of our 'What makes a configurator that converts?' insight series.

When it comes to building an interactive 3D configurator for your product, you’re probably wondering which tech to use: cloud-streaming or WebGL. While WebGL may be seen as the low cost solution for showing 3D graphics and animations online, it simply can't match the quality, agility, or realism that cloud-streaming can deliver.

A cloud-streamed configurator allows for real-time product customisation by streaming visual 3D data from a remote server to a user's device (just like Netflix), providing an immersive, interactive experience that builds confidence and drives conversions. Customers can configure their product on any device, well within the average 6 second bounce time of a typical OEM configurator, which is essential given that 70% of customers say that slow download speeds impact their willingness to buy online (Deloitte, 2020). 

Cloud-streaming allows for more detailed, believable models, animations, and features without sacrificing performance, a critical factor considering the configurator’s primary goal is to accurately represent the physical product. Additionally, it is significantly more practical, enabling you to offer all configurations for all markets, interior and exterior views, as well as multiple worlds for the vehicle to live in, without additional loading times. Cloud-streaming also comes out on top for model security, future-proofing, brand consistency, and high-resolution displays. 

However, this isn’t to say that WebGL can’t provide engaging complementary experiences at other lower complexity configuration touchpoints in the customer journey. Lightweight AR experiences, for example, can surprise and delight customers by letting them play with and evaluate their configured vehicle in the real world. Experiences like this can lead to a 94% higher conversion rate (Deloitte, 2021).

Ultimately, if you want to build a configurator that converts, it needs to be cloud-streamed. By using cloud-streaming technology, you can give your customers the experience they deserve and increasingly expect, and create a high-performance configurator that delights the customer, drives conversions and builds brand loyalty. 

Remember, your configurator’s primary purpose is to drive a high value decision, which is something that a ‘tick box’ WebGL 3D experience simply can’t achieve.

Discover what else makes a configurator that converts with our in-depth report.

Deloitte (2020): 'Milliseconds Make Millions'
Deloitte (2021): 'Snap Consumer AR Global Report 2021'