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Customization Versus Personalization... What’s the Difference?

Customization and personalization, two of the biggest buzzwords in sales and marketing today. But is there a difference between the two, and if so, what is it? 

While often used interchangeably, there is a difference between personalization and a customization, particularly when we are talking about options in ecommerce. 

Here’s a helpful way to think about the difference between customization and personalization: 


Customization is determining the form of the product from available set of options, such as colors, materials, and added features.


Personalization, on the other hand, speaks more to making something more personal to you. This could mean extending from the standard set of available options to get a unique emblem, logo, or initials added to personalize your item. 

Personalization in marketing broadly refers to any action that a brand does to tailor the experience to a specific customer. This includes efforts such as product recommendations, names in emails, and decisions on how they want to hear from the brand. Many view this as a "customized" experience, which also adds to the confusion between personalization and customization. 

Let's take a closer look at customization versus personalization in ecommerce with some examples.

Customization Versus Personalization in Ecommerce

Many ecommerce brands offer a variety of SKUs for their products, giving shoppers options to make that product fit their needs. To illustrate the difference between personalization and customization in apparel, we can look at a brand that makes leather jackets. 

best 3D product configurators

In this example, buyers have options for the type of leather they want the jacket made in and the color. They also have options for the types of lining of the jacket and whether they want additions such as studs or patches from a specific collection. 

Choosing these options from a set list is an example of customization; the buyer is customizing the jacket to their specific taste. 

Now let's say that instead of only offering the standard patches, the company allows a buyer to embroider their initials on the back or add text to the heart patch already available. These are examples of personalization. The user is inputting their own text onto an existing product. In the case of the personalized heart patch, the buyer is combining both customization and personalization.

3d product customizer



3D Product Customizers for Ecommerce

Th ability to customize products to specific tastes is a hugely poplar option among consumers, and has recently become more of an expectation than a nice to have.

Consumer demand does not stop at customization however; more and more consumers are looking not only for options, but for better ways to view those options. When given the option, 60% of consumers say that they would like to be able to view products in 3D and augmented reality (AR), and they are willing to pay 20% more for the brands who deliver that experience. 

Why are buyers willing to pay more for a product they can experience in 3D? The answer lies largely in the increased confidence they feel when they are able to view the product from angles that may be missed by traditional product photography; this is particularly true when looking at a customized product. Brands may offer several options for a product, but in many cases they do not capture product imagery of all of the options, or they rely on photoshopping color changes to give the customer an idea of that it will look like. For products that offer more than one customizable option, it is nearly impossible to showcase all of the variations a consumer can choose. 

This is where a 3D product customizer benefits both the buyer and the brand. 3D product customizers, or 3D product configurators, allow buyers to view the exact choices they have selected in high fidelity 3D, providing them with an accurate and life life view of what the product will look actually look like. Buyers receive a better buying experience, and feel more confident in their purchases, and brands spend less time and resources shooting countless product photos to update on the website. 

For many consumer products, the 3D experience can be extended into augmented reality, allowing the buyer to further engage with the model of their design, instead of a stock option that may appear quite different from their chosen design. 


How To Add A 3D Product Customizer To A Website

There are several ways to add a 3D product customizer to a website, but the easiest approach is to leverage a tool such as ATLATL to seamlessly integrate a 3D customization experience into an existing website.   

ATLATL provides a ready to launch platform on which brands can build exceptional consumer shopping experiences, without the heavy lifting by developers that many web based experiences require. The platforms integrated tools also allow brands to quickly launch augmented reality alongside their 3D customizers, giving buyers two ways to interact and view the products in high fidelity 3D. 


Ready to see how 3D customization can take your brand experience to a new level? Get in touch with us!

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