Kingston art gallery goes 3D

KINGSTON — An art gallery in downtown Kingston is offering a new way for customers to shop, by offering a 3D shopping experience on their store’s website.

Martello Alley sits just off Princess Street selling local artisan pottery and art for the last six years.

Owner David Dossett says the customer base would usually consist of lots of shoppers wandering in, or tourists, looking to buy local art as a souvenir.

Dossett says his sales took an 80 per cent hit when the pandemic forced them to close during each stay-at-home order.

“I thought we better do something that’s original,” he said.

Enter 3D online shopping – Where customers bring up the stores website, and can move through it, as if they’re really walking through the store.

If you see something you like, you click on it, and it will bring you to a page to have it shipped to your front door.

“This seemed to be the best way to do it that would provide customers a pleasant experience and one as close as possible to actually being in our store,” Dossett said.

He says he was inspired by real estate companies using the technology to sell homes. And thought he could apply the same thing to his business.

“I finally got that ah-ha moment…because we have such nice visuals inside and outside, why not let people take advantage of them and let people explore it virtually” Dossett said.

For new shoppers, Dossett has also put up a ‘How To’ video to help themfollow along.

Dossett says it took about 24 hours, and purchasing a 3D camera to make it as professional as possible.

But he says it’s worth it, as it’s brought a lot of happy customers. He says sales have gone up, even higher than he’d seen before the pandemic.

“It’s been a real game changer for us,” he says. “And it’s been fun a lot of fun doing it.”

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