Maybe you don’t?
A Google Virtual Tour may not be right for your business – not every business will benefit from having one…
But for others – it’s more a question of “Why didn’t I know about this sooner?”
Having the same technology that everybody knows and uses – Google Maps and Google Earth. People have seen their street, the place they’re going on holiday, finding locations on the map – and that very same technology that is used by Google with their StreetView Cars to photograph the roads – is now used to photograph the inside of their business.
The Main businesses that will benefit from having a tour – are those that have a front door and rely on customers to walk through it.
These are the types of businesses that rely on high foot traffic every day. An online virtual tour attracts new customers by showcasing your place – it helps with familiarity when your customers get there – where to park, where to go, what to do, where to sit, eat, drink, sleep, buy…. If the customer sees this beforehand and they like what they see – they are more than twice as likely to visit in person.
It has a positive side-effect too, which is often overlooked. If you have a tour, and your business looks good online – people will visit and often leave a positive review on Google – don’t forget to also ask for one if you can. Google reviews go a long way with your reputation in bringing in new customers.
The effect of not having a Google tour – any one who visits your business and is disappointed as its not as they thought or heard about it – will leave a negative review whether you ask them to or not.
These are viewed slightly differently by potential customers / students. They are treated more as an informative tour and a “see behind the curtain”. These may be places that you can’t ordinarily walk into and look around – but the business will benefit from showing you these online to build trust, expertise and entice you to do business with them or use their services. They use the tour to tell a story of how their business works and show you the pride they take in what they do.
Many of these kinds of businesses also use the virtual tour link when they place job advertisements to show where candidates could work – and schools use them to attract parents to enrol their children.
Both scenarios above will have their tour uploaded to Google’s ecosystem of Google Search, Google Maps and Google Earth – which most of the world now knows how to operate.
After we have produced a tour for you, we show you how to embed your tour in to your website too – or multiple versions starting from different places such as different hotel bedrooms on separate pages, where a widget might be manufactured by a certain machine, which room certain activities take place etc.
The huge benefit of having your tour on your website will help your Google Rank position improve, and show your website visitors your business directly if they came to your site first before searching Google (such as links from social media or email signatures). Again, having separate pages on your site with different panoramas of the tour on display will greatly improve customer awareness.
There is a second type of Virtual Tour that would be hugely beneficial in this second group scenario – more so than the first group – and that is a:
A Hosted Hotspot Virtual Tour differs from a Google Virtual Tour in two main areas – 1) It’s hosted on a web server instead of Google’s ecosystem and 2) It contains hotspots!
The photography aspect is shot and produced in exactly the same way – High resolution images are shot on our DSLR cameras BUT – we export the images at a higher resolution than what you see on Google – as we’re not restricted to filesize & dimensions – meaning you get sharper, clearer images in your tour.
Hotspots – these are buttons (generally circles that pulsate and look like spots) on certain parts of the image that you’re looking at. So for instance, you have a machine that makes widgets, and as we spin around the room and see the machine – a pulsing button is placed near or on the machine – enticing the viewer to click it. When this happens, we popup more information about that machine and the widgets – this could be pictures, text, a voice-over or a video – giving more information about that machine.
We have two amazing voice-over artists (male & female) to truly make your interactive experience pop.
Alternatively, you might want to have a tour of a new-build property – and in the kitchen have hotspots on the appliances – showing the manufacture and product information – or , if you have a showroom – the hotspot on a product could link to your ecommerce site to buy that product or finally, a hotel room could have a hotspot to book your accommodation.
Telling the story of your business as your online viewer is “Virtully There” – will get more people throught your door to be “Really There”.
Top Tip! Before our photographer visits your business to shoot the hundreds of photos needed for your tour – get a reputable professional cleaning company, such as QualClean in Newport Shropshire, to come and give your place a thorough clean – The photos are high resolution and show all the good the bad and the ugly too!
The extra added bonus of a Hosted Hotspot Tour – is that we create a menu with direct links to jump to specific parts of the tour – ideal if you have a lot to show.
With the Google Virtual Tour – we provide an auto-updated weekly report showing how many visits your tour has attracted – great for your marketing team to monitor the progress of any campaigns they’re running.
The hosted tours – as they’re hosted on a web server (yours or ours) we can embed your branding and your Google Analytics tracking code to get the data right into your Analytics account.
To find out more about how our tours can help your business grow and benefit from all they offer, speak to one of our team – you’ll be surprised how little they cost for the return you’ll get – and to make the deal even easier to swallow – you can spread the cost over 12 months.
Main Image was AI generated by Adobe Firefly