It may seem out of reach for some businesses, but virtual viewing and tours are becoming a reality. I can attest to just how real it is becoming.
When I was going into my freshman year of college, rather than physically visiting and looking at the different dorm buildings I could live in, I instead took a virtual tour of the buildings from the school’s website and then made my decision.
So, why did I do this? Firstly, it was easily accessible to me through the university’s website. Second, it meant that I didn’t have to commit an overwhelming amount of time to tour buildings that I wouldn’t end up choosing. It took away the time and energy of ruling out options.
This situation is the same for customers and businesses.
Offering potential customers the ability to take a virtual view of your business, both inside and out, has its benefits and Google has the services you need to get there.
According to research, businesses with these complete search listings are 29 percent more likely to motivate customers to consider purchasing from and visiting the business.
Google’s Street View and virtual tours are the tools for expanding this customer interest and decision-making.
Let's talk a little more about each of these tools!
Why Google Street View?
Now, what exactly does Street View do?
Street View is a compilation of panoramic photos used in Google Maps for users to view and better understand the area they are searching; this extends to businesses.
The Street View puts your business on Google Maps with pictures of your storefront, but these photos are not exclusive uploads by Google.
Businesses and customers can contribute to the Street View photo sharing as well.
While there are requirements that come with taking and publishing Google Street View photos, doing so has seen great value.
In fact, customer interest is likely to double when business listings include photos and a virtual tour.
There's a lot that goes into Google search results, so click here to learn more.
Check out this quick clip of a Google Street View of the RevLocal office in Granville, Ohio:
Looking to add a street view of your business?
Google gives users the ability to publish these business photos themselves (obviously with a few rules to follow). Click here to find out how to do it.
You also have the option to hire a Street View photographer or become one yourself so take advantage of this amazing feature!
The World of Virtual Tours
Need more convincing? Let’s look at those virtual tours we mentioned earlier.
To enrich the Google search experience, businesses can opt to bring customers inside their stores with a virtual tour.
The virtual tour feature is an enhanced interactive experience. By bringing customers through the door without physically stepping foot in your business, they can see just how much you have to offer.
This hands-on experience is proving to be valuable.
Two-out-of-three Google users surveyed have expressed that they want more virtual tours.
Of course, this means you should manage the presentation of your business. Give your potential customers what they want and expect to see.
Let's take retail for example. Retailers who take advantage of the virtual tour feature can give potential customers the chance to see everything their space has to offer.
Google virtual tours end the guessing game that customers play. Having the detailed visuals that come with virtual tours gets rid of the questions that can come with traditional advertising.
It's nice on the outside, but what about the inside? Do they have the items I'm looking for? Is it worth visiting?
With these questions answered, customers are motivated to give you their business!
Offering virtual tours can build customer trust and reliability toward a business. The choice to use Street View and virtual tours express your interest in providing an excellent customer experience even outside of the physical store, restaurant, etc.
The data speaks for itself.
Businesses with these complete search listings are 94 percent more likely to be viewed as reputable and 78 percent more likely to be seen as well-established.
When you think about your Google search listing, it’s easy to forget about your business's Street View and virtual tour, but you shouldn’t!
Having these features helps build a complete Google search profile for your business and ultimately boosts your credibility and visibility.
Do you have questions about Google Street View and virtual tours for your business? Leave us a comment below!