The virtual world is expanding and is accessible to almost everyone. How people search online is starting to blend with virtual reality technology. Here, we explain how the Google Virtual Tour will benefit your business.
What is the Google Virtual Tour?
Google virtual tour is a simulation of an existing location. It is made with a selection of imaged taken by a Street View trusted professional or agency. These images are then added to Google My Business and listed as a virtual walking tour. This will be visible alongside your other location information, helping searchers get an idea of what to expect when visiting your premises. So, how will this feature benefit your business?
Increased quality content for your listing improves engagement
A well-optimised listing is one that goes beyond adding basic business information. The more high-quality content you add, the better your ranking and engagement. Your Google My Business should have such content as
- Your website
- Posts, similar to social media content
- Customer reviews – make sure you have reviews less than 3 months old
- 360 virtual tour
Let’s say you’re a vintage-style cinema and you want to make sure your customers can find you on Google. Some photos would be a fantastic start, but a 360 virtual tour will give them an idea of the amazing décor you have inside. The attraction, engagement and time spent viewing your business could DOUBLE. People WILL take the time to tour your business more than they will skim through photos. It offers a more honest look at what your business is like. What’s more, it’s really fun!
As visitors virtually tour your cinema, Google sees this as a positive organic engagement, which will help boost your ranking. To many, the virtual world is still pretty impressive. Any customer looking at your listing will genuinely enjoy the experience.
Demonstrates something that may be hard to describe
Let’s say your location is visually stunning, packed with beautiful fixtures and is a welcoming environment. How do you let people know without saying anything? Google virtual Tour will allow your customer to soak in the atmosphere and create a sense of familiarity when they visit.
Up-to-date Street View of your storefront allows customers to find you with ease
It can be confusing when someone searches for your business on Google, only to find that the storefront is completely different from online, making it more difficult to find. It could be that when the Google street car passed your location, you hadn’t opened your business then and another business was set up there. Adding an external view of your up-to-date business signage can really help make things easier.
When adding external 360 images, it can replace the thumbnail picture in the most current street view tour taken by the Google Maps car. These cars are only driven once a year or less, so this can be remediated with a virtual tour.
Your Google Virtual Tour can be used in other places
You can even embed your Google Virtual Tour in other places outside of Google. When we say other places, we mostly mean your website. Simple copy and paste the embedded code into a website block and it will appear in almost any context!
You could also post it to any social media platform that has 360 support, like Facebook. We all know the importance of using social media to promote your business, so consider implementing 360 content as a way to boost engagement.
It can last forever
This tour will stay on your Google My Business until you choose to take it down. The cost of photography and production is often a one-off fee for the process and publishing. From there, you can have it up as long as you wish! There are just a few ways you can optimise your Google My Business listing to get a higher ranking and these virtual tours could give you the competitive edge you need.
Let Search and More help you get the most out of Google My Business
With so many elements of Google My Business that can help your rankings, it pays to have a team of experts to get you the most out of it. Get in touch to find out how Search and More can help your business grow online.