360 Virtual Tour: What Is It and How Can It Improve Your SEO?
Using the best practices to design your marketing campaign is the key to attracting customers and maximizing your brand exposure. While it used to be as simple as handing out a flyer by the corner of your store or posting eye-catching posters along busy streets, times have changed. Nowadays, marketing needs to be a mix of physical and digital media.
In today’s fast-paced tech world, digital marketing is no longer an option but a requirement. There are tons of strategies and techniques you can use to increase your online presence, and SEO is one of the most popular. However, while you might be familiar with some standard practices, the value of a 360 virtual tour is often overlooked.
Given the restrictions with the pandemic, many businesses have ventured into virtual tours to give customers a smooth buying experience online. However, you might not realize that doing this can significantly improve your SEO efforts. Get to know more about how the tour works and why it will be a valuable addition to your SEO.
What Is a 360 Virtual Tour?
You have probably been on many tours before. Whether it be a school excursion or planned vacation, the gist is that you have to check out a place or a series of locations to check out their sights. That said, touring today is no longer just lining up with countless other people while you wait for your turn. Now, it is possible to tour a place without leaving your home.
So, what is a virtual tour? By now, you might already know that having high-quality photos in your Google business listing is a must to attract customers. A 360 virtual tour essentially allows you to take this a step further. By offering a virtual tour to users, you get to showcase your store and products.
All of your potential consumers can take a peek into your store, almost like they were visiting the place in person. Moreover, with a virtual tour, they can easily determine where they need to go and decide if they should do an on-site visit. If you want to add a 360 tour to your online listing, you can use Google Street View to create a detailed, interactive, and accessible tour for users.
Adding a virtual tour may seem like a small effort, but it can do wonders for your marketing. With a quick Google search and mouse click, you let customers experience your store through a virtual lens. By doing the tour online, they pause from time to time to observe different surroundings more carefully.
What is Street View?
Role of Virtual Tours in SEO
As mentioned initially, a 360 virtual tour will be a great addition to your Local SEO strategy. However, before delving into the specifics, it helps to understand better SEO’s significantly role in today’s digital marketing space.
In a nutshell, SEO is all about improving your visibility in a search engine. While there are many search engines worldwide, Google is the most popular. Hence, this is the common engine that marketers optimize for when planning SEO activities.
Good SEO is ultimately the product of many factors, such as excellent ratings, valuable content, and high-quality backlinks. They all work together to improve your online visibility, so your webpage comes out whenever someone searches for a related topic. One of the core strategies in SEO is understanding users’ keywords and search intent, so you can properly optimize your site for these terms.
To help you understand the relevance of SEO, think of this: Surveys show that 60% of all traffic comes from the first page of Google search results. Therefore, being pushed out of the first page can lead to lower click rates interaction. Thus, it is important that you constantly improve your SEO strategy to maintain high search ranks.
How Does a 360 Virtual Tour Improve SEO?
Virtual tours can be a big factor in SEO, reviews and more. For example, if you are a realtor, a virtual tour can be a great way to get additional exposure. Instead of listing homes on your website, you can create virtual tours of each one. This helps connect with buyers that wouldn’t normally find you. While there are other features that work well on your website, such as videos, a virtual tour can be a great way to raise your exposure to your target audience. Virtual tours can be used as a marketing tool by local businesses as well. If you own a restaurant, you can create a virtual tour to show customers what the inside looks like. This is great for drawing in new customers.
Now that you understand virtual tours and SEO, the big question is: Do Virtual Tours Improve SEO? Simply put, the answer is yes. Of course, virtual tours can improve your SEO significantly, but if you are still unconvinced, here are top reasons why 360 tours will be beneficial for your SEO.
Stand Out from the Competition
The online space is highly competitive today. With so many other websites to compete against, you need to think of unique and novel ways to differentiate yourself. While virtual tours are not necessarily a new concept, they continue to be underutilized by many businesses. Thus, you can capitalize on this to stand out from the crowd.
Not all properties or brands use the same taglines or words when forming the search string, so you can differentiate yourself by being one of the few that offer them through your virtual tours. To do this, you can include the most searched terms and trendy topics in your tour to show that you have more to offer than just static pictures!
Ultimately, having a virtual tour and taking the time to design it for a good experience will help your brand stand out. Google’s mechanism is to promote the available technology, so anything you post on your virtual tours will have that extra boost in SEO. Overall, online tours make your brand more visible and likely to be chosen over others.
Rank Higher in Search Engines
Much like how you want your site to be friendly to users, Google also wants its search engine easy and convenient. Thus, Google constantly improves its algorithm to display the best web pages for searches.
One way to rank higher would be through adding visual elements to your site or listing, such as images, videos, and of course, tours. For example, studies show that static photos and a 360 virtual tour can improve audience engagement time and lead to higher click rates.
This influx of clicks means more traction and organic traffic, increased brand awareness, and more potential leads to nurture in your pipeline. When Google sees that your page is performing well, it will boost you up as you keep gaining interactions—ultimately resulting in higher ranks.
Increase Trust for Google and Visitors
Nowadays, ratings and reviews play a massive role in influencing customer perception and purchasing behavior. But, beyond these, virtual tours are also starting to be a sought-after feature in searches. Essentially, more and more users are now looking for virtual tours when they make Google searches.
Having a 360 virtual tour increased the time people spend on your website by five to tenfold. Studies also show that 67% of all consumers often look for virtual tours whenever they perform a search. Thus, having one on your site or listing can significantly increase a visitor’s trust in your brand.
Similarly, a virtual tour can also help you build trust with Google. The search engine notices when your business draws in many clicks and web traffic, so virtual tours will help you generate more interest and engagement.
Based on a study by Google/IPSOS, companies with photos and virtual tours are twice as likely to generate initial interest or push the consumer to make that first phone call. So, as you can see, providing a virtual tour to customers can increase their trust in your brand and potentially increase your conversions.
Enhance Google Maps Presence through Google Street View
Google Street View is an interactive technology that allows you to view the world more closely. With a 360 virtual tour, you can boost your visibility on Google maps, giving you a higher chance of getting noticed when customers search for specific locations. This benefit will be particularly useful for local businesses that rely on foot traffic.
If you want to further enhance your Google Maps presence, make sure to couple your virtual tour with high-quality shots to increase engagement. Industry professionals note that engagement is key to improving conversions. Thus, investing in an interactive tour and good shots to help potential customers get a glimpse of your location pays off.
Improve the Number of Online Bookings
Having a virtual tour available on your Google Business page effectively attracts more customers and encourages more bookings. On average, businesses that offer virtual tours have an increased customer response rate since users have a clearer idea of what your place is like and what they can expect from you.
Now that the pandemic has made it more difficult to leave your home, connecting with customers without physical touch is more challenging. Thus, having a virtual tour offers the perfect compromise as it allows customers to “feel it out” or get a feel of your business before committing to anything.
So if your company is in the hospitality industry, which often relies on bookings, you can add a tour to your listing to spark excitement in customers.
Overall, SEO is always evolving, so you also need to constantly think of new ways to improve your efforts. With virtual 360 tours, you can ultimately boost user engagement, generate more interest, and provide a more seamless experience. Interactive content and eye-catching imagery lead to more clicks and interaction, allowing you to become more relevant in search results pages, effectively resulting in higher search ranks for your SEO.
Virtual Tour Services in Abbotsford, Langley, and Chilliwack
If you’re in the Abbotsford or Lower Mainland area, hire our Google Trusted Street View Photographer to capture immersive 360 virtual tour footage to boost the engagement and visibility of your Google My Business Listing. Our professional Google Street View Photographer will capture high quality images and tours to double your opportunity to get calls and bookings. A fast and effective way to get more customers through your door! Call today: 1-888-262-6687