On top of map directions, static photos, videos and street views for business listings, Google have rolled out interactive 360 degree views inside business locations.
Users browsing street view in Google Maps will be able to come off the streets and get a virtual tour of the interior of your location. For example, users looking for the perfect ambient environment for a restaurant or hotel will be able to tour dining areas, private function rooms, hotel facilities and outdoor areas with the ability to zoom in and out on your unique selling points. This will be extremely beneficial for potential customers in the research phase of the decision making process – and extremely beneficial to you as well, if you have great photos to show off to them!
From the Google Business photos FAQ page:
What are the benefits of requesting a photo shoot of my business?
Just as you can’t judge a book by its cover, you can’t always judge a business by its exterior. Interior photographs and panoramic imagery are a great way to show potential customers what your business is really like. By enhancing your Place page, business photos will help showcase your business to potential customers.
Check out the interior 360 degree tour of Sydney Indoor Climbing Gym and their great use of Business Photos with their vertigo inducing rock climbing walls:
While this feature is still relatively new, there is no doubt that this will play a part in Google SERPs. And with the speed that Google innovates, you can bet it will be sooner rather than later. Combined with improving the search results for “freshness”, getting your business photos added to your Google Place page will probably improve its ranking potential, since Google favours Place pages that are 100% complete.
All businesses in Australian Capital cities are eligible to register their business for free photos taken by Google photographers using street view technology. To register, simply fill out the online form from Google Maps. For more insight, here’s a short video by Google on the benefits of Business Photos:
This is a great opportunity to showcase your business and differentiate yourself from your competitors. And watch this space for E-Web Marketing’s Business Photos!