By Sean Boyle

7 minute read

Welcome back to another Momentum Monday!

In this week’s blog, learn about what virtual tours are and how they can help grow your business! Let’s dive in!

To the people that’ve followed Momentum 360 for a while, this topic might come as a bit of a surprise. I’m sure that you all know what virtual tours are…but does the average person? Not so sure. The purpose of this blog is to educate the uneducated so you can implement virtual tours in your small business too!

What Is A Virtual Tour?

“A virtual tour is a virtual representation of a physical location, most commonly shown off with 360 panoramic views stitched together for the viewer to seamlessly walk through the model as if they were actually there themself!” – Sean Boyle

For the people that have followed us before, you’re probably saying to yourself “No duh Sean!” Understandable. But a virtual tour and a video tour are two different things. Take the real estate niche for an example. If a realtor were to call us to get a virtual tour of their listing, we would use either Matterport, Google Street View or any of the virtual tour softwares out there. If the realtor called us and asked for a video tour, this would be shot with a 2D camera with a gimbal. Completely different service, this is why it’s important to differentiate the two. Without doing so, you come off as ignorant in the VR space as someone who doesn’t know what a virtual tour is…and if you’re in that space, that’s a problem!

Now, there’s a few more questions we need to answer. We need to talk about the different kinds of virtual tours, why they’re useful and who needs them for their small business or real estate listing. Let’s start from the top.

Different Kinds of Virtual Tours

To date, there are over 100+ virtual tour softwares around the world. They’re being used for all sorts of niches, not just real estate. I’m going to list the top 5 virtual tour softwares that I would recommend to a small business. Here they are:

Matterport

The golden standard of virtual tours. Matterport has been the leading virtual tour provider in the United States since its inception in 2011. Ever since, they’ve been working with hundreds of thousands of VR-based solution companies to help their clients grow with VR. Momentum 360 has been working with them since 2015, when we started up. If you or someone is looking for a high-quality VR solution, this is the best option for you. A warning though….you might need to cough up some dough as an investment for this…Matterport can be a bit expensive, nonetheless it’s a grade A option. Learn more about Matterport here.

3D Vista

Another quality option for significantly less, 3D Vista ranks among the top virtual tour softwares in the entire world. With only a one-time fee to gain access to their exclusive virtual tour software, it’s a no-brainer why smaller companies are using 3D Vista instead of its more expensive competitors. Learn more about 3D Vista here.

Omnisight Inc

An official partner with Momentum, Omnisight’s HQ also resides in Philadelphia. When we initially saw their work, we knew we had to partner with them. As the saying goes, “If you can’t beat em, join em!” In this case, it’s been a great partnership for both sides, providing unique solutions that both companies fought long and hard to find…at last, both companies have exactly what they need to succeed. Learn more about Omnisight here and check out their tours they’ve shot with us here.

Blue Raven Studios

Another partner with Momentum 360, BRS has been around for decades…employing the best of the best in the VR space. With unique solutions tailored for non-traditional VR niches, it’s undeniable that they’re dominating their space. Learn more about Blue Raven Studios here.

VPIX 360

Last but certainly not least, VPIX 360 was one of the original virtual tour solution companies back in the year 2000 that wasn’t afraid of a new millennium. Instead, they charged forward with a vengeance and to this day have the greatest VR infrasture on the market. Simply put, this is the greatest virtual tour software company in the world. They started the revolution and aren’t stopping to enjoy it just yet..there is still work to do. Learn more about VPIX 360 here.

Now that you know about some of the best of the best in the VR space, it’s time to talk about their use. Sure, virtual tours for real estate make sense, but why would someone use it for a….restaurants perhaps? Maybe an auto dealership? How about a school? These are all niches we break down in this next section:

Why Are Virtual Tours Useful?

Well, I’m glad you asked. I’ll be talking about 5 niches other than real estate to show you the power virtual tours possess for other niches too. Let’s dive in.

Restaurants

Have you ever looked up a restaurant online and said to yourself, “I want to sit right there! They’ve got a bunch of TVs to look at and it’s right near the bar!” Probably every single time you’ve looked up a place to eat, right?

So how cool would it be to take a virtual tour of that restaurant and be able to book a table/booth in the exact spot that you want beforehand? This way, there’s no asking to be moved to a different location in the restaurant, since you’re already at your favorite spot!

Having a bad table at a restaurant can take up the majority of your conversation…why not save the frustration and enjoy the night like you’re supposed to!

Schools

Especially during 2020, schools have been hit hard. From not allowing students in their building, to missing out on merchandise and sponsorship money from sports, we can all say that schools have gotten the short end of the stick this year. But what if we could change that? What if your school could show off the entire building while still being able to hit your quota for new enrollment? Too good to be true? We don’t think so.

Enter in a virtual tour. With this tour, your marketing team can hop on quick Zoom calls showing off your school in a quick demo. Not only does this allow the future student to get acquainted with your entire building, but you do so remotely without risking exposure to COVID. It’s elementary, Watson! It’s literally the perfect marketing tool you’ve been waiting for. Trust me, I know, you probably don’t have thousands of dollars sitting in reserve right now to throw at this. No worries, that’s why Momentum works with you on a set payment plan of your choosing.

Remember, our goal as a virtual tour provider near you is to make sure you can gain access to this software without breaking the bank.

Dealerships

KIA, Mazda, McLaren, these are all the dealerships that Momentum has helped during 2020 to save their dealership. They need virtual tours more than ever. So think, why would this make sense to have? A few reasons.

People in 2020 need safety and convenience, and I’m not talking about their cars. They prefer to buy their automobiles more online now than ever before. If your dealership had a virtual walkthrough to show off every nut and bold, you’ll get more sales. Why? Because it’s showing off your top vehicles in a convenient manner. It’s safe, and it allows you to click on each vehicle to learn more about it. Once satisfied, you can click on the website link that takes you either to a checkout page, or allows you to further schedule an appointment to go buy your newest car! It’s a genius idea that has allowed Momentum to work with such big names. So, if you’re a struggling dealership in 2020, there is no better time than now to invest in a quality virtual tour!

Stores

Along with the same reason for dealerships, people buy more things online now than ever before. That includes their groceries, household items, etc. So, the choice is yours. Would you rather invest in a quality virtual tour that allows your customers to buy products at your store, while also showing them what it looks like, or spend an incredible amount of money on a Shopify website that will take 3 months to start up? I think we can all agree that the former is a better option.

Business owners can’t wait around for ecommerce shops to be built, that’s just too much wasted time. Instead, we can have it so your customers can buy your products right from our virtual tour! Not only will it pull you out of the hole, but it will allow you to keep the ball rolling as time goes on.

Stadiums & Venues

Quick, think of your favorite sports team. Imagine you being there, eating and drinking to your heart’s delight, it’s perfect right? Now, imagine if you could actually buy the perfect seats too..wouldn’t that be better? Let me explain.

There’s websites right now like Seatgeek, Vivid Seats and Stubhub that allow you to choose your seats before the big game. But, there is currently no virtual reality tour that allows you to tour the entire stadium and venue. With this being said, you can learn exactly what concessions are near you, as well as a bunch of different features as well! Sure, it’s about where you sit, but you also need to make sure you’re near all the goodies come game time. A virtual tour would be perfect for this.

We’ve walked you through 5 prominent niches that need virtual tours right now. During this pandemic, it’s essential to innovate so your business can stay ahead. Without that investment, you could be risking falling behind the 8 ball and never being able to catch up.

So next time you’re in your marketing meeting, mention virtual tours and you’d be surprised how many people are foreign to this concept! Make the investment now and get a virtual tour for your space.

Who Needs Virtual Tours?

This is a very broad question, because potentially every niche with a physical location needs a virtual tour. In the 10+ years that I’ve been involved in VR, it’s important to realize that it’s not just about the tour, it’s more about practicality and how you use it.

Once you’ve figured out why and how a virtual tour for your business makes sense, let’s hop on a call!

From everyone here at Momentum, thanks for reading!

So…Why Go With Us?

Momentum 360 has been the leading-virtual tour provider in Philadelphia since our inception. Why? Because we deliver a top-quality product at a reasonable price. We take pride in helping small-businesses rise and get more traction. We lived through the struggle that most business owners go through on a daily basis, that’s why we get along with them so well.

If you’re looking to grow your online presence with a quality virtual tour, look no further.

You can schedule a call with Sean or Mac and always get more information on our website!

Our owners Mac Frederick and Sean Boyle have over 20+ years of digital marketing experience and are ready to help take your business to the next level! Our team members have also worked at Google and Facebook before, so we have the most up-to-date knowledge in the business. All to help your business rank at the top of Google and kickstart your journey to be a future lead generation machine!

Mac Frederick Sean Boyle

You can email us or check out our website for more information!

We hope this blog informed you on how to correctly publish your tour to Google Street View and the neat features that come along with this!

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If you have any questions or concerns, leave them in the comments below! From everyone at Momentum 360, thanks for the love and until next time, build Momentum!

matterport virtual tours