Google Store View
Google Store View Offers a Virtual Tour
The latest way to bring customers into a brick-and-mortar store is Google Store View.
Google Maps lets you see the street view of the outside of a building or residential address. Google Store View lets people click a link to check out the inside of stores. Store owners have to sign up for this subscription service through Google.
Virtual tours have been used for years on real estate Web sites for potential buyers or just lookie-loos to see inside homes for sale. Now those same buyers or lookers can do the same with Google Store View, which is a way for potential customers to check out store shelves or merchandise like clothing or whatever it is being sold in the actual store.
Inside Lewis's Department Store, Liverpool photo credit: Green Lane, Wikimedia Commons
Virtual Tours for Virtual Customers
Bringing the Online Customer into the Real Store
Google offers the service of virtual tours, for a fee, to businesses with an actual storefront. The business owner pays Google a fee for the virtual tour to show up online.
This service lets potential buyers searching the Internet for the next great boutique or a specific item at a drugstore to visit the store first online before getting dressed and venturing out into the real world.
The virtual tour is a 360-degree view of the store's interior. Viewers can zoom in to get a closer look at the selection of toothpastes or what have you. They can pan to the floor or to the ceiling and check out the store very similarly to being there in person.
Businesses interested in this service work with a Google "Trusted Photographer" who shoots a video of the store for placement online. The photographers are independent and do not work for Google but set their own rates for photography.
Google Store View is not offered for medical, legal, corporate, large-chain stores, or religious establishments.
According to Google, "Not only will these images appear on Google searches, Google Maps, and Google Places, but you can easily embed these images on your own website, social media pages, and more!"
Vintage image of department store: The Graphics Fairy
Have you heard of Google Store View?
Check this link for a list of
Google Trusted Photographers by city and state.
Thanks to Orcatek for leaving a comment
to notify me of this list.
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If you had a store, would you use Google Store View?
Read More About Google Store View - The Mapping App Goes Inside
- Google Street View Now Offering Inside Store View of B&H Photo (interactive) | GadgetReview
Google is expanding its Street View capabilities and now offering Google Store View that's a new feature of the mapping app, which allows viewers to virtually take a peek inside of participating businesses and have a look around.
- Google Store View FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions about Google Store View are answered here. The Sign Up Process How does the Business Photos program help my Business? Why are businesses being photographed and how can I see the pictures?
- Google Maps Provides Street View-Look at Store Interiors | PCWorld
One drawback to the service is that it's part of Google Place Pages, so images are not fully integrated with standard Street View.