Got a question?
Find the answers below
What is a virtual tour?
A virtual tour is simply an online walk-through of your business. It’s a series of photographs (or panos) that are stitched together to create a seamless view of your premises or location.
What is an interactive virtual tour?
This takes a virtual tour to the next level using a range of creative options that allow people to interact with what they are seeing. We can integrate multimedia elements such as booking platforms, e-commerce, sound effects, music, narration, files and text into your virtual tour to create a more immersive experience for your customers.
What is Google Street View Trusted?
Local Insights is Google Street View Trusted. This means our photographers have been approved by Google to deliver Street View Trusted virtual tours. Basically, we’ve put in the hard yards to reach Google’s high standards of quality to become certified.
Can I view Local Insights’ tours on my tablets or phones?
All our tours are compatible with the iPad, iPhone, Android smartphones/tablets, some Smart TVs, and other internet-enabled devices.
How much does a virtual tour cost?
Our tours are among the most competitively priced on the market – but let us prove it! Give us a shout and we’ll be happy to give you a no-obligation free quote. It’ll probably cost less than you think!
Can I put the virtual tour on my website and social media?
You sure can! We’ll provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to embed the tour onto your website and social media. In fact, we highly recommend it … The more you promote the tour the more you’ll get out of it.
Can you help me remove the Street View image on my Google listing?
Unfortunately, no! The Street View image on your Google listing is not one of the 360 images taken by Local Insights. This is actually taken by those Google cars you sometimes see – and controlled by Google directly, not us. They are automatically added to your listing based on the address of your business. This image will be updated the next time Google send a car around.
However, there are things you can do to keep it low on the profile – like not clicking it! If you share the images you want to be seen to as many people as possible, and avoid clicking on the ones you don’t, then (over time) the most popular photos appear on the top. This reduces the impact and visibility of the image you don’t like.
Do I need to shut down for the photoshoot?
You don’t need to shut down, but it’s best to arrange the shoot for a time when you know your business will be quiet. The best tours tend to be all about the location, not about the people in it!
How long will the appointment take?
The appointment usually takes about two hours, although, depending on the size of your business, it might take slightly longer.
What parts of my business will be seen and what preparation should I do?
Only the areas of your business that you want to feature will be photographed – have a think about anything you might want to leave out, such as private offices or storage areas and let your photographer know.
As for the parts that are being photographed, remember, it’s a 360° tour, so that means every corner will be seen. Make sure your business is spick and span and presented the way you want it looking. We recommend having a good clean up and clearing away any unappealing items, like rubbish bins, coats or piles of paperwork. You can get more information about how to get ready for your photoshoot here. (add hyperlink to preparing for your shoot section).
Will my customer’s faces be shown in the tour?
Our photographers generally take the photographs when people are out of the shot, however, if this is unavoidable, and it sometimes is, then we use special software to blur faces. We also do this for any commercially sensitive or private information, as well as things like number plates.
What do I do about Easter, Christmas or Halloween decorations?
As a general rule: If you can see it, the 360 camera can see it, so ideally decorations should be hidden out of view. However, there’s no need to postpone your appointment – it might take a little planning, but decorations can certainly be worked around. Our photographers are skilled enough to shoot with decorations, but in some cases extra time and care might be needed.
Some of our clients who go all out for holidays and want to show off that work, arrange to have themed virtual tours along with their day-to-day business tour. Themed shoots can be temporarily put up on Google or social media sites as a unique way to promote that period and help you stand out from the crowd. If you would like to book an additional themed shoot, all our existing clients get a massive 50% off!
How long until my tour appears online?
It usually takes about 30 days following the shoot before the tour is added to your Google listing.
In the know
Give your staff a heads-up so they can help you get ready, and get their game faces on for the day.
As well as the usual cleaning up, take everything a step further and check there are no obvious marks or scuffs on walls or floors, no loose wires, that rubbish bins are put away, and that everything is looking spick and span.
Less is more
No one wants to pick their way through a room – whether it’s in real life or virtually. Make your business look cleaner and more spacious by getting rid of as much clutter as possible.
A bright space also emphasises cleanliness and space, so make sure you’re letting the sun in where possible, and that all your light bulbs are working.
Watch the monitors
It’s a good idea to turn off any screens you might have around, or have them set so that something like your business logo is showing. Make sure whatever you have on your screen doesn’t move, otherwise we can get blurring in the shots.
Have a think about security and safety in case there are things you don’t want to feature in your tour. Either make sure it’s out of sight or let the photographer know, so those can be blurred out.
See what you like
Take a look at some of our other virtual tours here and see whether anything in them could work for you too. Maybe they’ve improved their space with personal touches, or by adding business logos on screens or put a sign out front.