What would potential patients think of your dental clinic if they could see it firsthand? Would they feel more confident about coming in for an office visit if they could get their first impression in the comfort of their own home? With Google’s new Business View, they can do just that. A virtual tour of your office shows up on the Google results page so anyone who wants to find out more about you can see what your office is like and imagine going inside for the first time. The question becomes: how will your office look in the 360 degree view? The answer is that it will look perfect if you take the time to stage it effectively.
Google Business View Requirement
You must have a Google Trusted Photographer, who takes still photos and pieces them together to create the 360 degree view. Google requires 360 degree views outside your business as well as inside the door. You can add other views throughout your dental office to give a more rounded depiction of your dental clinic. Your photographer is also required to blur the faces of anyone in or around your offices or in visual images such as photos posted on walls.
What Is Your Job for the Photo Shoot?
Your job is to make sure your office is ready for viewing. Since no patients or employees will be in the photos, you need the office itself to tell your story. And, dental offices do naturally have a story to tell. You have patient chairs, dental equipment and a waiting room at the very least. What you need to do is highlight what is already there in a way that can appeal to people who view your virtual tour. Specifically, you need to make sure the following tasks are completed before the photo shoot.
- Mow and clean up the area outside your office.
- Make sure no cars are parked in front of your office.
- Replace burnt-out light bulbs.
- Remove any posters from entry doors and windows.
- Remove coats from backs of doors.
- Remove seasonal decorations and time-sensitive materials
- Remove any magnets, lists or artwork from cabinets.
- Be prepared to leave the photographer alone to create your virtual tour.
- Ask the photographer any additional questions by the day before the photo shoot.
Clean, De-Clutter and Beautify
Your office needs to be visually stunning. This starts with a deep cleaning, so make sure your cleaning staff does an especially good job for you. Put away odds and ends that you might need to keep out to increase your efficiency during working hours, and that make the treatment rooms look cluttered.
More than simple cleaning and de-cluttering, you need to make sure every surface sparkles to reflect light, an important element in photography. Dental offices often seem sterile, but you can add life with fresh flowers and potted plants as well as touches of vibrant color in the décor.
Play to Your Target Market
Do you want to focus on pediatric dental care? If so, why not create a 360 degree view for kids? You can place stuffed toys in the patient chairs to give them a pleasant feeling about their first trip to the dentist. Or, you can present a 360 view with toys placed throughout the treatment room, give them a list of the toys, and let them do a virtual scavenger hunt.
For other target markets, you need to take different approaches. For example, if your target is general dentistry patients in a certain neighborhood, the outside view becomes more important than ever. You want people to recognize your office exterior when they drive or walk by it. So, make sure your outdoor signage is well-maintained to highlight your brand identity.
Create the Image You Want to Display
Use your imagination to develop the story of your dental clinic the way you want others to see it. Although your office may be busy and hectic at times in the real world, your virtual tour should show a relaxing, beautiful and helpful place patients will look forward to visiting. Translate your business vision into a world your patients want to enter and your Google Business View will be a huge success.
Things that should not be seen on the Business View
The following types of subjects cannot appear in any photos taken for the tour.
- illegal content
- violations of copyright
- trademark infringement
- pornography or nudity
- incitement of violence
- promotions of hate
- invasion of privacy
- drugs or drug paraphernalia