Monthly Archives: December 2013

First Major department store in London to adopt Google Business Photos

Source: Computerworld UK

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John Lewis has revealed that it has become the first major department store chain to adopt Google Street View.

The mapping of the London Oxford Street store is one of three trials the department store is running over the Christmas period to improve customer experience. Google recently added airports and train stations, including Gatwick Airport, Manchester and most of the London mainline stations, to its Street View database.

Simon Russell, director, retail operations development at John Lewis, said: “We intend to keep investing and innovating in our shops so that they remain compelling and hassle-free places for customers, offering multiple reasons to visit them. Partly this will see us use an increasing amount of technology to make shopping easier and offer more ‘in shop help.”

Visitors to the retailer’s seven-floor, flagship store will now be able to virtually walk the aisles and plan their trip using the virtual tour designed by Ideal Insight.

If the Google Map trial is successful, the virtual tour could be rolled out to other branches in the next two years.

See the Google Virtual Walkthrough here.

Entire Best Western Hotel chain in US signs up with Google Business Photos

Source: USA Today

Best Western International today announced the launch of Google Business Photos for all 2,200 of its North American hotels. All hotels will have the virtual tours online by the end of 2014.

Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, parent company of Radisson, Radisson Blu, and Country Inns & Suites, this month started a pilot program of the service with an initial rollout at its hotels in Chicago, Miami and metro Washington, D.C.

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Google Business Photos are 360-degree tours powered by Google Street technology. Many businesses have used the technology since Google introduced it in 2010, but a growing number of hotel companies are now adopting it.

“It will allow you to virtually experience the hotel in the same way you would if you were there,” says Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Best Western. “We personally believe that this is going to be a game-changer in the industry in redefining how photos will be consumed by the consumer.”

The photos are taken by photographers trained and certified by Google. Their still photographs are stitched into 360-degree views using panoramic camera technology. Travelers can see the photos when they search for the hotel on Google Search, Google Maps, Google+, and Google Hotel Finder. They’ll be able to take the interactive tours on their computers, smartphones or tablets. The hotels also can link to the images from their websites.

“Photos are a critical component people rely on when researching hotels and ultimately deciding to book a hotel,” says David Pavelko, Travel Partnerships Director at Google. “To date, photo quality has been inconsistent and there hasn’t been any great innovation in this space.”

According to market research firm PhocusWright, 44% of travelers have looked at professional photos when choosing a hotel. That is up 4 percentage points over last year, says Douglas Quinby, vice president of research for PhocusWright.

Many hotels have incorporated virtual tours on their websites in the past, but hoteliers say the Google photos are more consistent. Consumers also have more control over the experience by clicking on arrows that will take them in various directions.

“Guests are able to get a better feel for a hotel through these virtual tours than by just looking at static images,” says Jackie Astleford, senior director of E-Commerce for Carlson Rezidor. “Since the 360-degree panoramic virtual tours are taken by Google Trusted Photographers, guests know that these tours are created by a trusted, third party.”

Chekitan Dev, marketing professor at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration and author of Hospitality Branding, says other hotel companies will have to think more about visuals to compete with their counterparts.

“Because people react differently to photos than they do to simply text, brands that show photos of their properties will steal market share from those that do not,” he says.

The first Malaysian restaurant with Google Street View for Business, Pizza Brava

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We are proud and excited to announce the first ever restaurant in Malaysia to showcase their Google Virtual Tour on Google Maps. Pizza Brava is a quaint little restaurant located in Desa Sri Hartamas which serves incredible Italian Food. If you’ve never tried their pizzas, you’re missing out. If you like pasta, you won’t be disappointed either. Furthermore, their prices are very reasonable with the average price of a single meal at around RM20.

Click here or click on the image above to go the the search result. Be sure to click the “See Inside” button to view the virtual walkthrough!

Businesses in Malaysia can now sign up for Google Business Photos, essentially 360º virtual walkthroughs powered by Google Street View technology to increase search rankings, hit rates, visibility, and overall business.

Get your own Google virtual tour now by contacting us at

Google Business Photos now available in Malaysia!

We all know Google Street View. The ability to virtually explore streets all over the world. Recently, Street View was launched in Malaysia too, and several news articles of the Google Street View car driving around the city and other parts of the nation have been featured in newspapers.

Well now, Street View is coming indoors and into Malaysian establishments. If you are the owner of a retail shop, or food & beverage outlet, beauty salon, spa, or just about any kind of place that is used to conduct your business, you can sign up for Google Business Photos to boost your business activities.

Google Business Photos includes a Google Virtual Tour tailored to your establishment, and is published on Google Maps, Search, Street View, Google+, among others. Your customers are able to view the interior of your business with just a click of the mouse, or a tap of the finger, while doing a search on Google. If you wish, you can embed the Virtual Walkthrough on your own website too! Also included are 10-15 professionally taken still photos of your business, which will highlight your store, your products and decor.

We are proud to bring Google Business Photos to Malaysia.

Find us on Facebook. Or contact us today to get your business listed on the world map!