3D Home Tours: How to Use VR for Your Real Estate Marketing
By Matthew Bushery
About Website Design
3D home tours are not a fad.
Home buyers nationwide have made it clear: They want to tour listings in new and innovative ways — and there’s arguably no better way to do so than with 3D home tours, available for viewing on real estate websites.
Chances are you, like other agents, are intrigued by 3D virtual tours and how to use them for your online marketing.
Let’s take a look at the past, present, and future of virtual reality for real estate, and ways you can use 3D home tours to engage leads.
From Matterport to Zillow, there are many 3D home tour resources out there to enhance your marketing.
There are many 3D home tour software providers. Nearly all solutions are do-it-yourself, with some easier to master than others.
What all of these virtual home tour tools have in common is they provide real estate agents a way to differentiate their listings.
Take Matterport, for example. The VR real estate brand is arguably the leader in the 3D home tour space.
Matterport allows agents to easily capture listing footage and include finalized walkthroughs on their websites and other digital channels (like social media).
Real estate portals are also trying to enter the virtual reality space. For instance, Zillow announced its 3D Home tour tool in late 2017.
Though it’s apparently still in the testing phase, Zillow’s product appears to be on par with Matterport’s offering and those of other VR leaders.
Some 3D home tour options are even available on mobile. With iStaging’s VR Maker app, for example, you can use your iPhone, Android, or other smartphone to develop real estate home tours.
While there is a minor learning curve to mastering tools like this, the payoff is more than worth it if you start exploring your options now. You’ll get to spotlight listings in a wholly unique way — before the majority of agents catch on.
To find the most appropriate tool for your real estate marketing needs, set aside time to test (or get a demo of) a few so you can compare the cost and ease of use.
3D home tours are relatively new to real estate — but savvy agents are leading the charge on adoption.
Arguably the most popular place real estate pros put their virtual home tours is their agency websites.
Take Lifestyle Property Partners from Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate, for example.
The company features several Matterport tours in the top navigation bar of its Placester website.
Including even just one 3D home tour on your website — on your homepage, a blog post, or a dedicated page like this — can greatly differentiate your online presence from those of other agents nearby.
Local Property Shop out of Boston also understands the importance of virtual reality home tours.
The LPS website allow prospective buyers to see 3D versions of floor plans and other home specs, painting a very compelling picture of all of their listings.
Aside from your real estate listings, there are other ways to use VR technology to your advantage as an agent.
For instance, you could show off the hottest spots around town — restaurants, theaters, parks, and so on — like the We Are Home ATL media production team did.
The brand’s Facebook Business Page features several videos, photos, and — yup — 3D home tours and community tours highlighting the best homes, venues, and amenities in the Atlanta area.
The lesson to be learned from this use of 3D tour tech is to think outside the box.
VR technology will continue to grow in the years ahead, and agents who master it early will have a home court advantage.
The virtual reality-real estate relationship is only going to get stronger with time.
It’s hard to predict how VR will evolve in the weeks, months, and years ahead. One thing that seems certain, though, is that real estate marketing tech is here to stay – and it’s likely to get more powerful when paired with other visually enticing options.
With augmented reality tools like Houzz’s View in My Room 3D, real estate pros and consumers alike can stage homes with furniture and decor of their choosing.
Apps like these can give buyers an idea of what the home they’re interested in would look like with their belongings.
Moreover, this tech can show sellers how they to properly stage their homes so that buyers take interest.
Now’s the time to think about how you can use VR real estate tours — and other essential tech — for your digital marketing.
At the end of the day, you have a lot of real estate tech tools to consider for your online marketing. Some are essential (like website, CRM, and email software), while others are nice-to-haves.
Virtual reality tools technically fall in the nice-to-have category. However, once you have all of your other core digital activities mastered, there’s no reason not investigate 3D home tours!
Want to see real-life examples of 3D tours in action? Check out our on-demand webinar, 10 incredible real estate websites by Placester:
Published on February 27, 2018
Written by Matthew Bushery
I'm the Sr. Content Creator for Placester, where I educate real estate professionals about modern marketing and, in turn, help agents and brokers make the most of their online presence, earn more traffic, and generate more leads and business.