Video Tours vs. Virtual Tours: Which Do You Need?

by McKenna Hogan, on Feb 22, 2021 8:30:00 AM

Video tours, virtual tours, in-person tours—with so many different options, how do you choose what’s best for your community?

Below we break down the pros and cons of video tours vs. virtual tours, so that you can maximize your marketing efforts in 2021.

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First off, what's the difference?

Although both tools have the same overall goal - to showcase a property digitally - they actually function quite differently.

Take a look below at the differences in design and functionality of video tours vs. virtual tours.

Virtual tours

360 virtual tours are created by stitching 360º images together to make a panoramic view of a property that prospects can navigate through, or be taken on a guided tour.

By clicking through arrows to virtually “walk through” a property, you basically get the entire touring process completely online.

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What makes virtual tours so valuable is their immersiveness as well as how informative and user-friendly they are.

Not to mention, with virtual tour providers like Panoskin, real estate businesses can consolidate all of their digital assets into one easy-to-use dashboard while also being able to track analytics.

Video tours

Video tours have a bit of a wider definition.

While many real estate professionals became accustomed to video tours such as FaceTime tours, or just walkthrough videos of a property, there’s actually much more to them that many people aren’t familiar with.

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For example, a 360 video - built much like a virtual tour - is stitched together to create a panoramic view.

The difference? 360 videos are exactly that—videos that show entire perspectives of a property. And although some are navigable, many are just walkthrough or flythrough videos that can show both interior, exterior, and aerial views.

So, for the sake of comparison, we will be referring to these types of video tours when comparing video tours vs. virtual tours.

How do they compare in the eyes of renters?

It goes without saying that the ongoing pandemic plays a huge role in increasing the need for both of these tools when it comes to touring a real estate property.

So, to preface, both tools are being leveraged increasingly during this new technology-driven decade.

However, although either or might be beneficial regardless, one might resonate with your renters more than the other—so we’re here to decipher which that is.

Starting off with some statistics, video marketing in general has, and will continue to be a huge force in real estate marketing.

In fact, video statistics show that 78% of individuals watch online videos every week and 55% view online videos every day—hence the emergence of video-based platforms like YouTube and TikTok.

And these statistics don’t pertain to just one age group. Boomers, Gen Z, Millennials; all age groups are included here.

The caveat? People don’t quite have the attention span to want to watch a video longer than around a minute or two. This is an important fact to keep in mind if and when you plan to create a 360 property video.

As for virtual tours, it has been found that most people want and/or will happily take a virtual tour if it is offered. 

Virtual tour statistics show that two-thirds of people want more virtual tours. In addition, real estate listings with a virtual tour receive 87% more views than those without.

Basically, both video tours and virtual tours are highly sought after. The key to deciding is what kind of property you have as well as the type of marketing you wish to accomplish.

How does my property type affect my decision?

When speaking of video tours vs. virtual tours, one of the biggest questions to answer should be, “what do I want to show on my property?”

For example, if you work in multifamily and have an apartment with a lot of unit selection, or an intricate interior space, a virtual tour that can be self-navigated or guided by an agent may make more sense due to the fact that it might be too much information to be captured in one single video.

However, for commercial real estate or storage facilities, a video tour that can capture unique aerial perspectives of a property and surrounding areas may be more beneficial to those specific renters.

Although both digital tools would greatly benefit each industry, one may be more effective in providing the correct information for renters.

Which is better for marketing purposes?

As stated, video tours and virtual tours are advanced, result-driven digital assets that are excellent marketing tools.

However, it could be said that one may be more beneficial than the other during different parts of the renter journey.

For example, the nature of video tours - being cinematic, storytelling tools - might be better at inciting interest in renters, who may otherwise not be interested initially.

Whether on a listing, website, or social media platform, video tours are a great discovery tool, and an excellent way to portray a lot of information in one small package.

Video tours, therefore, could potentially take leads to the next phase - that being research - which makes it a good tool for properties that need help boosting interest and/or visibility.

Virtual tours on the other hand are often resorted to when a prospect already has some interest towards your property.

In this case, a 360 virtual tour may be the research tool needed to take the next step in the renting process due to it being both extremely informative as well as a comparable alternative to the original touring style: viewing in person.

For marketers that may be established, but would like to maximize their marketing to resemble a 24/7 open house, a virtual tour may be for you.

Need help marketing your tour? Click below for a comprehensive guide to both virtual and video tours.

Maximizing on Video: How to Get More Eyes On Your Video Content


6 Ways Virtual Tours Maximize Marketing Efforts

If you can't choose both, choose wisely

Video tours and virtual tours are more than a luxury now.  Renters are increasingly expecting to engage with this type of media during their apartment search. Seeing how much they can do for both consumers and a property made them the assets they are today.

But don’t just settle for one or the other—consider your options, and make a calculated choice to reap the benefits and maximize your marketing efforts.

Topics:Virtual ToursVideo