Granted that car and bike showrooms take safety precautions seriously, certain HNI customers may still be wary of venturing outside. A test drive at home is a mandatory requirement in most cases but how about giving the customer an immersive experience – as if they are in the showroom and looking at all the glossy rides from all angles. A Matterport 3D virtual tour does exactly that. The customer can browse or walk-through the showroom at their own pace, using any device.
The showroom can embed this virtual tour on their website, share as a simple link (my.matterport) on social media or messages. No need for HD videos and photos anymore.
The below VT was captured on Independence Day, simply because it was a holiday – we didn’t have to blur out staff and customers, if we could help it. The Matterport Pro2 camera was used here although the Leica BLK 360 was a good option, considering the morning sunlight streaking through the glass walls.
Click on the next scan point (shown as white circles on the floor) to move to that area. Drag left, right and in any direction to look around in 360 degrees.
If you’re using a desktop, press the arrow keys to navigate comfortably.
If you don’t want to do either of these things, just click the “play” button to automatically view the highlights of the entire capture.
As a franchise or manufacturer, the analytics for the number of views can be seen in the back-end of the Matterport portal. This includes the impressions and unique visitors.
For a business, such a Matterport tour not only enables their audience to experience the interiors from any device or a VR headset, but also gives them auto generated videos and HD photos.
These videos (480p MP4 files) and HD photos can be used on Instagram, YouTube or in other marketing collaterals. Typically a Matterport Service Provider like Adostrophe does not charge for these add-ons, even if some professional editing is required.
Traditional images or videos shows the customer what the business wants them to see. When it comes to a Matterport Virtual Tour, the customer can view things as is, in their own pace. Such kind of transparency builds trust, especially because the tours are not edited.
The above image is a snapshot from the VT, which was cropped and slightly edited for light and colour.
Servicing and Workshops
Sales is all glitter and glow – service on the other hand is action-packed and possibly cluttered. There may not be a critical need to display this section to new customers. Moreover, certain technology and techniques are unique to the outlet and as a policy, not to be photographed or advertised.
In some cases, the workshop might be the core of the business with nothing to do with sales. The below virtual tour is of a high-end cycle workshop in Indiranagar 100 ft rd, Bengaluru.
Feel free to play around with the distance measurement tool to check the showroom area or the bike components such as the top tube or chain stay.
Tips for 3D Photographers
If you’re planning to offer Matterport 3D capture services as a profession, or an in-house photographer for the automotive brand, here are some tips that might interest you.
- Use a professional camera like the IR-based Matterport Pro2 or the laser-based Leica BLK 360, for optimum resolution.
- Prepare the showroom or workshop in advance, ensuring the management that staff or customers should not be around. This means going in early, before the opening time or choosing a holiday.
- Check the entire area first making sure it is presentable. Watch out for door signs, stray tea mugs, a chair not orderly placed, etc. Request housekeeping to help, if necessary.
- Start scanning from the entrance and capture as many as possible. You can always delete scans later, in case someone was moving around in the frame. Scan outdoors in the end.
- Unlike Real Estate, showrooms can be tricky because its glass instead of walls. You’ll have to put in extra effort to guide the AI – shorter scan distances and marking windows/glass immediately after a scan. Rescan if you get an alignment error.
- iPhones and iPads may have limited WiFi range, so if you go further to hide yourself from the shot, you may lose connection with the camera. In this context, if you hide behind a standee, banner or even a car, check left and right because glasses may show your reflection.
- While capturing the side view of a car, try placing the camera in between the front and rear windows, so that the pillar masks the camera reflection to a degree. In certain cases, a window can also be lowered down.
- Publishing the VT as is could speed up load times. As an option, you may duplicate the scan in your mobile device (capture app) and add Mattertags in a separate space.
- Mark glass walls as mirrors or windows and crop sprays for a clean dollhouse.
- Add highlight reels for viewers’ convenience who may not know to pan around or click to move to next scan point. Note that if you add 360 scans, you won’t be able to customise the transitions in the next slideshow or walkthrough.
- At the end of the tour, place a regular 3D scan, maybe at the entrance so the walkthrough instructions are displayed automatically.
- Lifting a heavy camera around and concealing yourself at every scan can be tiring. Ensure you’ve eaten well before hand, avoid phone calls during the scans, and be friendly to staff and housekeeping. If something goes wrong after processing, you can always rescan another day.
Capturing car showrooms can be fun. Matterport virtual tours may be a game-changer which could potentially increase the number of bookings, as opposed to traditional 2D imagery. Think of it as contributing to India’s economical development. VR and 3D scanning are future-proof technologies, so if you’re thinking about getting into it, you’re thinking right.
Email us for any questions or feedback. Happy Independence Day!