What do people look for when Googling business photos?

For years, we’ve had the opportunity to see Google business photos. Some taken by you, some by customers, and some street view photos taken by Google and their contributors.

What type of photos generate the most interest? Your finest looking dinner plate? User photos from their 50 yard line seats? Staff photos?

It can definitely be from one or all of these depending on your industry and niche.

With over 240 million views from virtual tour spheres to stills, exteriors to interiors, and clinics to restaurants, we’ve developed a good idea of the trends that people look for when searching for business photos.

google views

Here’s a look at our top-10 viewed photos to view similarities between them.

sarpinos pizza
ruth's chris

Some similarities are very obvious. Almost all of the top-viewed photos are exteriors of entrances taken at an angle. Some have the front door and address, and some view down the street for location recognition. Items to note:

  • All of these photos were taken with either just a smartphone or a 360 camera
  • Most of these photos were walk-by photos with no professional setup
  • In general I expect that more interior photos would be towards the top, although the set for most of these are exterior

Many searches are made with directional intent. “Where is it and how do I get there?” are often good, visual answers to give. It’s always a good idea to include these directional-type photos in addition to showcasing your unique business features that make you tick.

Original vs AI photos

Both ChatGPT and IA imagery started out 2023 with a bang. Prompts from how to make that perfect Minnesota-style pizza sauce (really) to writing term papers are just 2 examples. Just like old-school SEO though, folks are trying to use early AI to manipulate search engines. 

When it comes to local business images, it may come down to which one of these 2 examples users would want to see. One is a real image at Brit’s Pub, and one is a slick AI generated image. Which place is more real and compelling to you?

Lawn bowling at Brit’s

brits in minneapolis

Lawn bowling via AI

lawn bowling

In good timing, if you think about local imagery and its historical connection to emotion, check out A small gift to local SEOs and a big cheer for original images by Miriam Ellis.

Owner vs user-generated photos

Google figured out early that businesses should showcase photos from both themselves and by the customers who visit them. The difference in quality, vibe, and “realness” allow users to see photos that most reflect their wants and needs. These 2 photos show different vibes, but similar in showing why you should come visit.

red wagon

Have professional photography done for your pizzas with those delicious pepperoni cups that make our mouths water! Also, invite your customers to showcase their happy selves for you. Both of these photos can trigger users to come visit you.

Showcasing accessibility

1 in 4 of us have some sort of disability. We all want to see photos that accommodate our needs.

To improve trust, Google is using AI to help you search images visually. With AI, Google is able to parse out items within an image more and more which can really boost your conversions. You can showcase your safety and accessibility features to users to view safely from their own device.

Safety features

chiropractic images

Spoonbridge and Cherry

Countless viewpoints with 360 photos

Users will often find a landmark or point of interest and move around the area with 360 photos. Users can navigate to the items and areas that you have to display, especially if you have multiple calls-to-action in each 360 sphere.

2023 promises to be a big year for Google Images and they’re calling it out as “If you can see it, you can search it”. With multisearch, users can even mix and match text and image searches for closer matches, even with local “near me” searches. How will this affect you as both a consumer and a marketer?

Localmn Interactive provides virtual tours, 360 photography, and local SEO for our tour customers. Browse the site or let’s get started!