What’s the Difference Between a Video Tour and Virtual Tour?

cartoon home on tv with old camera and film

Once you’ve made a listing active, you have the option of enhancing your listing by adding a video tour (a film of the property) or virtual tour (a picture slideshow).

To Add a Video or Virtual Tour
Go to Add/Change tab
Select Change
Enter in MLS# or select out of list
Under Multimedia Section select Videos or Virtual Tours
Select Add Video or Add Virtual Tour

change screen screen shot

So far so good, right? But this is where things can get a little tricky. Photos and documents are the only type of multimedia that can actually be uploaded into a Flexmls listing. Because of their large file sizes, videos and virtual tours must be hosted outside of Flexmls and added as either HTML code (aka embed code) or as a URL link.

Wait, I know what a URL is, but what is HTML code?
For virtual tours, Flexmls requires you to paste a URL link to where the video is hosted. Most of us are familiar with URLs (aka Uniform Resource Locators) as being the “web addresses” that specify where resources are available online. For example, http://armls.com/ is a URL.

For videos, Flexmls requires you to paste HTML code to embed the video into the MLS webpage. HTML (aka Hyper Text Markup Language) is the standard markup language used to structure web pages and format their content. Basically, elements of HTML form the building blocks of webpages. And HTML code looks a little different than a URL. For example, <iframe src=”https://vimeo.com/167484414″> is HTML code.

Where should I host my videos and virtual tours?
You can use any website that follows Rule 8.23, which states that “Media cannot direct the user in any way to contact information or other information about real estate or broker or any other individual entity with a connection to the business of real estate.” This means that sites like YouTube or Vimeo Basic aren’t allowed because they link to other videos that could potentially link back to a listing agent, broker, or brokerage. Finally, all videos and virtual tours must be unbranded and cannot contain your contact information.

 But if I can’t use YouTube, what should I use?
A good option for hosting your videos is Google Drive, as long as you have the Viewing Settings set to View Only (instructions here). Another option is to use the free version of Property Panorama, which ARMLS offers as a subscriber benefit under the Products tab in Flexmls. Agents can also conduct their own research for other products that host videos and virtual tours.

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