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Visual search and SEO

Published by : PDM on 01 February 2018

In SEO the term “Visual search” refers to an algorithm used to rank personal shopping sites. The visual search algorithm involves an active scan of images for a particular product or product feature to help search users find exactly what they’re looking for or something similar. Likewise, the visual search algorithm helps retail brands to connect online shoppers/consumers with their products.

Many visual search tools are used in everyday life.
Search users use visual search tools to find product images from a mobile device or via the web to find the best visual match, such as price match, colour match, style match etc. Visual search tools have created a shift in consumer behaviour. Well-known e-commerce brands that have incorporated “search-by-photo” include ASOS, eBay, Wayfair and Whirlpool.

Search-by-image is a common search tool in Google search: Images.
Discovery through images based on keyword searches can help a search user (consumer) find something of interest to them, to then potentially connect with the retailer by visiting the website page link, to then potentially make a purchase or learn more. Image search optimisation (image SEO) can benefit an e-commerce brand because it creates the ‘opportunity’ for a brands product images to be interpreted by the search engines and seen by the search users. 

Search-by-image is a common search tool in social media sites such as Pinterest and Instagram.
By a brand being socially active on a variety of image-driven social media sites alongside an image SEO strategy, can benefit a brand tremendously within their niche market; and this does not only appeal to e-commerce but can appeal to personal websites, photo sharing sites, writing or author sites, community sites, brochure or catalogue sites, informational or blogging websites or other.

Search-by-image is a common search tool within photo recognition apps
Photo recognition apps are very commonly distributed among fashion and beauty retailers, and home and garden. Apps like Visa app, PlantSnapp, FlowerChecker. There are also apps for audio recognition. A leader in music discovery goes by the Shazaam. Responsive app design and development is an emerging trend in the mobile SEO sector.