Visual Search is the latest trend to take the world of digital marketing and Artificial Intelligence (AI) by storm! It has the potential to revolutionize the way consumers find and buy products. So, what is it? And how can your business capitalize on this new marketing trend?
What is Visual Search?
Visual Search utilizes internet images, photographs, and screenshots as stimuli for online searches. Modern visual search technology uses AI to understand the content and context of those images to return a list of related results. Pinterest, Google, Amazon and Bing are the main visual search engines currently available. A Visual Search allows the eCommerce industry to suggest thematically/stylistically-related items to shoppers in a way that would be nearly impossible with text queries alone.
Why is Visual Search important?
Visual Search is changing the way we interact with the world (especially online). Our culture is dominated by the visual. This is because the human brain is extremely visual, receiving 90% of its information in a visual format and identifying images within 13 milliseconds.
Additionally, it has been found that 62% of millennials prefer the ability to visually search over any other new technological approach. Images are returned for 19% of search queries on Google, and that number is steadily rising. On Pinterest, there are over 600 million visual searches each month. By 2021, it is expected that brands whose websites support visual and voice search will increase their eCommerce revenue by 30%.
How can you Capitalize on this Trend?
- Build Visual Search into your web inventory.
Currently, only 8% of retailers have done this.
- Boost organic image visibility.
Especially important for SEO in Visual Search is schema markup and metadata. This is the only source of textual information for visual search engines to crawl. Besides, metadata strengthens your ability to drive traffic to your website (as well as to specific products on your site).
- Advertise on Pinterest.
With Pinterest’s well-developed visual search engine and its enormous market, this is a smart place for retailers to advertise their products. Consider advertising your products alongside similar items for maximum impact.
- Add images to your sitemap.
Ensure your images are displayed clearly and free of clutter, allowing visual applications ease in processing them. Optimize your images for size and type, and carefully chose your image titles. HERE is an excellent resource to walk you through adding images to your sitemap.
Currently, Visual Search is still in its early stages of development. However, the impact it will have (and is having already) for eCommerce retailers is huge!