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Image search for E-Commerce: What are the benefits?

Image search for E-Commerce: What are the benefits?

Admin 26-05-2021

The world is changing faster and with it, changes the way people interact with brands and businesses. In the past, malls and shopping complexes made up most of the commerce scenario, but it has now changed to online shopping websites and marketplaces.

Initially, people would go to the malls and shopping complexes and see the products available there. Within that limited choice, they would buy the one that suits their needs the best. But with online shopping and e-commerce websites, users can search for exactly the product or service that they want without compromising anything.

People find the product that they want on the e-commerce website and order it to be delivered right to their doorstep. However, with innovations in the process, finding the right product has become even easier than before. A huge credit for that goes to Image search.

In this blog, we will see how image search can help your e-commerce website to reach out to new customers and how you can optimize your website for online image search.

What is Image Search?

Image search is a tool for users to search the web using images instead of textual keywords. Search engines like Google allow its users to reverse search images to find the source of the image.

With applications like Google Lens allow people to do a reverse image search for products that they see in the real or digital world. Using the images they already have (whether digitally downloaded or captured from the real world) users can find similar images on the web based on several image properties.

These include not only the visual properties of the user uploaded image but also the metadata attached with that image the date, alt text, image name, etc. These properties allow the search engine to find the right and related images and other resources for the user to visit.

How to optimize your e-commerce website for image search?

There are certain things to consider while optimizing your e-commerce website for image search. Using high-quality images for your digital catalog and adding relevant metadata. These two things are extremely important to optimize your images for image search on search engines.

An e-commerce website has as many images as it has the products if not more. To increase your SEO rankings, it is important to optimize all the images you have on your e-commerce website.

Here are some ways you can optimize the images of your products on your e-commerce website.

Optimize your image file size

Larger images often affect the page loading time. The larger the image, the longer it will take to load. To ensure that you can achieve the goal of your image, it is important to use the right image type and size.

Based on its properties, there are three different types of images: jpg, png, and gif. Choose the file type according to what you want to achieve. If you want your image to have a balance of quality and optimal file size, using a jpg image is the right choice, if your image quality is more important than the file size then png image should be used, however, if you are putting an animated image, then your best choice is a gif image.

To optimize your web page’s loading time, keep your image file size within 100 kb. That way, your customers will not have to wait for long to load the page. As you may already know, if your page takes more than 3 seconds to load, your prospective customers will leave the page and visit your competitor’s.

Another thing that you want to consider getting right is the image dimensions. With the right image dimensions, your images will not look unnatural on the web page.

Add relevant image name and alt tag

Image name allows the search engine to understand what your image is about whereas the alt attribute also increases accessibility to a larger set of people. Use your keyword as the image name so that your target customers can easily find it on the search engine.

For example, if you are selling a red cashmere sweater of medium size, you can name your image as “red-cashmere-sweater-medium.jpg” instead of what your camera may have named it by default.

Make sure that your image’s alt attribute is also just as straightforward and descriptive as the image name so that the search engine and visually challenged people can understand what your image is all about.

Furthermore, if you upload more than one image of the product, you can name them according to the product angle i.e. “product-front.jpg”, “product-side.jpg”, etc.

Add images to the sitemap

Sitemaps are files that allow search engine crawlers to find your images fast and index them on the search engine. This makes users find your images (and thus your website) faster.

Since the images and their properties are listed in the sitemap, it also shows up in the search engine’s image results.

Benefits of optimizing for image search

There are several benefits of optimizing your website for image search. Here we have listed some of them.

It allows customers to find you via images

Customers can reverse search or visual search an image that they already have to find similar products on your website. Customers do not like to spend too much time searching for the product that they want and a long catalog on your website will be of no help if they cannot find the one thing that they need.

Searching for the image of the product, they can directly reach the product page from the search engine and order it to be home-delivered.

It increases your page loading speed

Optimizing for image search also means optimizing your website images so that your page ranks higher on the search engine result page. Optimizing your image type and size allows it to load faster.

This way customers do not have to wait for your e-commerce web page to load for longer.

This also increases customer retention as you get more chances to upsell with sections like “Frequently bought together”.

And that leads us to our next benefit.

It increases your revenue

Customers showcase high buying intent while searching for a particular product on the search engine. When the customers can find what they were looking for, they would buy it from your e-commerce website.

You can further upsell them with products that are relevant to their recent purchase.

It reduces the bounce rate

Users conducting image search are looking for a specific product and if they find it on your website, there is a lower chance of them leaving the page without checking out the product details. And if it matches their preference, they may also buy it.

Hence, optimizing your page for image search also reduces bounce rate which contributes to a higher ranking on the search engine result page.


Can you search with an image?

Yes. Google and similar other search engines allow users to search the web using an image. In your smartphones, apps like Google Lens help you search the web using an image. Moreover, many e-commerce websites like Amazon and Flipkart allow users to upload an image to search for similar products on their websites.

What is the main purpose of visual search in e-commerce?

Visual search or image search allows users to find products similar to the ones in the image they have. They can simply upload the image of the product they are interested in and view and purchase similar products on the e-commerce website.

With image search, users do not have to remember the name and type it down in the search bar to search for the product or purchase it.

How do I do a visual search online?

If you are using a desktop, simply go to Google images and click on the camera icon to upload an image or the URL of the image and click on Search by image. If you are using a smartphone, you can either use the Google Lens app to click a picture of the product or the Google app to upload a photo of the product that you want to search for.


Image search is now one of the trends in e-commerce websites. It not only improves your website’s SEO but also improves your customer experience. There are top digital marketing agencies in India that can help you optimize your e-commerce website for image search.

To be up-to-date with the online shopping website competition, you must optimize your e-commerce website for image search and boost your business.

Tell us your thoughts in the comments below and if you find this blog helpful, make sure that you share it with your peers.

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