Arguably, the most exciting part of the future is its unpredictability. Although that doesn’t always mean we can throw around wild predictions, the changing atmosphere of digital affordances allows us to constantly evolve strategies that can get at customers more effectively. In this regard, we’ve heard of voice search making its way into mass use, but there’s a new player here to stay: visual search

We are visual creatures and we process images much faster than text and aptly, the need for visual search is growing exponentially. An EMarketer study showed that spending powerhouse age category, millennials, would prefer to search by image as opposed to other options such as live chat, AR and even shoppable links.

First: Pinterest visual search. Now: visual search Google, Amazon, Bing & more

Most of us have a smartphone and we tend to take pictures of everything. We’re not simply talking about scenic images but mundane everyday photos of things like a business card, an instagrammable restaurant or even a trendy clothing piece. The future of visual search would allow a user to convert those images into tangible results. For instance, taking a photo of a business card could automatically add those details into your contact list. The picture of a jacket you took at a storefront can show you where you can purchase the very same piece or something similar. Visual search will allow you to read the image and procure results accordingly.

Pinterest was the OG platform that catapulted this into limelight. The platform launched its new tool: Shop the Look, which allows users to shop products shown on an image. Google has also jumped on the visual bandwagon with their release of the Google Lens. Bing and Amazon are also playing in this field to garner the highest visual search traffic.

The future of search - visual search
The future of search – visual search

What does this mean for SEO specialists?

We are moving towards a visual search function and it’ll be a gross understatement not to optimise images. Image SEO is more important than ever and it’s not hard to gear your images for visual search engines. Marking up your images, using ALT tags, improving photo quality, descriptive file names and captions all play a part in enhancing your images for visual search.

Visual or Voice Search?

Visual search will certainly not take over voice search. Rather, it will leverage on the limitations of it and vice versa. The key point to take home is that businesses should optimise on all three fronts: voice, visual and text search. If you are outsourcing your SEO services, make sure your digital marketing agency Singapore is ready to take advantage of the new forms of search so you’re on top of the competition.

On the lookout for an SEO specialist Singapore? Talk to the experts at Digital Squad Singapore to see how you can optimise your business for all things search.