Image-Based Search is a must-have for your e-commerce website; Here’s why.
Every day you carry out hundreds of searches on the internet. Be it in written form or spoken, every day you are asking websites to find something for you. You might do it by typing in some text or even using your voice to run some searches. But what if you do not have the words to describe what you want to find? You have an image of a product you like, but you do not know what brand it belongs to. How do you search for it then?
For example, you spotted a stranger carrying an incredibly handsome black leather wallet. There was no visible logo, and you did not have the time to inquire about the wallet from him. You did manage to click a picture, but what good is a picture alone?
With computer vision, though, that single picture is more than enough to get you what you want.
Image-based search is one of the latest trends in computer vision, which is the image-and-video processing arm of Artificial Intelligence. Using image-based search, a user can directly upload an image of what s/he wants to buy, and the e-commerce platform displays results – or gives product recommendations – that are similar to the input image.
If you think this technology is abstract as of now, think again. Google, via its product “Lens”, has already taken up the mantle and is performing high-quality image-based searches.
Coming back to the example of the wallet given above, Google Lens can help you to find the exact product through its logo, or similar wallets without describing its features in a search bar (Something that we usually do on e-commerce websites like Amazon).
You can even expand your general knowledge by snapping a picture of a plant, / animal, or anything else you find interesting around you, and use Google Lens to discover what it is – again, without struggling to describe it.
The same technology can be found on the Amazon shopping app, by clicking on the camera icon next to the search bar, which shows you the same product, and if not, a few products from the same category.
Realtor.com is another e-commerce platform that implements computer vision-based image analytics and search. You can easily click a picture of the ‘for sale’ sign of a property that you like, and you’ll get its complete real estate listing along with a few photos.
Benefits of an image-based search for e-commerce businesses
As the above examples convey, an AI powered image-based search component is extremely beneficial for your business’ online platform, especially if it is in the e-commerce space. Here’s how exactly:
- It improves the customer’s experience by making it easy for him/her to find what he/she needs.
- Leads to greater accuracy in results since input reference is close to what customer needs.
- Can attract new customer segments through visual data.
While image-based search has been refined exponentially over the years, more polishing is still underway. Even in its present form, it is immensely capable of transforming customer experience and thus, the state of a business. Question is: will that business be yours?