There is no doubt that searching for images on search engines is a little different from searching for other kinds of content. After all, it is hard to tell what an image is saying and you can’t easily translate that into words. What exactly are they portraying? Where were they taken? What are the colors in them? What size are they? Do they qualify as photographs, or are they perhaps paintings, animations or drawings?
This is a break from our Website Rescue projects to show up and coming marketers a new hack that can help them be smarter online gatherers.
The Art of Advanced Image Searching
Fortunately for you, there are some advanced techniques as well as various tools you can use to find more details on the pictures through the internet. Many popular and big name search engines already have advanced image search functions that help you specify the many attributes of the images you are trying to find or even find related images based on an image you already have. There are even some search engines out there with specific image searching tools that are dedicated to helping you find more information about the images you have.
In this post, we will show you how to grow your image searching skills on the internet by teaching you the following:
● How to use Google for an advanced image search
● How to use Google reverse image search
● Why should you use an advanced or reverse image search feature
● The top 5 best-advanced image search engines on the internet.
How to Use Google Images Advanced Search
We picked Google images advanced search to because it is one of the widely used search engines on the internet, but exact options of their advanced image search tool vary a bit from service to service.
To use advanced image search, go to Google search and switch to its image search mode.
You can do this by entering the web address www.google.come in your browser address bar and then click the go button. Then on the top right of your window, you must click on the ‘images’ button.
Search for Anything You Want
Next up, you’ll have to search for an image by clicking on the search box under the Google Images log and type whatever comes to mind or whatever you are looking for. It must be something related to what you are looking for. Once you have entered the search term, hit the enter or return button or click on the magnifying glass to start.
Now Access the Advanced Image Search Options from Google Settings Menu
Once the search results appear, you can start an advanced search by clicking on the settings button at the top right of your search results, just under the search bar. Click the settings and then click advanced search from the drop-down menu that appears.
Type in the Words or Letters That Are Related to What You Are Looking for
The advanced searching options will give you additional text bars to fill. You must start filling them with keywords that best describe what you are looking for. These options include entering image tags, titles, captions, and more. Click on each of the bar and type in the words based on what you are looking for.
Here’s what each bar represents –
All these words – this bar lets you search for images that have all the words you type in here but not necessarily in the same order you type in.
This exact word or phrase – This option will return search results that are tagged with all the words you have typed in. This returns results in exact word order you type in. This is a useful feature if you are looking for a specific piece of information in an image.
Any of these words – this bar searches for images that are related to any of the words you have typed in. So basically, the images that will come out, as a result, will be related to the terms you have used here but never necessarily completely matching all of them. It is a handy little feature if you are looking for multiple specific things in an image.
None of these words – using this option, you can exclude the terms you don’t want Google to look for. In return, the search engine will search for pictures that are not tagged with the words you type in here. You can use this option when you think your main search term may have multiple meanings by filling it and letting the search engine know that you are not looking for these things.
Fine-Tuning Your Advanced Search Options and Then Conducting Your Search
The advanced image search tool by Google also lets you tweak with advanced keyword settings. Here is what all these options represent and what they mean.
Image size – by tweaking this option, you can look for an image with a specific or general size, or even images that are above the specified dimensions or resolutions.
Aspect ratio – This option lets you search for images with a specific shape such as tall, square, panoramic, or wide photos.
Colors in the image – as the name suggests, you can tweak this option to help the search engine find images with full black or white colors. The option can also be used to search for images with transparent backgrounds. This is a useful feature if you are searching for a logo or symbol. Click on the color you want from the extended menu and the search engine will search for images having that color.
Type of image – using this option, you can guide Google to find a specific type of images such as portrait or non-portrait photos, drawing, vector, or animation.
Region – lets you further narrow down your search by letting the search engine know to find images uploaded from a specific area. You can also use this option to find images that were tagged from a specific country or region of the world.
Site or domain – lets you search for images on specific websites. So if you are looking for a specific image on Facebook, you can enter the complete address of the site here and Google will only look for the image on this site.
SafeSearch – This option causes Google to automatically filter out images that it thinks to depict sexual or violent content.
File type – you can enter the type of file you want to search for such as .jpg, .gif, or .png to let Google only search for images under specific file types.
Usage rights – lets you limit your search to images that are not subject to copyright. With this option, you will be able to search for images that you can easily use on your website or edit them in any way you please.
When you have tweaked all of the options according to your needs, you can hit the Advanced search button and begin the search.
If using advanced image search still didn’t find you what you were looking for, then perhaps Google’s reverse image search might help.
How to Use Google Reverse Image Search Feature
The Google reverse image search feature allows you to search for images by using another image as a key search term. The search engine looks for pictures that have similar attributes with the picture you provide. This is actually a very handy feature when you want to see if a certain image has been doctored, plagiarized or taken out of context.
Here’s how you can use the feature.
Go to Google Search and then switch to Google Images
Just like when you were searching for images before, go to Google.com and click on the ‘images’ button on the top right corner of your screen.
Click on the camera icon to initiate the search by image feature
Now instead of typing keyword or search term, simply click the camera button next to the search bar to bring up the interface that allows you to look for images using an image as a source. From there, you have two options. One, you can find an image elsewhere on the internet and upload here to begin the search, or you can directly upload an image from your computer to start the search.
Option A – Enter the image link in the search bar
To begin the search, simply find an image on the internet and copy its URL. Now paste the URL in the address bar and click on search by image to start the search. To copy the link of the source image, simply right click on the image and click on ‘copy image location’ from the menu that appears.
Option B – Upload the image from your computer
When you select this open, Google will open up your explorer window and you can upload an image directly from your device. Alternatively, you can also drag and drop an image from your hard disk to the address bar to automatically start the search related to that image.
So now that you are aware of how to conduct a reverse image search and advanced image search, you may be wondering why would people go to such a length to search for an image? You must be wondering in which occasions these tools actually come in handy? We’re happy that you asked because in the next section we are going to show you various situations where these search tools can come in handy.
Why Use Google’s Advanced and Reverse Image Search Features?
There are many reasons why people use these two features. Here are the most common ones.
The Features Allow You to Determine the Authenticity of Any Picture
High-end photo editing pictures have given tools to people to play with images, allowing them to manipulate an image as much as they see fit. This means that sometimes you would want to see the authenticity of a picture you have. Is it real? Has it been tampered with? Putting this image on the Google reverse image search will reveal all the similar images related to it. This will help you find out if you have the real deal or a picture that has simply been modified, copied, or tampered with.
The Features Let You Find Images with Specific Attributes
The most common usage of advanced or reverse image search is to find an image that closely fits your needs including what you wish you represent. Whether you are looking for a portrait, or an image with specific dimensions, or resolution, these tools let you find exact match images which is a very useful feature if you edit photos or upload them on a blog.
The Features Let You Look for Pictures That You Can Actually Use
Content creators are always on the search for images that they can use on their blogs without causing any copyright infringements. With the examples we showed you above, you can easily look for images that are free to use. Alternatively, you could be a photographer who fears that your images may be being misused by bloggers, news sites, and other websites.
By searching for an image using these advanced tools, you will exactly be able to find out who is using the image without your permission. Google lets you file a complaint against the misuse of images. So if anyone is using your picture without permission, you can have it taken down.
Now that you have learned the common scenarios on why people use the advanced image search features of Google, you must be wondering if there are other tools that let you do the same? We’re glad you asked because we are about to show you a few more image searching tools that can further help you find images. These tools are actually particularly developed for image search and may even be able to return you better results as opposed to Google. So be sure to check them out one by one.
The Top 5 Best-Advanced Image Search Engines on the Internet
If its reverse image search you’re looking for, TinEye is the best out there. One of its most popular and unique features is that in addition to letting you filter your search results by website, it also tells you if the images you are looking for is part of a stock photo or copyrighted collections. Moreover, there is a comparison mode that lets you quickly switch from the original search window to one of the search results to compare two images for differences. TinEye even has a browser extension that can be installed on most popular browsers to make a reverse image search from any picture you find on the internet by just right-clicking.
We have already shown you a lot about how Google search helps you find images. Google has an advanced image search feature as well as a reverse image search feature that you can easily use by uploading a picture on the site. If you don’t have any visual reference of the image available, Google lets you search for images by just entering a keyword or phrase associated with the image. It has a whole bunch of extended parameters as shown above to help you filter your search until you find what you are looking for.
Berify is a new image search engine that specializes in reverse image search. It lets you upload any photo from your mobile device, computer or through social media to quickly check for duplicate photos around the internet. In addition to checking through Google, Bing, Baidu, Yandex, and other big name search engines, it also has its own search algorithm that returns unique search results. The search engine can also look at thumbnails in videos to see if any of the clips have been copied. This is something very unique to the engine and you’ll find this feature nowhere else. The search engine compiles very easy to read reports and even sends you email updates telling you if your images are being used elsewhere. You must, however, keep in mind that this feature is limited to paid subscribers only.
Microsoft’s search engine takes a very personalized approach when it comes to image searches. It has many of the same advanced search options like Google such as allowing you to search by color, size, ratio, class, and usage rights. And it also has a reverse image search feature. But what makes Bing special is that it has a feature that lets you save your search results for later and then organize these results into collections. This feature is very useful if you want to keep track of things that you have already found using Bing. The feature also lets you find more images similar to the ones you already have searched for.
Yandex is a Russian based search engine and it kind of combines the features of both Google and Bing to give you the best of both. It has storing-functions as well as organizing features just like Bing. It also contains many of the popular filter options of Google Search. It provides reverse image search as well. But one of its most unique features is that it also calculates the size of your current computer screen and then search for images that fit that size so you can use them as your desktop background.
This is pretty much all we have to teach you on the reverse and advanced image search using some of the best tools out there. If you are ever worried about your privacy and don’t like the idea of your search terms being tracked by search engines, we highly recommend using TinEye. The search engine never saves or indexes your search terms or pictures. There are other private browsers out there as well but that is a story for some other time.