Google Multisearch and How it Will Affect SEO
What is Multisearch?
Simply put, Google multisearch lets you use your phone’s camera to search by an image and a text query. Google Lens powers it, and you can combine that with a text query to search for visual items like products and places.
How to Get to Multisearch?
To get started, simply open up the Google Lens app on Android or iOS and tap the search icon (and a + icon to its left). Then either search for one of your screenshots or snap a photo of the world around you.
With multisearch, you can ask a question about an object in front of you or how it would look in different colors, brands, or attributes. Give it a go yourself by using Lens to:
- Screenshot an outfit you like, tap the search icon, and type “green” to find more pieces in your preferred color.
- Snap a photo of your coffee table and add the “dining set” query to find a dining set to match your existing furniture.
- Take a picture of your new puppy and add the query “care instructions” to find suggestions on caring for your new pet.
What is “Near Me” Multisearch?
The Near Me feature of multisearch lets you search for products, services, or anything else via your camera. You can also find local results. For example, if you want to find a restaurant that serves a specific dish, you can do so with the Near Me feature.
Where is Multisearch Available?
Google’s new feature, called multisearch, is available now and should be available as a “beta feature in English in the U.S.” But Google said that the Near Me feature will not be going live until later this year.
How Will Google Multisearch Affect SEO?
Google’s John Mueller was recently asked how Google Lens multisearch affects search engine optimization. His answer was thoughtful and provided good information on the subject.
This is the question that was posed to Mueller:
“How does multisearch and Google Lens – can that affect SEO?”
John Mueller answered by first explaining how Google Lens multisearch is still a new thing.
“So… this is something I think that is still fairly new and how multisearch works. We recently did a blog post about this. And you can do it in Chrome, for example, and on different types of phones. Essentially what happens is you can take a photo of any image from a website, and you can search using that image. So, for example, if you find a specific piece of clothing or anything basically that you would like to find more information on, you can kind of like highlight that section of the image and then search for more things that are similar.”
Mueller then discussed SEO in the context of multisearch in this way:
“And from an SEO point of view, that’s not really something that you would do manually to make that work. But rather, if your images are indexed, then we can find your images, and we can highlight them to people when they’re searching in this way. So it’s not that there’s like a direct effect on SEO or anything like that. But it’s kind of like if you’re doing everything right, if your content is findable in search, if you have images on your content and those images are relevant, then we can guide people to those images or to your content using multiple ways.”
John Mueller said that multisearch is not a new development for SEO, but he believes that it will require some changes in how we approach content and image strategy.
We believe that Google’s new multisearch feature will require webmasters to change their SEO strategies, including reconsidering how content and image will work together for search results.
Multisearch at Google IO 2022
There were several hints at Google IO 2022 as to how multisearch could be integrated with MUM and other search systems. For example, many attending the event felt that Google may be bringing back a “Google Glass” system or will be expanding their AR technology to include multisearch. Either way, we know that Google is looking to include new ways people may want to search, and this looks to be another way to assist others in their search needs.