Visual search technology is generating curiosity among technology mavens. Visual searching is simply conducting an Internet search using pictures. Think of visual searching as being very similar to the type of technology you might see on television shows where the police try to find a criminal based on a photo. When they scan the photo into the computer and run it through a database, they may retrieve a match, leading to the apprehension of the perpetrator.
Visual search technology works by allowing an Internet user to search for items by using a photograph. For example, an individual sitting in a park might notice someone with a nice handbag, skirt, jacket or pair of shoes. The individual might discreetly use a smart phone to snap a photo of the clothing item and use that photo to search for the same item or one that is very similar. Uploading the photo online to locate an item where it is sold helps the consumer avoid unnecessary trips to the mall or searching websites.
Consumers who love shopping online often become frustrated when looking for a specific item on a retailer’s website. A shopper may finally give up when he or she cannot find an item after clicking through hundreds of pages. When visual search technology becomes commonplace in online shopping, it will be a hit with both retailers and shoppers because it will make it quick and easy to locate an item. The retailer will benefit because if shoppers find what they are looking for on the first website, they are not likely to leave and search for it on another site. Additionally, the retailer can offer other options that may be more affordable or on the higher end if that what a customer prefers.
Imagine seeing an unusual landscape plant, taking a photo of the plant and being able to find a garden center or nursery that sells the item within minutes. Information that might be available includes where the plant grows best and how to care for it. Having these details could help a homeowner select plants and trees that work best for a specific climate or soil type, which means no more wasting money or time planting items that have little chance of growing.
Another application for visual search technology is house hunting. A potential home buyer might see a home for sale, but maybe he or she does not particularly like the neighborhood. When the home buyer uses a visual search program, he or she can use a photo of the home to find the same model or similar homes in a desired neighborhood. Like shopping for clothes, this eliminates searching several sites or driving around to find a house to buy.
Visual search technology is still emerging, but Slyce, a company known as a leader in visual search technology is working diligently to make visual searching more user-friendly. Slyce applications work on mobile devices and desktop computers, making it convenient for consumers to find what they need anywhere, anytime.