Searching for an item by name is simple online, but trying to find something just based on an image can be a difficult task. Now, new technologies led by social platforms like Pinterest, are making picture-based search possible, opening the door up for a multitude of marketing opportunities.
On Monday, Pinterest unveiled a visual search tool that lets people search within images for items. Users select a specific object inside a posted or "pinned" picture; Pinterest then searches through its database for other posts that look similar. It can also help users find out where to buy that or a similar item and how much it costs.
"This not only allows people to discover pictures, but the source of that picture," said marketing technology platform Social Annex co-founder Al Lalani. "This allows consumers to find those ideas and frame them in the context of where to get those ideas."
Pinterest, which was last valued at $11 billion in March, is realizing its potential to create marketing opportunities for companies that want to drive e-commerce. The third-most used social media network according to Pew Research Center has been releasing more advertising options, including Promoted Pins, sponsored posts and click-to-buy functions on its platform.