What Is Google Lens, & What Is It Used For?

SEO
By Julie Snow | December 2, 2021 | 7 min read

Imagine interacting with real-world objects all around you, simply by using your phone’s camera. You could translate a Chinese menu with ease, get the history of a neighborhood statue, or shop online for a similar sofa you see in a model home (but in your actual price range).

Guess what? You can. In fact, you can do all that and more with the touch of a button using Google Lens. Obviously, you want to learn more about this cool, convenient capability, right? We sure did when we first heard about it!

That’s why we’ve put together a primer explaining what Google Lens is, but we didn’t stop there. Since we’re a digital marketing agency, we also highlighted how this technology can increase traffic to your website and so much more. You’ll soon wonder what your business ever did without it.

What Is Google Lens?

When we first heard the term “Google Lens,” we assumed it had to do with those goofy glasses (Google Glass) that were all the rage in 2012. But our assumption was wrong—kind of. Rather than wearing an accessory to get information on the world surrounding you, Google Lens has incorporated the technology into your already-in-hand smartphone.

Google Lens uses a smartphone’s camera and image recognition technology to search the web for results based on what it sees. This capability is built into Google phones or can be installed as an app for other phone brands.

Here is a list of features to help you better understand what Google Lens can do:

  • Shop for any product that catches your eye without having to use the search box.
  • Scan and translate text to look up words, add events to your calendar, and create a contact.
  • Explore what businesses are nearby, including historical facts, hours of operation, and ratings.
  • Look up restaurant menus, including photos of specific dishes and what people have said about them.
  • Identify plants and animals using photo search to satiate your curiosity.
  • Get homework help with videos and step-by-step instructions.

Aren’t you excited to try these features? Google Lens has made accessing important and interesting information easier than ever by simply using your camera.

What is Google Lens Used For?

By using your smartphone’s camera, Google Lens helps you simplify the way you search for information. It gives you a quick way to find information from images you take or find online. Here are some of the things Google Lens can be used for:

  • Translate Image Text
  • History of Monuments
  • Convenient Online Shopping
  • Identifying Plants and Animals
  • Homework Help
  • Business Information

Google Lens changed the way we can interact with our environment and get information, making it useful for both personal and professional use.

How Does Google Lens Work?

Google Lens works through advanced image recognition technology with the camera on your smartphone or device. When you take a photo, or aim your camera at something, Google uses its advanced image recognition to analyze in real-time giving you relevant information and search results.

How to Get Google Lens

As an Android, Google Lens might already be integrated with your device’s camera user depending on what device you have. If you open your camera and the Google Lens icon is not there, you can download the Google Lens app. If you are an iOS user and have the Google app, you can access Google Lens through there or you can download the app as well.

Google Lens For Your Business

As much as we love Google Lens for our personal use, as marketers, we are also excited about the possibilities this technology can bring to your business. We know the potential when it comes to helping you gain more traction in your industry, more contacts for networking, and more converted customers to your brand.

Raise Brand and Site Awareness

If a person focuses their lens on anything related to your brand or your products, it will open either a shopping page or a search result page for that image. These relevant, useful, and location-based results can guide the person’s brand awareness and instantly lead them to your website.

Optimize E-Commerce

When it comes to online shopping, Google Lens makes it easier than ever for browsers to become buyers. All a person has to do is a quick photo search with the app, and Google Lens will find the same (or a similar) product of yours that can be bought with the touch of a button.

This convenience and time savings optimizes the shopping experience and gets customers excited to spend their money with you.

Network Instantly

In addition to helping you gain more customers and sales, Google Lens is also a great networking tool. How’s that? It allows you to save, search, and expand on the contact information found on business cards.

Here’s how to use Google Lens to scan business cards to instantly create new contacts:

  1. Use the Google Lens app or the Lens icon on your photos to take a picture of a business card.
  2. Google will scan and load information from the card.
  3. Google will create a contact for you.

The point of this is to broaden your contact list and have the instant ability to network with anyone who passes you their business card, without having to take the time to manually enter each one.

How to Optimize Google Lens For Business

Since you obviously want to take advantage of all the benefits available for your business, here’s how to optimize for Google Lens in six simple steps.

1. List Your Products on Google Shopping

It makes sense that Google Lens works best when the products being searched for are listed on Google Shopping. Simply open an account in the Google Merchant Center and “Add product data.”

2. Add Lots of Product Images

When you add products to Google Shopping, be sure to add plenty of product images.

Also, make sure your logo is featured in at least one of your images, such as in a picture of your storefront or featured on one of your products (not a watermark). This helps Google read and recognize your brand.

3. Check the Size and Quality of Images

Since large images load slowly, use a compression tool like Compress JPEG to shrink them to be more user-friendly. However, check to see if your images crop correctly and maintain clarity when uploaded.

4. Add Labels, Keywords, and Alt Text to Your Images

Short, descriptive image filenames and labels help Google’s photo search algorithm work well.

Keywords should be used in the filenames and throughout the Alt text.

Alt (alternative) text is short sentences explaining what the image is showing. It gives Google bots information about the visual content you’re providing.

5. Embed Photos with EXIF and IPTC Data

EXIF (Exchangeable Image File Format) is a unique file structure for storing each digital image. Data includes the date, time, camera model, settings, location, and copyright info. The more precise this data is, the easier it is for Google to connect users with your product or website.

IPTC (International Press Telecommunications Council) data is photo metadata that includes information about the visual content, including people, company, credits, property rights, and instructions.

6. Add Structured Data Markup to Your Website

Structured data markup is snippets of code added to your HTML for the purpose of helping Google read the information listed on your site (for example, if your site is an article, recipe, announcement, etc.).

Learn More About How Your Business Can Reach Your Target Audience

Knowing what Google Lens is could be a game-changer, but Big Leap wants you to know that there are many other ways to leverage Google Lens for your business to get both the exposure and the customers you deserve.

To learn more about all the ways your business can reach and nurture your target audience using effective (and cost-effective) strategies, contact us today to get a free multi-point site audit, reputation audit, and competitive gap analysis!

Get a Free 30-minute consultation

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