Internet Marketing Ninjas Blog

5 Ways to Use Reverse Image Search

Since I discovered the joys of reverse image searching as well as various reverse image search tools, it has actually sparked my creativity giving me more and more ideas where it may come in handy.

Here are five ways to use reverse image search for your own benefit.

1. Finding Original Sources (& Duplicate Content)

Reverse: Finding Original Sources
In many (sad) cases a guest contributor would just re-write someone else’s article and never go beyond that. Many would even keep an image from the source. Others try to publish one article on several blogs. And some people use someone else’s graphics in a guest post and claim the images belong to them!

In all the above cases, reverse image search helps locate the original creator! Therefore whenever I am sent an article with an image inside, I always use reverse image search to track down the image source and discover how many times it has been re-published.

2. Searching Similar Images (& More Sources)

When you search out the source of the original photo, you can do a search on that source to find out what else is out there that is similar.

Example: Say, you are a movie blogger and review old movies for a blog. Try doing a reverse search for an original screencap you find and you’ll discover better angles, expressions, action, etc.

Similar search is far from being perfect but sometimes it helps a lot at discovering more articles, screenshots, and sources you wouldn’t have found otherwise. In brainstorming, I use it a lot together with RELATED: search. It’s one of those tricks when you search while not being sure what you want to find.

3. Tracking How Your Infographic Spreads

Many people would republish your infographic without ever letting you know. Tracking your backlinks and mentions will help you discover some of your promoters… but reverse image search will be great additional help for that! It’s also a good way to find unlinked re-uses of your work and reach out to ask for a credit (link).

4. Getting Past the Crop

Image Cropping
If you find a cropped image and wonder what’s behind the crop, just reverse search the image. You will be able to find plenty of examples of the original along with other cropped results.

5. Protecting Copyright (& Get Links!)

Any photographer marketing his creations online has to deal with people re-using images on their blogs and sites. Reverse image search helps in discovering those re-uses and may result some pretty good deals!

Link building tip! When you find anyone reusing your image content, can send them a friendly email to tell them you give your permission if they credit you with the link. Most people who infringe on copyright are not doing so on purpose, or maliciously, so they will be happy to credit you.

What are some of the ways that you have used reverse image searching? Let us know in the comments.

Image Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4.


5 Responses

  1. Great post Ann. I think reverse image searches can be a powerful tool for big brands that tend to have their images stolen from their sites a lot. A good way to not be a mean guy and just tell people to take them down is to let them know they are free to use the image if they just link back to the site. Win win!

  2. Good article!
    However there is no mention of TinyEye?
    Probably the best way to track down copyrighted images on the web and it is free. try it I bet you will be impressed.

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Jim Boykin
Jim Boykin

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Ann Smarty
Ann Smarty

Community & Branding Manager