• January 22 2024

How Visual Search is Paving the Way for Street-to-Shop

And we are back! This week, we look at the latest technology developments in fashion, from the applications of AI-Powered Visual Search to the latest trendy shoe that is taking the market by a storm.

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The Hot Topic

Ever since the introduction of ChatGPT, the now popular AI conversational platform, there have been several discussions surrounding the advantages and disadvantages of AI, as well as the workforce’s growing adaptation to it, demonstrating its widespread impact on various aspects of our lives.

In the past few years, ecommerce sites have taken the extra step of making their search bars more sophisticated by incorporating advanced ecommerce search engine tools powered by AI. This has revolutionized the way customers shop.

Retail & AI: Visual Search

A major integration of AI technology into online retail has been that of Visual Search. This enables customers to find products by simply using images instead of depending on text-based search inputs. The AI technology within this feature analyzes the uploaded image and generates a list of exact or similar purchasable products. Its popularity lies in its convenience.

Generally, visual search is more intelligent than text search. It offers accurate outcomes in a jiffy, so customers don’t have to exert much effort in finding what they are looking for. Even TikTok Shop is reportedly testing a visual search function outside of the US. This feature would enable users to take photos and search TikTok’s shopping inventory based on the image, potentially enhancing the platform’s shopping experience.

The unparalleled efficacy of visual search in retrieving relevant results enhances the shopping experience. An example of this for us at ViSenze recently is the massive growth of Image Search in the Indian ecommerce Market, wherein retailers have to account for a wide variety of languages and demographics.

The visual search experience for the consumer is similar to presenting an inspiration image to a shop assistant in a retail store. The assistant would observe the details of the item pictured and, based on their familiarity with the store’s collection, put together a selection of pieces with a similar aesthetic.

Staying Fashion Forward

Visual Search easily allows the customer to stay up to date with trends, despite an apparent lack of product knowledge. An example of this would be the Adidas Samba shoes, which were hailed as the ‘it shoe’ towards the end of last year, resulting in a massive trend of 2023. Released 74 years ago, it saw a resurgence in popularity after being spotted on the feet of fashion’s biggest influencers. These included the likes of Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Frank Ocean, as well as Jonah Hill who also specifically had a personal Samba collaboration.

Social media’s role in this was vital, with images of such personalities wearing the Samba shoes flooding Instagram and TikTok. In such a case, it would be easy for viewers to take a screenshot of these shoes and upload it to Visual Search. This is regardless of whether or not they know the model of the shoe popular among celebrities, as the Visual Search does the work for them. By bringing ease into the shopping process to increase instant accessibility of the customers’ desires, Visual Search plays a pivotal role in the increase of sales.

Advantages of using a Visual Search AI feature in an ecommerce search engine

No more speculating keywords: Through the use of search-by-image tools, customers can save time and effort when looking for products. Rather than spending time trying different search terms and phrases, they can just submit an image they like and get exact results quickly.

  1. Uncovering exceptional products: Retailers with large product inventories can benefit from visual search tools to improve the discovery of their products. High-intent shoppers may not have the patience to scroll through multiple pages of search results, so with visual search, the most appealing items are likely to appear on the initial page.
  2. Increased proficiency in suggesting pertinent items: The outcome of a standard text query is not always in line with what the customer is looking for. Image searching instruments can identify definite style elements in an image the user has uploaded and then use that data to display only comparable items.
  3.  Direct link between motivation and acquisition: Viewers can take advantage of visual search technology to quickly find items for purchase after seeing something inspiring. They can search using images they took while shopping in stores, saved social media posts used for inspiration, and even screenshots taken from retail catalogs.

The advantages of this technology accumulate to a smooth and beneficial shopping experience. Moreover, when retailers have access to image search, every area of their business, from customer service and clienteling to chatbot assistance, can use it to help and amaze customers.

Refer to the following to know more about the Adidas Sambas trend:

HighSnobiety | HarpersBazaar


Click here to read about evolution of ecommerce search