How to Search by Image with Google

Learn how to conduct a Google image search in this free lesson.

How to search by image with Google

Did you know it's possible to search Google by selecting an image instead of typing keywords? While the process of starting the search is different from a traditional web search, the results page will look familiar. This is a great way to learn more about a particular image or to find similar images.

To begin, go to images.google.com and click the Search by image button on the right side of the search bar.

Search by image

The Search by image box will open. There are two ways to select an image to search. The first method is to paste a URL of the image, then click Search by image.

Paste image URL

To copy the URL of an image, right-click the image, then select Copy Image Location. Note that this option may have slightly different wording depending on the browser you're using.

Copy Image Location

The second method is to click Upload an image, then browse your computer for an image file.

Upload an image

The search results will be similar to a Google web search. Results will display keywords that should return similar search results, sites that contain the image, and images that are visually similar.

Search results

Because our example is an image of a famous painting, we can see that the top results include a gallery site hosting the image and a Wikipedia page about the painting. If we didn't know anything about the painting, we could view the Wikipedia page to learn about its history and painter. If we wanted to find similar images, we could click the gallery site to see other paintings or the visually similar images link to see more search results.

Shortcuts to search by image

There are other ways to access the Search by image feature without going to the Google Images homepage. One way is to paste the image URL into a Google web search bar, then click search by image on the result page.

Clicking search by image in a Google web search

If you're using Google Chrome as your browser, when you right-click the image there will be an option in the context menu to begin a search. This way, you can skip the steps of copying and pasting the image URL into Google's search page.

Starting a search by image in the context menu.

If you're using Firefox as your web browser, you can install the Google Search by Image extension to add the same feature to this browser.