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How To use Google reverse image search

As much as I heart Pinterest, sometimes trying to trace the original source of an image is a real pain, and you need to resort to reverse image searching in attempt to correctly credit your source.

Of course there are sites like TinEye which offer the service, but did you know about Google reverse image search? It’s free and it’s easy to use, so there’s no excuse for not crediting. There are two ways to search, here’s how….

How to use google reverse image search

Image Search – Search By Image URL

Navigate to the image you are trying to source.
Right click on the image and copy the URL.
Go to Google Images
Paste the copied URL in to the text input field.

How to do a google image search by URL

Click the little camera icon.

Image Search – Search By Uploaded Image

Download the image to your desktop
Go to Google Images
Drag your image over the Google text input field and you will get the following…

How to do a reverse image search using google - Cybher

The Image Results

Google will then do what Google does best and provide you with the search results of sites where that image has been found…

How to do a reverse image searchFor this example I purposely used an image that I created and know wouldn’t have been shared. I have a neat response of web pages which contain my image. The older the post, the more likelihood it’s the source but you still have to investigate. The search will pick up shares on G+ too.

Google image search is a visual search, so if filenames have been changed, you will still see the results.

It’s also a great way to see if people have been sharing (or stealing!) your content but beware, it’s addictive!


Sian To is Cybher founder, social media consultant, blogger, mother, workaholic, geek. Passionate about promoting women in tech and best practice in social whilst soaking up as much useful information as she can in the process.

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