Amazon Now Lets You Search for Products Seen in Photos

A man is seen on his phone overlaid on an Amazon search bar.

Amazon has unveiled new search features meant to make finding products on mobile easier, all while keeping pace with services like Google and Pinterest.

As TechCrunch reports, the Amazon app will now offer multi-modal search, which lets users input both text and images, according to a release from the company. Users can also share photos and use the “Find-on-Amazon” tool to bring up similar items. Amazon says these updates are meant to help people looking for a specific item without spending time scrolling through listings that might not be relevant.

Three iPhones show how the Amazon app can now search using text and image.

“One of the most complex scenarios we encounter is helping a customer find what they want when they don’t know what they are looking for. For example, you need a replacement part for a home appliance, but don’t know the name of the part,” Amazon explains in a release.

In this case, the person can search using the picture and type in the brand or model to get a more accurate result.

The iPhones show how users can search images to bring up product listings.

It will also be possible to upload an image and search for similar items pictured without knowing what the product is at all. The Find-on-Amazon tool will automatically bring up listings, and this works even if there are multiple items in frame. This seems to work similarly to tools provided by Google and Pinterest, both of which will automatically scour listings based on whatever is in an image shared to their respective services.

Of course, Amazon has even more to gain by removing the friction going from seeing an item they might like to clicking the “Buy Now” button.

A person uses the Amazon app on an iPhone to see how an appliance would look on their counter using AR.

And once people actually find whatever item they might have been looking for, Amazon’s app now aims to make it easier to visualize what it will look like at home. The app’s augmented reality feature has been upgraded to show how items might look on table tops, for example, which will improve its usability.

Amazon also says it will automatically populate recent queries once someone clicks the search bar, improve autocomplete and spelling corrections on its platform, and offer enhanced related search suggestions. Amazon will further make clear a product’s recent popularity, like showing however many people bought an item in the last month. For repeat purchases, the app will tell a user if they are searching for something they already bought.

Image credits: Amazon