How many times have you tried searching online for the perfect dress for an upcoming party, a step-by-step guide on how to look after a new garden plant or a tutorial on how to recreate a specific dish you ate on holiday – but just couldn’t find the words to articulate exactly what you’re looking for?

Well, searching for what you need is about to become a whole lot easier. Earlier in April, Google officially released multisearch, which is now available in beta form for English-language searches on either the Android or iOS version of the Google app.

What is Google Multisearch?

In short, multisearch is by name multifunctional. It allows you to search using pictures and text, which makes searching for specific items much more efficient.

Powered by Google Lens, you can use your phone camera and pictures to search by image. To enhance your search, you can also add additional text. Google will use both the text and image and provide you with visual search results that relate to your query.

For instance, if you see someone wearing a red dress you like, or a picture of it online, but aren't sure where it's from, you can use Google multisearch to find it, or dresses very similar to it.

Why has Google introduced this multifunctional search engine? Google Product Manager Belinda Zeng, says:

At Google, we’re always dreaming up new ways to help you uncover the information you’re looking for — no matter how tricky it might be to express what you need. That’s why today, we’re introducing an entirely new way to search: using text and images at the same time. With multisearch in Lens, you can go beyond the search box and ask questions about what you see.”

How to Use Google Multisearch

If you have an Android or iOS phone, then you can try this feature out now. Here’s an easy step-by-step guide on how to get started with multisearch in the Google app.

1. Download and open the Google app, then tap the “Google Lens” button. From there, you can start your search by uploading an existing screenshot from your camera roll, or you can take a fresh picture.

2. The Google app will then list search results. Next, swipe up and tap the "+ Add to your search” button, this will allow you to type in any extra text for your search query.

Ways to Use Google Multisearch

Google multisearch can help you fine-tune your search queries. Below are just a few ways you could use multisearch in the future.

  • Screenshot a blue shirt you like and add the query “grey” to find it in another colour
  • Take a photo of your chest of drawers and add the query “wardrobe” to find a matching set
  • Take a picture of a particular dish you like and add the query “recipe” to get the full instructions.

From the examples we’ve provided, it should come as no surprise that Google is primarily marketing multisearch as an eCommerce tool for the time being.

However, Google is hoping that multisearch will be a welcome addition to its search engine, and will help users discover more of the information they need by using words and pictures.

Google multisearch has been made possible thanks to Google’s latest advancements in AI, which makes it easier for the search engine to provide the accurate answers users now want and expect.

At the moment, MUM is not yet in multisearch. However, Google is looking at ways they can feature its latest AI model in search to improve the quality and accuracy of its results.

Final Thoughts

This is the latest innovation from Google that is going to change the way people search online. Thanks to its AI capabilities, users will be able to obtain refined search results based on more than just text.

As it’s still in beta we’re waiting to see how businesses will start utilising the power of multisearch. However, we can see this becoming the new norm for Google search on mobile. So, watch this space.