What Are the Best Visual Search Algorithms? - Miros

What Are the Best Visual Search Algorithms?

Woman taking a photo of sneakers

If you’re running an online shop or managing e-commerce decisions, you’ve probably heard about visual search algorithms that are reshaping how we interact with images online.

These algorithms are the backbone of seamless user experiences, from identifying products to discovering similar images. Especially now, when AI-powered product discovery tools are completely changing the way people shop online. 

Let’s explore what makes them tick and how they can benefit your e-commerce endeavors.

The Role of Visual Search Algorithms

The intricate world of convolutional neural networks (CNNs) lies at the heart of visual search algorithms. These powerful tools excel at recognizing patterns and spatial relationships within images, making them ideal for complex visual searches that are now driving the evolution of e-commerce

But before CNNs stole the spotlight, traditional techniques like SIFT, SURF, and ORB paved the way, offering reliable recognition under various conditions. When it comes to matching images, algorithms like Cosine Similarity and Euclidean Distance are among the most praised ones. They provide quick and accurate matches, making the search experience feel more intuitive. 

However, choosing the right algorithm isn’t just about speed and accuracy; it’s about understanding your dataset and finding the perfect fit for your unique needs.

Feature Extraction: The Key to Success

Feature extraction is at the core of advanced visual search algorithms. It’s the process of converting complex images into understandable numerical data, laying the foundation for accurate searches.

Traditional techniques like SIFT, SURF, and ORB broke down images into manageable components, but the rise of CNNs took feature extraction to new heights. These deep learning models revolutionized how we capture visual information, leading to unparalleled accuracy and efficiency in visual search systems.

visual search algorithms presented in an eyeball

Traditional Methods vs. CNNs: Finding the Balance

Classic algorithms like SIFT, SURF, and ORB excel at handling changes in size, orientation, and lighting conditions, ensuring consistent recognition of distinct image elements. 

On the other hand, CNNs dive deep into visual data, learning intricate cues and organizing spatial hierarchies. This versatility makes CNNs indispensable for tasks requiring precise image recognition, such as improved product discovery in online retail, security systems and quality control, to name a few.

Understanding Similarity Measures

Cosine Similarity and Euclidean Distance are essential for comparing image features in advanced visual search algorithms. Cosine Similarity gauges how similar two image vectors are, regardless of their size or scale. 

This precision ensures relevant search results, enhancing the user experience. On the other hand, Euclidean Distance measures the difference between feature vectors, efficiently pinpointing similar images in lower-dimensional spaces. 

These measures work together to deliver accurate and reliable search outcomes.

A woman holding a credit card

Exploring Popular Visual Search Algorithm Types

Content-Based Image Retrieval (CBIR) systems focus on the visual attributes of images, offering precise search outcomes tailored to user intent. Classification-based visual search leverages machine learning models like CNNs and Support Vector Machines (SVMs) to categorize images, facilitating organized retrieval. 

Object detection-based visual search goes a step further by identifying specific objects within images, enhancing search precision. Hashing-based visual search algorithms encode images into compact binary codes, speeding up search times without sacrificing accuracy.

Real-World Applications of Visual Search Algorithm

Platforms like Google Lens, Pinterest Lens, Bing Visual Search, and Miros.ai exemplify the power of visual search algorithms in real-world scenarios. These engines leverage advanced AI and machine learning technologies to interpret visual data, revolutionizing how we interact with images. 

These tools offer valuable insights and seamless user experiences, from object recognition to text translation, marking a significant leap in technology’s evolution.

Choosing the Right Algorithm for Your Needs

Selecting the ideal visual search algorithm requires a deep understanding of your dataset and specific requirements. 

Whether it’s the size of your database, the types of images you’re dealing with, the trade-offs between speed and precision, or e-commerce product discovery – careful consideration ensures optimal search performance. By integrating domain-specific considerations, you can tailor your visual search capabilities to deliver maximum value to your e-commerce platform. 

Miros.ai: A MUST for Every Online Retailer

Miros.ai is an easy-to-implement AI-powered visual search and product discovery tool that will improve your e-commerce strategy by offering three key advantages:

  1. Quick and more intuitive product discovery
  2. Streamlined e-commerce operations
  3. Increased revenue

Here’s how it works:

But there are many more benefits this solution can bring you to help beat direct competition. Book a demo with the Miros team and learn ALL the direct advantages of visual search infrastructures.

Wordless Search

What is it?

Just like the name suggests:

Search without using a single word.

Buying visually complex items like fashion, clothes, footwear, furniture, art, design pieces, decor… is a function of style and beauty, not features. So why do we keep making our shoppers buy these like they’re buying a book or a laptop?

Wordless Search is an AI technology that relies on shopper behavior. It recognizes browsing patterns based on which it mirrors the buying intent your shopper has, without them having to input a single word. It gives off the impression that their minds are being read.

Book a demo

Learn about Wordless Search

Give your shoppers the experience they were always willing to pay a premium for. Book a demo to see how.