Effectively using Google color search
Welcome to a multi part series on using Google for power searching. And, yes, before you wag that finger at us, we are indeed going through the Power Searching with Google “class”. In fact, it wouldn’t hurt if you watched a few of the videos yourself. You might find searching easier and more powerful than you imagined.
Using color search when searching Google images is a nice way to narrow down a search by both color and by context (in this case context being other colors in the image, ie. backgrounds). Why use it? You might find that you increase your search power because you are now including images/content that you might not normally find when searching old school, as it were. You are searching for something “that is only available to the eye.” You’d be surprised how much more you can find when using an image query over a word based query. By using image search combined with color search, you are able to drill down your search and produce better results more quickly.
How to use Google color Search
Make an image query. In this case, we’re choosing Garden Zone 5 because that is what is on my mind this time of year. Search results produce images that run the gamut from USDA hardiness zones to a vegetable planting calendar to images of flowers and plants.
Now, simply scroll down and look on the left hand side of your screen where you see color options (the color grid). I’d like more red in my garden but I need to know what will grow well in Spokane which is a Zone 5 growing area. Click the red color tile in the color grid. Bam! All the pretty red flowers you could ask for.
The beauty of Google color search is that you can use information beyond the color or colors of the main object. What if I want to find flowers that will stand out in a nighttime garden? This time select the black color tile. You’ll notice many of the images included in your results have black backgrounds which gives you a feel as to what they might look like in a moonlit zone 5 garden.
I could go on about gardening in Zone 5 and searching for garden plans, orange or pink flowers, etc. But the point here, is the power of using Google color search not planting my garden.
Google uses a query for Tesla to illustrate search results when queries have more than one idea associated with the search term. In this case, if you search by purple, you get Tesla coils versus searching red and coming up with images of red sports cars. Two totally different results all from the same search term. Notice how quickly though you can narrow down your search results using image versus word queries?
Lastly, take it one step further, hover over an image and you’ll see the option for “similar” and “more sizes”. Click similar, and well, you’re Google search will result in a host of similar red flowers (still using my example).
I found a post on a hardwood flooring blog on using Google color search to seek out various styles of hardwood flooring to begin the process of choosing the right flooring for one’s style tastes. Nice.
Can you think of instances where you might use Google color search? Things like looking for a book by color of the cover, when one cannot recall the title?