Google's new image search function points to an emerging trend - images are becoming a bigger deal in SEO.

It’s been a big week for Google. The search engine company unleashed Penguin 2.0 and introduced new social media and search technologies at its I/O Conference. While fighting web spam and making online content discovery even more seamless, Google also introduced a new search function that organizes Google+ users’ photos more effectively.

This release doesn’t have direct implications for marketers’ custom content strategies yet, but brands should still pay attention. It hints at potential new search changes that could place additional value on infographic content and other visual media down the road.

Google’s new [my photos] search function will comprehensively sort and serve Google+ users’ uploaded images based on their queries, essentially eliminating the need for tagging. Machine learning technology will recognize elements of photos that organize images into definable categories like food, flowers or specific locations, such as Miami or Tokyo.

Google image search function uses machine learning to deliver better results.

Brafton covered previous image-search updates from Google and Bing. The former now delivers high-resolution pictures in users’ search queries, while the latter integrates images with Pinterest – a move that makes it easier for searchers to share branded content on the social network.

Google understands that users’ search expectations are rising, and it intends to refine its technology to deliver optimal experiences when possible. It would be wise for brands to pay attention to trends, so they can preemptively develop content that wins top spots in search. Perhaps Google is one step closer to image recognition software and ranking websites by the credibility their images offer users.

Lauren Kaye is a Marketing Editor at Brafton Inc. She studied creative and technical writing at Virginia Tech before pursuing the digital frontier and finding content marketing was the best place to put her passions to work. Lauren also writes creative short fiction, hikes in New England and appreciates a good book recommendation.