These days, you can find just about anything online – and that includes an impressive selection of video content. We’ve all spent our fair share of time watching the latest viral videos, whether that means scrolling social media, browsing popular video-sharing sites, or even just clicking through the day’s headlines.
But what do you do when you find a great video clip online but you aren’t sure how to find the source?
The solution is a reverse video search, and it’s easier – and a lot more valuable – than many people realize. There are a few different ways to do a reverse video search, the most popular of which is to use Google.
What is a Reverse Video Search?
In most cases, using a search engine involves entering a specific word or phrase in the search box. For example, if you’re looking for information to help you improve your digital marketing strategy, you might search for “tips for online marketing for small businesses.”
A reverse search flips the usual formula. So, you start with a specific item, then use the search engine to reverse-engineer a selection of web pages that the item appears on.
Reverse video searching applies that concept to video, using its unique pixels and colors to locate other copies of it from various sources online. It’s not a perfect system because your results can sometimes include videos that look similar but aren’t quite the same. But on the whole, it’s a helpful tool for determining how many times a video appears online and even its original source.
Why You Might Want to Do a Reverse Video Search
There are a few reasons for someone to utilize a reverse video finder. Some of these reasons are tied to business and marketing, while others are based on pure curiosity alone.
You might need to do a reverse video search in order to:
Find websites or creators that are illegitimately using your original video content
If you’re the creator of a video, you can use a reverse video search to pinpoint every time that video appears on a site. If you locate your video on sites that have not asked for permission to use your content, you can then take the proper steps to request its removal (or ask that you be credited).
Locate the full version of a specific video
There are limits on the file sizes that can be displayed on certain file-sharing sites. So, if you come across a video clip (or a video with low quality), and you want to find the full version, a reverse video search can do the trick.
Pinpoint the video’s source and creator
If you’ve come across a video clip that you’d like to incorporate in your own content, properly crediting the original owner and/or producer is essential. Reverse video searching can point you in the right direction, guiding you towards the video’s copyright owner. From there, you can contact the owner or creator to discuss if and how you can utilize their video for your own purposes.
Explore related video content
Another productive use of reverse video search is discovering additional, relevant content. For example, let’s say you watch an engaging video and are interested in seeing other similar videos. A reverse search can connect you to related content so that you can browse to your heart’s content.
How to Do a Reverse Video Search on Google
If you want to conduct a reverse video search, Google is a user-friendly and easily accessible option. Learning how to use Google for a reverse video search is something just about anyone can do, without any need to be particularly tech-savvy.
- First, take a screenshot of the video. You’ll be using a screenshotted image of the video as the starting material for the reverse video finder. A screenshot is a split-second still capture. Make sure you choose a distinct frame (part) of the video to screenshot, to improve the quality and accuracy of your video search results. Usually, it makes the most sense to save your screenshot to the desktop, so you don’t have to hunt it down later.
- How to take a screenshot on a Mac (Apple):
- Press Shift + Command + 4
- Press and hold down on the trackpad or mouse button.
- Drag over the area (the video player) you want to capture in the screenshot.
- Once you’ve selected the entire area, release the button.
- How to take a screenshot on Windows:
- Press Ctrl + PrtScn
- Use the Snipping tool (selecting rectangle mode) to capture a screenshot of the video.
- How to take a screenshot on a Mac (Apple):
- Then, go to the Google Image search page. Click on the camera icon in the search bar, so you can search using an image. Upload your screenshot, then submit the search query.
- Use the reverse video search results. Your SERP (search engine results page) will include all of Google’s results and also include any image data it’s able to detect.
You can also use the Google mobile app on your smartphone to do a reverse video search. The basic process is the same: take a screenshot and then conduct a Google Image search (clicking the camera icon once again).
Put Video Content to Work for Your Business
Reverse video search tools are great to have on hand, but you might be wondering: do you really need to figure out how to use video for marketing?
Here at V Digital Services, where we’ve been in the business of effective marketing for years, we can confidently say that the answer is yes – understanding video marketing is a must for all types and sizes of businesses. In 2022, the average online user will spend an estimated 100 minutes watching videos each day. Video accounts for more than 80% of online traffic (Cisco), and placing a video on a landing page can boost your conversion rate by upwards of 80% (WordStream). It’s pretty impossible to argue with numbers like those.
Whether you’re already creating video marketing content or you’re just now adding it to your to-do list, the V Digital Services team can help you take a smart, results-driven approach. Together, we’ll harness the power of video to achieve your goals and propel your business towards marketing success.
Learn more about how to use reverse video search to guide your own content creation when you reach out to V Digital Services today!