Search for Images with Google Images

Google Images allows users to search for images, instead of content. On February 15, 2018, Google announced that the Google View image button would be removed from image search result options. This button provided a quick way to view and download images freely.

Google Images search result without the view image button

The feedback from the public has been mixed with negative and positive reactions.

On one hand, it is now harder to download images without the quick option of the view image button. Essentially, the view image button option was viewed as a way to steal an image and use it as a personal photo. Photographers and stock photo services did not like this button for this reason.

On the other hand, people who want to download images have to find other ways to do what the button used to do. This is where the negative reaction comes in.

Keep in mind, with this change, Google is intentionally trying to make it harder for anyone to steal photos and protect photographers and anyone who has uploaded original photos or artwork onto the web. This change was meant to be positive and be respectful to all the original image contributors out there.


Even though Google removed the View image button, there is still a way to view and download images. This other way is just as easy as the quick access button option was.

Follow these simple instructions below.


How to View a Google Image

Steps to view an image without the view image button:


1. Start at Google Images:

Google Images search url

2. Enter a search for image you want to see. (e.g. Google, Digital Marketing, Kim Wolfe, etc.)

Google Images search for digital marketing

3. Find an image of interest from the search results

Image search results for digital marketing in Google

4. Click on the image to enlarge it

Digital Marketing image search result in Google

5. Hover the mouse pointer over the image

Hover over image to download from Google

6. Press Control + Click or right click on a mouse to display image options

Click image for options

7. Choose “Open Image in New Tab”

Control Click to open image in new tab
The image will open up in new tab in the web browser. The image URL will be displayed. This is how to view the actual image file.

Digital Marketing image viewed in new tab


How to Download a Google Image

Steps to download an image without the view image button:

1. Hover the mouse pointer over the selected image

Hover over image to download from Google

2. Press Control + Click or right click on mouse to display image options

Click image for options

3. Choose “Save Image As”

Save image as option

4. Name the file and choose where to save on computer

Save image to computer

The image will be saved and downloaded to computer.


How to Check Image Usage Rights

Downloaded images that are copyright protected can come with serious fines. Many companies charge for stock photos. Before using any photo, always check for copyright protection and distribution rights.

Check image distribution rights by:

  1. Review the copyright information underneath the image
  2. Clicking the Visit button to go to the website where the image lives and review any copyright information that may exist for photo

Visit website to check for image copyright information


How to Give Image Attribution

If you decide to use the photo in your website or blog, the best way to handle this is to add an attribution link. An attribution link is where you attribute the source of the image. It usually goes underneath the image or photo and looks like this:

Image Source:

The link contains the URL to the website page that contains the image. When someone clicks on the link, they are taken to the web page where the image lives.

I give attributions for images that I use, after I check if there are any copyright or sharing restrictions. Because I don’t want to be viewed as an image stealer.

Giving attribution links certainly does not protect from all copyright policies, but does help to state who may own the image. Remember to be mindful and respectful when using other people’s images. You’d likely want people to show your original images and photos the same respect.


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