Google indicates that the image search references will not receive a new source URL (but forget to tell us)

About 10 months ago, Google asked publishers, Site owners and tool providers prepare for a change in how search images in Google send their referral URLs. Instead of Google Image search traffic from, they wanted to change it to help webmasters understand their image search traffic. So they said that in the coming months, the referral URL would be changed to, which would allow your analytics to better track it.

This will not happen anymore. does not change the search image reference URL. Google recently released an update stating that users would not get this data in the Google Search Console instead.

"UPDATE: After extensive testing and analysis, we determined that the place to measure the query and click on Google Images traffic is in the performance report of the search console. As a result, we will continue to use (or the appropriate ccTLD) as the originating URL for all traffic from Google Images. We will not provide a specific reference URL for Google Images ( ", Said the company.

How we found out. No, Google did not inform us, any more than anyone, of this change, they simply updated the story simply and discreetly and did not send updates anywhere else about it. Twitter, no mention of this on their blog.Just maybe hoped that no one will notice it.AH Kohn reported about it on Twitter:

I was still waiting for Google to deploy the referent of & # 39; 39 images in Google Analytics.But it turns out that they decided not to do it after a "closer examination." Am I the only one to have missed this update? Pic.twitter .com / aU8wkRUsxr / 19459002 Search on – AJ Kohn (@ajkohn) May 16, 2019

Why no we should be concerned about this. This means that the only way to properly view your Google Image search traffic is in the Google Search Console. It also means that there will be a delay of at least two days because the search console's performance reports are always delayed by that duration. In addition, this means that you will not receive any real-time data about it. Therefore, if you have a good image in the image search on a specific day, you will only know it later.

Do not edit the image search. The reference URL for publishers, webmasters and site owners is confusing. Maybe Google had decided not to tackle this daunting challenge. But as Google originally said, "For webmasters, it's not always easy to understand the role that Google Images plays in traffic management on the site," which will not really change, because Google Search Console had this data before.

About the Author

Barry Schwartz Is Search "I hope that Google hopes that this change will promote the creation of a ecosystem of healthy visual content. News Editor of Engine Land and owner of RustyBrick, a New York-based web consulting company. He also directs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular research blog on SEM topics.

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