Google will show Image Licensing Information in Google search results. Start utilizing image license metadata to highlight your image license information.

Google launched a new structured data element for sites to display licensing information about content that appears in Google images. So that, content creators and distributors can highlight the licensing information for pictures on their site and it will be reflected on Google Images.

“When you specify license information for the images on your website, the image can display with a Licensable badge on image thumbnails in Google Images.” – Google

Image License Metadata

Google is beta testing a new feature to curb accidental image theft on its platform by highlighting copyright and ownership.  The changes show the “licensable” label in the search result. After clicking on the image to expand it, Google will show where the image was licensed. 

To discover and index your images:

  • Make sure people can access and view your pages that contain images without needing an account or logging in.
  • Make sure Google bot can access your pages that contain images (meaning, your pages aren't disallowed by a robots.txt file or robots meta tag)
  • Follow the webmaster guidelines to make sure Google can discover your content.
  • Follow the Google image best practices
  • To keep Google informed of changes submit sitemap, You also can automate this

How to add Image License Metadata

Google offers two ways to add metadata to your image. Site owners can add the required metadata by any of the following methods for adding the Licensable badge.

1. Structured Data: Structured data is an association between the image and the page where it appears with the mark up. You need to add structured data for every instance an image is used, even if it's the same image.

2. IPTC Photo Metadata: IPTC photo metadata is embedded into the image itself, and the image and metadata can move from page to page while still staying intact. You only need to embed IPTC photo metadata once per image.

Here is the screenshot of a search result that shows licensable label.

Image License Metadata


Image License Metadata

1. A URL to a page that describes the license governing an image’s use.

2. A URL to a page that describes where the user can find information on how to license that image.

Is Image License Metadata impact search ranking?

As per Google’s John Mueller (trend analyst), use of image license metadata has no impact on search rankings and is strictly optional. Additionally, this tag can help communicate the licensing details to potential customers, reduce accidental image theft and increase revenues for your images. Start providing metadata ahead to ensure the images are eligible to display licensing information even the feature isn’t available in Google images yet.

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Image License Metadata

About Guna Nadar

Guna Nadar

Brief Info about Guna Nadar +

I mostly write technical aspects and not much into creative writing. For the past decade I worked along with top notch SEO & Internet Marketing professionals which naturally lured me into the world of Search Engines. When I am not writing I read from comics to philosophy.Antiques, Fishing, hunting are my passions. Currently I am working on Google Penalty protection and .... more info