- 2016 Author(s). We perform near-wall velocity measurements of a SiO2-water nanofluid inside a microchannel. Nanoparticle image velocimetry measurements at three visible depths within 500 nm of the wall are conducted. We evaluate the optical properties of the nanofluid and their effect on the measurement technique. The results indicate that the small effect of the nanoparticles on the optical properties of the suspension have a negligible effect on the measurement technique. Our measurements show an increase in nanofluid velocity gradients near the walls, with no measurable slip, relative to the equivalent basefluid flow. We conjecture that particle migration induced by shear may have caused this increase. The effect of this increase in the measured near wall velocity gradient has implications on the viscosity measurement for these fluids.