The following compendium reviews the development and establishment of optical spectroscopy as an analytical method for battery material components and electrochemical reactions. The interaction of light with matter is a sensitive and non-destructive way to characterize any sample state, i.e. solids, liquids or gases. Special attention is devoted to infrared and ultraviolet spectroscopy, covering a wavelength range from 12 μm to 200 nm, as well as Raman scattering spectroscopy, in order to excite different vibrational/rotational lattice modes and transitions of valence electrons. This allows an insight into structural properties, chemical composition, oxidation states or kinetic processes. The development of spectroelectrochemical in situ cells allows the investigation of various battery components, e.g. working and counter electrode, separator, electrolyte as well as interfaces between these components. These powerful tools allow the evaluation of the functionality, stability and safety aspects of an electrochemical storage cell.