I have been using Google Trends for some time now – for work and sometimes just for fun! Trust me it can be fun and educational. You can tell a lot about what is going on in people’s minds and you can even break it down by geographies.

Consider the word ‘terrorism’ for instance. Trends shows that steadily people’s preoccupation with it seems to have declined over the years. Search volume is much higher in India than in the USA. The volume has steadily declined over the last couple of years in the US but not in India. Washington DC and New Delhi are the leading cities in terms of search traffic. But in the last 30 days Delhi and Mumbai generated more search traffic than Washington. Makes sense!

And now Google has launched Insights for Search, which takes this to a whole new level. You get a world map of interest and you can drill down to city level too. You can get related terms searched for, for instance war on terrorism, terrorism act.

Consider the word ‘hybrid’ for instance. Over the years interest ebbs and flows, but has recently gone up substantially, what with oil prices as they are. And while USA leads here, India doesn’t figure in the top ten. The word ‘hybrid’ is being searched for mostly in the context of a car and not seeds for instance. Honda and Toyota appear to be associated with the word ‘hybrid’ more than other car brands.

You can truly get some insights. Which you can use for social sciences or for marketing projects.
Google Trends
Insights for Search

First published on August 6, 2008