I always thought it would be interesting to know what’s trending right now on the Internet. Heck, I’ve always wanted to know if a certain term gained popularity over the past year… or 10, but I simply didn’t have the tool to figure this out.
Many might assume that Google Trends is made only for marketers, such as copywriters, or those who manage social media, but that’s not true. It’s useful for anyone who needs a visual comparison of traffic levels between search terms. And that’s the beauty with Google Trends; it’s literally for everyone! Truth is, once you understand what it really does, you’re going to want to use it all the time. I’ve actually been using Google Trends for my content ever since I came across it.
So, Why Is Google Trends a Must-Have?
The average person conducts between three and four searches each day. Personally, I use Google more than 30 times a day, that’s for sure. If you’re a content creator, you probably understand the struggle of always being up-to-date with everything that’s trending, or the worry of boring your readers or followers. So, since there are approximately 5.6 billion searches per day, according to Meg Prater, it’s important for you to have at least a glimpse of what’s going on behind Google’s doors.
Google Trends is a free, trend-identifying tool that demonstrates the popularity of a search word on Google. With its help, you’ll see if this trend is rising or falling. You can also find lots of valuable information such as related topics, demographic insights, and related queries to help you better understand Google’s trends.
As shown below in the “copywriting” example, the only downside to Google Trends is that it doesn’t show the amount of traffic in actual numbers.
However, there’s a solution to this setback.
Paid keyword (SEO) tools can help you find the actual numbers you’d be looking for, and when it’s used alongside Google Trends, you can get an almost accurate idea of true keyword search volume. Although Google Trends won’t show you the exact numbers, as long as you know the amounts for one keyword, the traffic levels of the other keyword will become more understandable. Now, the only reason you’d want to know the exact traffic in actual numbers is if you’re doing super precise research, which wouldn’t be the case if you’re only searching for the hottest online topics, or what could drive your content generation. Basically, you’ll mostly be needing Google Trends in order to give you ideas on what articles would most likely attract readers at a specific period of time or area.
How To Use Google Trends for SEO
Are you using Google Trends to gain a competitive edge? If not, then you really need to.
Google Trends is one of the most underutilised and powerful tools for SEO. You can conduct free keyword research by entering a specific search term in the search box on the homepage. I never even knew that companies who use data are six times more likely to be profitable each year! Talk about learning something new everyday! So, the data that’s collected from research provides you with the essential information about your competitors, existing products, and what’s trending the most at the moment. This information helps you plan out your next steps, while also keeping an eye on the movements of the other businesses around you.
Looking at the difference in a word’s popularity over the past few years can help you distinguish between fads and true trends. Fads being the aggressively gelled, spiky hair or the bedazzled cell phones… Geez! Don’t remind me.
Now, once you search for a keyword, Google Trends will show you a graph of the search term. You can then change the timeframe by expanding the date range according to the periods you would like to go over. Like this.
One way to get insights on trends that are rapidly changing is by viewing keyword trends in the 30 or 90 day view, which is technically called the “short view”. When you scale down to the short view, you get to see which days of the week those search terms are most popular on. According to the results, you get to plan when to publish certain topics or articles so that the content will be available exactly when the audience would be searching for it.
That’s what we call organisational skills!
Start Big & Break It Down
Follow along with me to get an idea of what starting BIG looks like.
Try entering a big-time keyword that relates to your topic, and then hit Enter. From there, Google Trends will invite you to drill down in the following ways.
By using the Worldwide option, it will help you target a specific market geographically. For example, if you search for the word “Umbrella”, you’ll see that its peak is at different times of the year across different countries. You can check the range of time from “2004 – present” all the way down to the “past 4 hours”. When you break down the search term to yearly, you’ll see that in Paris, for instance, this term is searched most around November each year. However, you do remember that in 2007 Rihanna’s song was released, right? That year was the all time peak for that word!
Something else to help show you the precision of Google Trends is that while the term umbrella is trending around October and November in most countries, it’s peak in Australia in 2020 was in August. When terms are used seasonally, we refer to them as “heartbeat” patterns; such as the Caribbean cruise, pre-COVID-19, because obviously, that term has kind of flatlined for now.
Another useful tip is to filter by category, since it’s pretty much essential. You don’t want to be searching for the word “bark” and get results about dogs when you’re actually looking for something that has to do with trees. See what I mean? Also, to add more context, you can use the “+ Compare” tool to add new keywords.
So, with the trillion global searches per year, the key takeaway here is to start big, and then filter your way down to get the most relevant information. JAYPAY is the right team to go to for help, we can be your hero.
Trend Predictions and Keywords
If you logged onto Google Trends while reading this journal, you’re probably wondering why you can’t generally search for a specific keyword and just be done.
Well, you can.
But, what’s the problem with that?
It’s that every other marketer is using the exact same data. In order to always be updated on the latest trends before everyone else, you need to keep a finger on the pulse of both local and seasonal trends at all times. With the help of Google Trends, you can find relevant topics that are trending at the moment. You can then create content about them before no one else does!
Something you need to keep in mind is that when you’re searching for specific keywords, there are so many other keywords that have the exact same meaning; which are their synonyms. “Statistics” is something someone else might use instead of “data” or “research”. Thanks to Google Trends, you can align your content with the most relevant terms used by searchers. Basically, you might find that some countries refer to just one specific term, while others prefer another search term. Google Trends has been helping me to not only see seasonal trends, but also the different vocabulary that’s used across the countries I’m interested in.
The Final Word
Google Trends is a great way to get a peek behind the scenes at the constantly changing interests of people around the world. At JAYPAY, we use Google Trends to its fullest potential; it’s genuinely one of the best and the most effective tools to work with. Other than Google Trends, I honestly haven’t found any other tool that has given me the freshest data on what’s trending in search right now.
Oh, and did we mention that it’s super fun to work on Google Trends?
Just always be cautious with over analysing trends since that might lead to you casting way too wide of a topic net. You’re just going to confuse yourself and get lost. It’s the simplicity of Google Trends that makes it a great tool to add to your workflow when you’re in need to understand the positions of keywords and topics in the world.
In short: break it down, categorise, focus and own it. There’s no doubt that this free-to-use tool is a staple in our toolstack! Whoever you’re looking to target and whatever the topic is about, we’re here for you