Digital insights, advice and ramblings from our team of experts.

Top Search Terms For 2016 On Google

top google searches in 2016

‘Tis the season for end of the year lists.  We’ve now seen the list of the top terms searched in Ireland for 2016 (so far).  “Euro 2016” was the top term people in Ireland used Google to search, followed by “Pokemon Go”.  The top ten Google searches in Ireland included other sports events including “Olympics” and “Ireland versus New Zealand”.  We also used Google to search about celebrities who passed away including David Bowie, Prince, Alan Rickman and Anthony Foley.  We used Google to search for information about politics.  The top ten search terms for the year included “Donald Trump”, “Brexit” and “US election”.

This doesn’t reveal anything shocking, but it confirms that as a nation, we like to follow sports and cheer for our teams.  We’re concerns about politics in the UK and US as well as our own.  This insight can guide our decisions about web content only in general terms.  Simply throwing trending search terms into our blogs might draw in some readers, but they are likely to be annoyed if the content doesn’t tell them something interesting or useful about the search term.  And posting about popular topics without tying it into your own brand is not likely to result in any solid sales leads.

Top Two Search Terms to Use in 2017

But Google’s end of the year analysis does throw up two search terms that do matter and should strongly influence content in 2017.  Two of the most popular terms were “what is” and “how to”.  This is a loud and clear reminder that people are searching for answers to questions and problems they have.  It underscores the timeless advertising rule – talk about benefits, not features.

What is a powerful content strategy?  It is one that shows web visitors how to get the most out of your product or service.  Do they understand what is the most important benefit of your product?  Do they know how to use it to solve their problem?  (See what we did there?)

When you are planning your content for your site, your blog and your social media posts, remember that people want solutions.  They are going to make a purchase to solve a problem they have.  Think carefully about what problems your product solves, and explain how it does so in your content.  Think about the nuances of the problem.  “I need to find a restaurant” is very broad.  “I need to find an inexpensive restaurant near me right now” is quite different from “I need to find a romantic restaurant with vegetarian fare for a date Saturday night”.   What might these searchers type into the search engine?  What is the closest restaurant?  What is the cheapest restaurant in Galway?  What is the most romantic restaurant in Cork?  What is the best vegetarian restaurant in Athlone?  Craft your content accordingly!

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