With Billions of searches and questions each year, Google search provides unique insights into what people care about and 2017 was no different. In 2017 people turned to Google Search to discover the secrets of slime and locate solar eclipse glasses, as well as to learn how to help the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire.
In the middle of all these new searches, consumers showed new behaviours. In 2017 people were more curious, more demanding and even more impatient than before. It’s important for us and anyone with marketing responsibilities to understand these new behaviours as we now enter 2018.
More and more curious
People turn to Google to satisfy their curiosity. In 2017 the questions people have asked provide a interesting snapshot of the cultural events that defined the year. You can see on Google Trends what people have been searching for.
How they’re searching has changed too. When people search they are being far more specific and yet they are still expecting to get relevant and useful results. For example, people didn’t just search “how to make slime.” They searched “how to make fluffy slime,” “how to make butter slime,” and “how to make slime without Borax.”
For marketers this offers a great opportunity, when writing copy, creating content and considering keywords, don’t be afraid to be specific – rather embrace it.
Right here, right now
People are using Search and are expecting find exactly what they are looking for, whenever and wherever there’re looking for it. We saw that play out with the continued prevalence of “near me” searches. Across the country, people used Google Search to find shops, restaurants and events near them.
An interesting twist that marketers need to keep an eye on: Some people have grown to expect so much from search that they’re even dropping the phrase “near me,” but still expecting local results. Evidence shows that on mobile, people are accepting that Google knows where they are – so expect intelligent and relevant results based on their location.
Impatient to help
Searches have become more detailed and more relevant to an individual’s specific daily experience. But search is also a powerful unifier.
This year had more than its fair share of disasters. But people were not content to simply follow the news coverage. They were itching to take action, turning to Google Search in the moment to quickly find ways to help.
In June, the Grenfell Tower Fire saw a surge in searches, not just for updates or news, but how to get involved, donate or support the victims and their families. Search is becoming the conduit for aid in the event of a national disaster.
As we head into 2018, we expect this super-empowered consumer to continue to evolve. Expectations will only continue to rise. People will ask more detailed questions and want more personally relevant answers, and they’ll want it all faster than ever before. It’s a puzzle – and a challenging one at that – but marketers have an abundance of information that will help solve it. Marketers can then unlock new opportunities and ensure they’re well-positioned to serve this new super-empowered consumer.