Google Trends is a free service provided by Google, which basically allows you to see how often a keyword or term is searched for by analysing different search queries over time. This allows you to get an understanding of how popular various search terms have become, and how quickly they have reached that level of popularity.
You can see what has been searched for most in a geographical area over a given space of time. For example, you can see how much interest there has been in the term “world cup” across the past 7 days, across the whole world. This way, you can see where that term has been searched for the most often.
This has numerous potential benefits. If you are considering bringing a product onto a market, it may be a good idea to use Google Trends to check that people are actually looking for it. The more people looking for it, the bigger you could assume the market is. You should remember however, that not every search for a product will be someone necessarily looking to make a purchase. That being said, Google Trends can still give you an idea about market size.
Google Trends can also be used for keyword creation. Seeing what people are typing in gives you a good idea of how to tailor your pay per click campaigns to so that you pay for clicks on search terms that you know people are searching for, rather than guessing and wasting budget.
Content marketing is another area where Google Trends can be useful as it can check whether a content marketing campaign is likely to find an interested audience, but it rather limited in its scope, because it goes in to detail about one search term, rather than a bit less detail for many search terms. As a result, whilst it could be used to gain inspiration for a content marketing campaign, it’s probably more appropriate to use it to check. So, for example, suppose you sell computer parts, and want to deliver a content marketing email campaign, which focuses on a new development in computing. You can use Google Trends to check how many times that new computing development has been searched. If lots of people have searched for it then it’s a good bet that the recipients of your email will find it interesting.
But it also allows you to search for specific terms yourself. You can see how many times people have searched for it, where most people who look for it are from, and how long people have been searching for it. This last point is crucial, and if we use the example of internet memes, we see why. If you search for an internet meme, at first glance, you may be led to believe that the term is hugely popular. On closer examination, however, you will find that the meme has been popular only for a very short window. They tend to have a relative popularity of almost nothing, then a huge spike, before they die down again. When creating a content marketing campaign, beware of these spikes in popularity, and tailor your advertising strategy around terms that are consistent, rather than ones that spike and then die down.
Having said that, some terms form a pattern of low-level popularity and then a spike, which repeats over time. This can be taken advantage of because if you analyse these trends, you can see patterns emerge and create marketing campaigns to coincide with peak interest. So, for example, by tracing the history of the term “barbecue,” if you sell anything related to barbecues, you can create your campaigns more effectively. You might decide to send emails about how to maintain your outdoor cookery equipment when Google Trends indicates that the search term has a low relative popularity, and when the term has high relative popularity, you can send emails with offers, more direct attempts to get a potential customer to make a purchase.