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How To Use Google Trends To Your Advantage

Written by Andy McGowan: Digital marketing executive.
· 4 minute read

Google currently offers a wide range of tools that can be used to benefit your business’s marketing strategy. These include page speed insights, URL builders, think with Google, mobile site testing, the consumer barometer, the keyword planner – the list goes on!

For SEO (and other marketing channels), Google Trends is definitely one of the most valuable and provides your business with a wealth of industry-relevant and consumer data. And better yet – it’s completely free! Here’s some tips on how to make the most of this great tool.

Understanding The ‘Interest Over Time’ Metric (Trends Vs Planner)

The most basic and common use of Google Trends is to search for a keyword and find out how much interest there is or has been over a set period of time (you can view up to almost 14 years of data!). The graph below shows IOT for the search term ‘Ladies Running Trainers’ over the past year.

google-trends

One thing many users don’t realise that the ‘interest over time’ metric isn’t in reference to the exact number of searches a particular keyword has but actually refers to how popular the overall topic is based on a number of similar keyword variations. Search marketers generally use the Google Keyword Planner to find out exact search volumes. So in this case, what use is Google trends if we have the keyword planner?

Knowing how popular the market is for your desired industry/topic can only bode well for your marketing efforts. For example, a common use of this data is to track notable spikes or drops throughout the year – if ‘Ladies Running Shoes’ has been a heavily searched topic every September/October for the past 4 years, it may be worth increasing your advertising budgets, social media frequency and overall marketing efforts around this time to try and capitalise on the available search market – and vice versa.

You can also view the IOT for image searches, news searches, shopping searches and YouTube searches – use these metrics in accordance with your current marketing strategy.

Develop Your Content Based Around Popular Topics

Consider generating content based around hot topics as reported by Trends. A good way of finding out hot topics is to:

1. Search for the most general keyword that describes your business e.g. Men’s Sunglasses

2. Scroll down and have a look at ‘Related Topics’ and ‘Related Queries’ – pictured below.

 

google-trends

From here, scroll through the related topics and queries and see if you can find something that is relevant to your business and may be worth writing a blog about. Writing an engaging blog on a hot topic can be a quick way of generating some relevant traffic that could potentially convert on your site if they like what they see!

In this case, I would consider creating a blog based around different types of Tints/Shades and ensure to include the date ‘2018’ throughout the blog to try and gain search from the ‘mens sunglasses 2018’ search terms.

Another good way of capitalising on hot topics is to create a blog based around something more topical that may not be directly relevant to your business (I appreciate this may not be possible for every industry but it’s always worth trying something new).

For example, at this moment in time, ‘World Cup’ related search terms have the highest amount of popularity in the UK – you could generate a blog that is not only relevant to your business but has some kind of World Cup/Football theme throughout it. You never know – it might just be a hit!

Don’t Ignore The Location Data!

Your business most likely only operates within certain areas of the country which is fair enough. This doesn’t mean you should ignore search data within the areas that you don’t work within.

For example, your business installs solar panels predominantly for residents in the south of England. The search data below shows that there is also interest in the north of England most notably in Sheffield and Liverpool.

 

google-trends

To test to see if you could potentially be gaining more business from this location, it may be worth creating a social or Adwords advertising strategy that targets these areas to see if there’s any impact. You could be missing out on potential new customers!