2021 : A Year In Search

2021 will probably not go down as a great vintage. What does Google search data tell us about the state of the world this year?

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It is that time of year again.

Google has released its ‘Year In Search’ report, which is an annual snapshot of what people searched for on the search engine. I have always said that search engines, and keyword search data, offer an incredible insight into what people are really interested in and that they should be considered as a global focus group. Is there a better barometer of the current zeitgeist?

I always enjoy these reports and they have grown into fairly impressive presentations over the years. Without further ado, here is the 2021 video in all its (depressing?) glory:

Google — Year In Search 2021

Is it just me, or did that also make you feel fairly sad?

I guess it is inevitable that the pandemic is going to shape the year and that there are a lot of negatives that will find their way into an annual review, but the hope of a recovery feels a bit lost in this summary of a miserable year. Fingers crossed that we are actually on the cusp of a recovery and that hope will return…

If you prefer a more interactive experience, head over to https://about.google/intl/ALL_uk/stories/year-in-search-2021/, where you can doomscroll (see January!) your way through the year, although November and December’s top trends have yet to make their appearance.

I certainly hope that 2022 will be a brighter year for us all. I will toast to next year’s report being full of happy phrases, reflecting a return to joyful human interaction. I know that I have missed that. In the meantime, I wish you an extremely happy Christmas festive period.

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