Google Trends - The Universally Helpful Tool
Do you know what your audience is doing? Spotting attention, knowing where people are focused, being in touch with current trends is important and yet so easily overlooked and misinterpreted. Without some general knowledge of where interest falls, we are flying blind and simply hoping for the best. Most online businesses use the traffic stats of their own website to gain insight into what people want and where they lose interest, but in the best case of a large company this is working within the bubble of a small data set, and when launching a new company or product this simply isn’t an option.
Google Trends (trends.google.com) is a fantastically useful tool to help determine interest, analyze interest over time (trends), and compare phrases and keywords against each other. It almost seems too good to be true, and yet this tool remains one of the lesser known tools online. If you’re not using it, now is the time to start.
Compare synonyms for crafting effective article titles and product names. Compare problem vs. solution keyphrases. (e.g. “My computer is broken” vs. “How to fix my computer”) and think in as many different angles as possible to see how people search for things.
Note interest over time and see where the trends are heading. It’s not a crystal ball for telling the future, but it’s helpful to see the patterns over a year or more.
Follow up with your own searches in Google to see what is in the market. Popular typically means more competition along with more search traffic.
In short: Bookmark Google Trends and occasionally check back to keep an eye on what is trending and where people are focused.