September search term biggest movers are here!

What terms drove the greatest query volume spike? Let’s take a look at some of the fastest growing terms since this time last year to get a better idea of the trend in consumer search interest.

Fastest Growing Search Terms July 2009


  • Continuing the trend that we’ve seen in the past few months, queries for social networking sites Facebook and Twitter continue to grow. This month, they are joined of by the social networking / dating site Plenty of Fish (pof).
  • In the entertainment category, both Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner from the Twilight movie series have become more popular search terms.  Perez Hilton, Mila Kunis and Taylor Swift have all more than tripled their query volume.
  • Online Media continues to grow in popularity with terms such as Justin TV, Hulu and free movies online leading the way.
  • Following his outburst at the 2009 MTV VMAs, queries for Kanye West’s search queries rose almost 1000% from last year.
  • Michael Jackson is still on many minds but has lost half of the 2 million queries seen in August "˜09.



Fastest Declining Search Terms July 2009


  • Google Chrome is not as popular as it was during its September 2008 launch.
  • As we saw last month, last year’s presidential candidates Barack Obama, and Sarah Palin have both dropped significantly in search queries.  They have been joined by Real Clear Politics – a website that (among other things) breaks down the political standings of politicians & Saturday Night Live — which attracted much attention late last year with Tina Fey’s Sarah Palin impressions.
  • No longer in the news, financial moguls Merrill Lynch, Washington Mutual and AIG are not nearly as popular as they were last September.
  • Layout/graphic based terms (hotfreelayouts, layouts, myhotcomments) have decreased to about a quarter of their former volume.
  • Without the severity of last year’s tropical storms, there is less interest in terms such as: national hurricane center, fema and weather radar.

As mentioned last month, social networks are becoming more and more popular; however, as Plenty of Fish demonstrates, this is steadily beginning to include dating websites.

Queries for Glenn Beck have seen a 550% spike in queries since last year.  Most of this interest can probably be attributed to his mid-September 2009 show when he called President Obama a “racist” who has a “deep-seated hatred of white people.”  As a result, more than 60 advertisers have reportedly dropped their ads from his Fox News program.

ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) – is a collection of community-based organizations in the United States that advocate for low- and moderate-income families. It has recently come under fire from conservative commentators (such as the above mentioned Glenn Beck) for numerous reasons including claims of voter fraud during the in the 2008 presidential election.

Many of the declining terms seen this month are due to large spikes of interest in the financial industry in September 2008. Multiple financial institutions were in the news due to their decline.  On September 14, 2008, in order to avert a deepening financial crisis Merrill Lynch agreed to a buyout by Bank of America. On September 25, 2008, the United States Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) seized Washington Mutual Bank from Washington Mutual, Inc, placing it in the hands of the FDIC. AIG, on the other hand, suffered from a liquidity crisis when its credit ratings were downgraded below “AA” levels.

What other dating sites will join in the popularity of Plenty of Fish and round out the social networks category? What topics of interest will be most prevalent going deeper into Fall and the upcoming holidays? Check back in next month for more insights.

Categories: Search

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