In our continuing series of examining Google Search Trends to gain insights into the top keywords queried in the USA, we present our findings for August 2021.
Every day, we capture the top three keyword phrases in terms of search volume as reported by Google Trends (US Only). Each term has an estimated query volume attached to it, which we also record. The number scale tops out at 10,000,000+ with a lower limit of 200,000+. After the conclusion of the month, we look at the phrases we collected along with their volumes to get an understanding of what drove queries for the month.
Peculiar Search Trends For August 2021
Let’s come out with it: Looking back at what we captured from Google Trends, August 2021 was a different kind of month. First off, it was the first month since March 2020 where we didn’t have a keyword that was searched more than 10 million times in a day. Even more unusual, we had only one keyword that made the 5 million plus club!
Not that Google would tell us, but we wonder if there are some months where overall search activity is down. There’s seasonality in search but I wonder if there are some months where there aren’t huge news stories driving people to search. What we theorize happened in August: people getting outside and enjoying the last full month of summer in the second year of this pandemic. We’re not sure but we have our eyes on the trends every day and something was different this time.
Other than the lower query volumes for the daily top 3, there were interesting keywords that made our collection including an Instagram comment that caught fire and one related to a celebrity McDonald’s meal. Queries about weather events and other news stories dominated our list so they will have their own section in this post. Lastly, with a lack of big sports events in August, the number of sports-related queries were down. We’re sure that’s welcome information for our regular readers.
Weather Events And News Queries
There were a few hurricanes that made landfall in the USA last month and people searched to learn about them. Here are the weather related keywords that made our collection in chronological order:
The first named storm was Henri:
- Hurricane Henri - 8/19/2021 - 500,000+ queries
- Hurricane Henri path - 8/20/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Hurricane Henri path - 8/22/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
Clearly, there were some questions related to how Henri was tracking up the East coast of the U.S. and where landfall was going to be.
The next named storm was Ida and she drove more search interest. Queries about this storm on the 28th made it the most searched keyword for the month.
- Ida - 8/26/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Ida - 8/28/2021 - 5,000,000+ queries
Since Ida was supposed to make landfall on the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, there were enough queries for the former storm to push it into the dail top 3 on the 27th.
- Hurricane Katrina - 8/27/2021 - 200,000+ queries
Beyond the topic of weather, the big news story of the month was the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan. Here are the queries associated with that event:
- Afghanistan - 8/15/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Taliban - 8/15/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Biden Afghanistan - 8/15/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Afghanistan news - 8/26/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
Looking across all the keywords we gathered for this report, these two topics were the most searched. It’s a good reminder that sometimes search is a tool to gain knowledge about topics that have serious consequences for people and those they care about. Sometimes, there isn’t any further analysis needed.
Top August 2021 TV & Movie Keywords
Switching gears, here are the movies and TV shows that people queried the most in August 2021. First up, films based on comic book characters are still popular. Also, having the trailer of an upcoming film get leaked expands the number of days a movie gets searched for.
- Suicide Squad - 8/5/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Spider-Man: No Way Home - 8/22/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Spider-Man: No Way Home - 8/23/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
If you wanted to know if the show you were excited to watch was popular, check out Google Trends. Look - there were lots of queries about the third Kissing Booth film.
- Bachelorette finale - 8/9/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- Kissing Booth 3 - 8/11/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- White Lotus - 8/16/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- Nine Perfect Strangers - 8/18/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- Only Murders in the Building - 8/31/2021 - 200,000+ queries
Mike Richards was named the new host of the game show Jeopardy! and it spurred some interest. When that host job was taken away, that’s when people wanted to know more.
- Mike Richards - 8/4/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- Mike Richards - 8/20/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
By looking at the data Google Trends provides, you can see if the hype is real or not.
Nah, He Tweaking
Now, this type of query makes it to the top of Google Trends daily report rarely, if ever. This phrase was an Instagram comment that went viral and people wanted to know what it meant and why it was seemingly everywhere. So, they turned to Google for answers.
- Nah he tweakin - 8/25/2021 - 500,000+ queries
Originating from a Lil Nas X comment in reaction to a post about Tony Hawk’s blood infused skateboards, these three words suddenly were being used in comments all over Instagram. Someday, we’ll understand why a comment gets repeated by a large number of people but until then, it’s fun to wonder how things go viral.
The Newest Celebrity McDonalds Meal
The team here at AMP loves to see queries related to food make the daily top 3. McDonalds Celebrity meals has been a topic we have been tracking since last year and here’s the latest top query.
- Saweetie - 8/9/2021 - 200,000+ queries
Now, not all McD’s celebrity meals are as popular as others. The South Korean boy band BTS’ meal was released last May 26th and the search interest was not large enough to make its way into the daily top 3. On the other hand, the keyword “Travis Scott McDonald's” was the most searched phrase on September 8th, 2020, queried over a million times. We guess the search interest in this topic is a matter of taste.
Well, It’s Not Like Sports Went Away
Just because there were less sports-related phrases in our August 2021 collection doesn’t mean there were none. Here are the keywords that correlated to sports events last month.
There were a few games that drove search interest, some of the most queried phrases of the month - one for international soccer and one for Major League Baseball.
- Mexico vs USA - 8/1/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Field of Dreams Game - 8/11/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
Queries related to professional boxing also sparked the interest of Google users.
- Pacquiao vs Ugas - 8/20/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Jake Paul - 8/28/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Jake Paul vs Tyron Woodley - 8/28/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Jake Paul vs Tyron Woodley - 8/29/2021 - 2,000,000+ queries
The rest of the notable sports-related queries were of athlete’s names and all three of them went through some job changes.
- Messi - 8/5/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Lionel Messi - 8/8/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- Tim Tebow - 8/14/2021 - 500,000+ queries
- Tim Tebow - 8/17/2021 - 200,000+ queries
- Cam Newton - 8/30/2021 - 1,000,000+ queries
Lionel Messi announced that he was not returning to FC Barcelona on the 5th and had a press conference on the 8th. Tim Tebow played in a pre-season NFL team for the Jacksonville Jaguars on the 14th and then was cut from the team on the 17th. Lastly, Cam Newton's tenure with the New England Patriots ended on the 30th when he was released from the team. The NFL is starting its season in September so we fully expect that keywords related to the players, teams, and games will make up a large percentage of the daily top 3 as reported by Google Trends. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
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Until next month.