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 2022.
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+ (sometimes 100,000+). 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.
August 2022 - A Summary
Looking through the top queried phrases by day last month, there were a few topics that surfaced as macro trends. As primary elections happened across different states, candidates and ballot questions landed in the top 3 daily queries. The NFL preseason stoked interest in fans as they searched for their favorite team in Google results. The other big sports topic was Champions League soccer and we’ll present the sheer number of queries related to that European-centric subject. Lastly, there were TV and films that people wanted to learn more about and we’ll examine which ones were the most popular.
A Doodle and a Travolta Curiosity
These two phrases were the only two that made the elusive 10 million plus club last month.
- Anna Mani - 8/22/2022 - 10,000,000+ queries
Google changed their logo on August 23rd to celebrate “the 104th birthday of Indian physicist and meteorologist Anna Mani, one of the country’s first female scientists.” You can read more about her on their post. We tend to see interesting Doodles get top query status as the logo is hyperlinked to a result page tied to a keyword - in this case, “Anna Mani”. The second phrase is a bit of a head scratcher but it’s not unprecedented.
- John Travolta - 8/8/2022 - 10,000,000+ queries
On August 8th, Olivia Newton-John passed away and the news sent people to Google to search. When we first looked at Google's Daily Search Trends, it was her name that was the top query. From our experience, it takes 24 hours for the report to finalize. We have seen queries shift or change completely when we revisit the report after that 24 hour period. When we looked back at the daily top 3 for August 8th on August 10th, the phrase above replaced the Olivia Newton-John query and it was the top queried phrase of the day. The other surprising thing was there were no Olivia Newton-John related phrases in the top 3 at all.
SInce we have been collecting this data for years now, we recalled this same sort of phenomena happening when Kelly Preston, John Travolta's wife, died in 2020. Here’s the top phrase from July 12th of that year:
- John Travolta - 7/12/2020 - 10,000,000+ queries
Again, there are no queries related to Kelly Preston in the daily top three of that day. The phrase that was reported was John Travolta’s name. The AMP team is not sure what to make of this reporting shift. It doesn’t make sense that his name would be a higher queried phrase than either Olivia’s or Kelly’s. It does make us wonder what kind of query consolidation is happening as the Daily Search Trends report gets finalized. Is there a knowledge graph consideration? Does the weight of the John Travolta entity make the report combine related terms underneath it? It’s odd, for sure, and for it to happen twice in the last two years is odder.
Did you know that August has two days that celebrate two of the most popular household pets? We didn’t either.
- CAT - 8/7/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries
- National Dog Day - 8/26/2022 - 200,000+ queries
On International Cat Day, Google implemented a search result “Easter Egg” where the result page for the query “cat” was altered with animation.
Although dogs are certainly more popular than cats nationwide, the enhanced result page helped to drive more search queries for cats on their special day this year.
Martin vs. Tolkien and Other Entertainment
Every month, TV show and movie queries make the daily top 3. AMP likes looking for these phrases to figure out how large the audience is for each. Here are the top movie related keywords from August 2022:
- Batgirl - 8/2/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Prey - 8/3/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Prey - 8/5/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Orphan: First Kill - 8/18/2022 - 200,000+ queries
So, the Batgirl query is a bit of an anomaly since the volume behind it is related to the decision to never release this movie by Warner Bros. People really wanted to know where they could see the latest installment of the Predator franchise, Prey (Hint: Hulu & Disney+) Lastly, the horror film, Orphan: First Kill also received a top 3 query phrase placement on the 18th a day before its release date.
A couple of non-epic fantasy TV shows made our collection. They include a new series about an established character and an awards show:
- Wednesday Netflix - 8/17/2022 - 100,000+ queries
- VMAs 2022 - 8/28/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries
Netflix is producing a TV series about Wednesday Addams, a character from the fictional Addams Family. A trailer for the show was released on the 17th. Also, The MTV Video Music Awards still stir a buzz and search interest in this year’s show drove more than a million queries on the day it aired.
As we alluded to in the previous section, the biggest news for the TV audience was the release of 2 anticipated fantasy shows last month:
- House of Dragon - 8/21/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries
- Rings of Power - 8/31/2022 - 200,000+ queries
From the query volume, it appears that the Game of Thrones prequel series is more popular than the Lord of the Rings prequel series. We’ll keep monitoring to see which show’s season finale makes the daily top 3.
Elections and Federal Acts
With the first wave of elections this year, we saw some queries related to US politics with high volumes last month, if only for a day.
- Liz Cheney - 8/15/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Harriet Hageman - 8/16/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Alaska primary 2022 Results - 8/16/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Mary Peltola - 8/31/2022 - 500,000+ queries
On the 16th, U.S. representative for Wyoming Liz Cheney lost in the Republican primary to Harriet Hageman.The Alaska primary results were also popular as it led to Sarah Palin loss to Mary Petola in the special election to replace the late Rep. Don Young.
The other topics in this category were related to the Kansas special election and two measures moving forward in the Federal government.
- Kansas abortion amendment - 8/2/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Inflation Reduction Act - 8/7/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Student loans - 8/23/2022 - 2,000,000+ queries
Voters in Kansas decided to keep abortion legal in the state. The Inflation Reduction Act getting voted into law and details of the student loan forgiveness program drove people to search.
August 2022’s Sports-Related Queries
Do you know what gets keywords related to the NFL back into Google’s daily search trends? The preseason.
- Raiders - 8/4/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- NFL - 8/4/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Patriots - 8/11/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- 49ers - 8/12/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Zach Wilson - 8/12/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Steelers - 8/13/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Dallas Cowboys - 8/13/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Patriots - 8/19/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- 49ers - 8/20/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- 49ers - 8/25/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Packers - 8/25/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Dallas Cowboys - 8/26/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Chicago Bears - 8/27/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Steelers - 8/28/2022 - 500,000+ queries
Did your favorite team make the list? If so, you’re in good (large) company. Major League Baseball’s season is still going on and a couple of phrases were
- Juan Soto - 8/1/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries
- Field of Dreams Game 2022 - 8/11/2022 - 500,000+ queries
Juan Soto was included in a major trade between the Washington Nationals and the San Diego Padres. The new featured game that takes place near a corn field also drove people to search for more information about it.
If you didn’t think European soccer was popular in the USA, think again.
- Fulham vs Liverpool - 8/6/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Everton vs Chelsea - 8/6/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- West Ham vs Man City - 8/7/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Real Madrid - 8/9/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Real Madrid - 8/13/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Chelsea vs Tottenham - 8/14/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Liverpool vs Crystal Palace - 8/15/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Leeds United vs. Chelsea - 8/21/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Man United vs Liverpool - 8/22/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Champions League draw - 8/24/2022 - 500,000+ queries
- Liverpool vs Bournemouth - 8/27/2022 - 500,000+ queries
Some members of the AMP team have a theory that online sports betting has increased the visibility of the Champions League in this country. Looking at the phrases that are match-related where both teams are included, the checking of scores may be a reason for this query volume.
Finally, Serena Williams’s progress in her last U.S. Open drove people to learn more. She announced her retirement earlier last month.
- Serena Williams - 8/29/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries
Other Topics Worthy of Mention
Working with CPG brands, we monitor search queries for them to keep check on negative sentiment. You hate to see it, but recalls can wreak havoc for a brand. August 2022 was not a good month for Capri Sun Group Holding:
- Capri Sun recall - 8/15/2022 - 200,000+ queries
People were looking to the skies with the full moon and the Aurora Borealis on their minds last month:
- Full moon August 2022 - 8/9/2022 - 200,000+ queries
- Northern Lights - 8/17/2022 - 200,000+ queries
They kept thinking about those skies in anticipation of our continuing mission to the moon
- Artemis launch - 8/28/2022 - 1,000,000+ queries
Maybe someday that rocket will blast off.
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