Knowing how your customers behave and staying ahead of the curve is crucial for any brand aiming for visibility and growth. Google Trends, a free tool by the search engine giant, offers invaluable insights into what your audience is searching for, when, and where. 

Leveraging this data can guide your content strategy, improve SEO, and keep your brand relevant in a rapidly changing market. 

In this article, we’ll delve into the basics of Google Trends. We’ll illustrate its importance as a versatile tool for boosting your brand’s online presence.

Whether you’re a seasoned marketer or just getting started, understanding Google Trends is an asset you must pay attention to.

How to use Google Trends

Google Trends home

Source: Google Trends 

Google Trends is a free online tool provided by Google. It allows users to analyze the popularity of search queries over time. 

The platform offers valuable insights into search volumes, geographical data, and related questions. It helps businesses tailor their strategies to consumer interests and emerging trends.

Now, it’s time to learn how to use Google Trends for your brand. We’ll guide you through it. 

How Google Trends works

Google Trends analyzes data from Google Search and presents it in a user-friendly interface. It shows the popularity of search terms over specified periods and locations. You can filter data by categories, geography, and time range, generating graphs and reports. This robust data allows you to visualize trends and make data-driven decisions.

Where does Google Trends data come from? It comes from web, image, news, Google shopping, and YouTube searches. 

This tool is powerful enough to provide information about virtually anything through the following searches.  

Google Search

Google Search is the core search engine service provided by Google. It allows users to find websites, images, videos, and more based on their queries. This search utilizes complex algorithms to crawl, index, and rank web pages. Users get the most relevant and authoritative results.

screenshot from Google search: high-end makeup in San Jose, CA

Source: Google Search

Google News

Google News is a news aggregation platform owned by Google. It curates articles from various publishers worldwide. The service categorizes news stories based on topics and relevance, providing a real-time feed. You can narrow the results based on user interest and location.

Screenshot from Google News: search: Breaking News where: Washinton D.C.

Source: Google News

YouTube Search

YouTube Search is the search functionality within YouTube. It’s the world’s largest video-sharing platform and belongs to Google. 

Users can search for videos, channels, and playlists using keywords or phrases. The search results offer a customized user experience based on relevance, view count, and other factors.

screenshot from YouTube: search_query=top+running+shoes+2023

Source: YouTube

Pro tip: You can get alerts when specific names and topics appear online. Alerts are especially beneficial when people mention your business. 

How to use Google Trends for SEO

Using Google Trends can substantially boost your SEO efforts. You can enter keywords relevant to your brand or industry to get their search popularity over time. 

Also, you can use the tool to identify seasonal trends or emerging topics. By doing so, you can incorporate these into your content calendar and improve your content’s performance. 

What other benefits can you get from learning to use Google Trends for SEO? You can analyze geographic data to tailor your SEO strategy for specific locations. Also, optimizing for local search is a huge benefit for new and small businesses. 

Let’s go through some in-depth explanations for each action: 

Keyword research

To find high-volume keywords for SEO optimization:

  1. Start by entering your niche-specific keywords.
  2. Review the tool’s search interest over time and related queries.
  3. Identify keywords with high search volumes.
  4. Focus on these keywords in your SEO strategy to improve your website’s visibility.

An extra benefit can be attracting organic traffic.

There are generally two approaches to analyzing keyword data. One examines it over extended durations, and the other examines shorter periods. 

Google Trends allows you to view traffic patterns going back to 2004 and offers valuable insights into audience behavior over time. By doing so, you can identify: 

  • Rising long-term trends.  A consistently rising trend line indicates you should focus your content creation on that topic.
  • Declining long-term trends. If the trend graph is on a steady decline, this could mean a shift in the audience’s interests. 

By learning how trends change, you can plan your marketing strategy accordingly. Using first-hand information about how users search for specific things will set a solid path. 

Gather data about the most relevant keywords and incorporate popular search terms into your content. 

Improve your SEO results by following these tips:

  • In-depth keyword research. Use tools like SEMrush or Ahrefs. Get search volumes and questions related to the keywords you found on Google Trends. 
  • Content planning. Integrate these keywords into your content calendar. Ensure you’re covering trending topics that resonate with your audience.
  • Title optimization. Insert the keyword into the title of your articles or web pages to establish relevancy.
  • Header tags. Use relevant keywords and popular terms in header tags (H1, H2, H3). Break up content and signal importance to search engines.
  • Body text. Use the keywords naturally within the content, avoiding keyword stuffing, which can penalize your SEO.
  • Meta descriptions. Include keywords in the meta descriptions of your pages. Although this doesn’t directly affect SEO, it can improve click-through rates.
  • URL structure. Use the keyword in the page’s URL to make it more search-engine-friendly.
  • Internal linking. Use popular search terms as anchor text in internal links. Link to other articles and landing pages to improve page authority.
  • Content updates. Keep your content updated with popular terms to maintain relevance and SEO value.
  • Localized keywords: Boost local SEO. Incorporate popular search terms and geographic locations for businesses with a local focus. 
  • Image alt text: Use keywords in the alt text of images to make your site more accessible and improve SEO.
  • Track performance. Use analytics tools to track how pages with new keywords perform. Adjust your strategy as needed.

Seasonal trends

Google Trends is an excellent tool for monitoring seasonal fluctuations in keyword popularity. Setting the time range to span many years allows you to identify recurring peaks and discover seasonal trends. 

For example, if you notice that searches for “top summer travel destinations” spike every June, plan relevant content in May. Doing this is a great way to capitalize on ‌interest. 

Also, terms like “cool Halloween costumes” show predictable seasonal patterns. This data can help you plan content and promote your products before the search term trends. 

Google Trends data on "cool Halloween Costumes"

Source: Google Trends

Using this data allows you to schedule your content and promotional activities to match these peaks and will benefit visibility and engagement.

Competitor analysis

Analyze competitors using Google Trends. Enter your competitors’ brand names or related keywords. Compare ‌trends data to identify spikes or consistent interest in their offerings. Examine interests and related queries to uncover their strengths and weaknesses.

Using Google Trends for content marketing

We’ve covered the benefits of Google Trends for identifying popular topics and keywords. Besides that, here’s how to use it for your content creation strategy:

  1. Visit Google Trends. To start your research, navigate to the Google Trends website.
  1. Search for initial keywords. Enter some basic keywords related to your industry or niche. You’ll get a general idea of how those terms trend over time.
  1. Analyze timeframes. Use the ‘Time range’ feature to see whether the keyword is temporary or has interest over time. Doing this can help you decide if the topic has long-term value.
  1. Check regional interest. Google Trends allows you to view search interests by region or country. You’ll need to know this if your brand caters to a localized audience.
  1. Compare keywords. Use the “Compare” feature to analyze multiple keywords simultaneously. You can identify which terms have the highest search volume and are more likely to increase traffic.
  1. Related queries. Scroll down to see related search terms that people are using. These can offer new ideas for topics or alternative keywords you may have yet to consider.
  1. Examine categories and subregions. For a more granular look, filter the trends data by categories like ‘Business’ or ‘Cience.’ You can also filter by subregions within a country.
  1. Seasonal trends. Note any seasonal peaks in search volume for your selected keywords. You can capitalize on this by timing your content accordingly.
  1. Export data. Google Trends allows you to export the data to a CSV file, which can be useful for more in-depth analysis or sharing insights with your team.
  1. Create a content plan. Use the insights gathered to inform your content calendar. Include the trending topics and keywords in upcoming articles, blog posts, or social media campaigns.
  1. Watch and adjust. After your content is live, use analytics to track its performance. If a keyword declines in popularity, you should update the content or focus on a new trending topic.

Google Trends can be a valuable asset in your content creation process. It can help you focus on topics and keywords that resonate with your target audience.

Analyzing audience interests

Google Trends gives valuable insights into the interests and preferences of your target audience. 

  • To analyze them effectively, start by entering relevant keywords or topics. 
  • Explore related queries to uncover specific interests within your niche. 
  • Use the geographic breakdown to understand regional variations. 
  • Observe historical trends to spot seasonal or long-term shifts in preferences. 

This data equips you to create tailored content, marketing campaigns, and products. Content that resonates with an audience drives engagement and growth.

Creating targeted content

Harnessing Google Trends data for targeted content creation involves strategic insights. Take a look at these tips on using this data to create content that resonates with the target audience:

  • Focus on trending topics and keywords that align with your niche or industry. 
  • Time your content releases to match with peak interest periods revealed by the tool.
  • Use regional data to customize content for specific geographic markets. 
  • Explore related queries to identify supplementary content ideas. 
  • Adapt your content strategy as trends evolve, ensuring it remains fresh and resonates with your audience.

Content marketing trends

Google Trends can help you identify current content trends to include in your content marketing strategy

There are benefits of incorporating popular content marketing trends into your brand strategy. 

For example:

  • Relevance. Staying current with trends makes sure your brand remains relevant to your audience. Align your messaging with what’s top of mind for them.
  • Increased engagement. Trendy content catches more attention (likes, shares, and comments) and boosts engagement with your audience.
  • Enhanced visibility. Trend-related content is more likely to appear in search results and social feeds. Appearing in more results increases your brand’s online visibility.
  • Brand authority. Embracing trends shows your industry expertise. It positions your brand as a thought leader.
  • Audience growth. Trend-focused content can attract new followers, expanding your audience base.
  • Improved SEO. Trend-related keywords can improve your search engine rankings. Improved SERP rankings often result in increased organic traffic.
  • Conversion opportunities. Engaged audiences are more likely to convert. More conversions mean increased sales and revenue.
  • Adaptability. Brands that adapt to trends prove flexibility and responsiveness. In today’s ever-changing market, these are great qualities to have. 
  • Customer retention. Trend-conscious brands can keep existing customers. The key is to provide fresh and appealing content consistently.

Incorporating popular content marketing trends can positively impact your brand. Let’s explore some current trends and how you can use Google Trends to enhance each one: 

  • Short videos.  Short videos reveal rising search interest in platforms and formats.
  • Influencer marketing. Influencer marketing uncovers influencers and topics gaining traction. 
  • Mobile optimization. In mobile optimization, it identifies searches for mobile-friendly sites
  • Personalized content. Personalized content shows interest in tailored experiences.
  • Visual storytelling. It reveals popular visuals and storytelling techniques.

Increase your brand’s visibility using Google Trends

A highly visible brand has solid consumer trust and loyalty, creating a solid foundation for long-term success. Increased visibility boosts customer interaction.

With more than 8.5 billion Google searches per day, ‌competition across search results has become fierce. Where hundreds of brands compete for attention, visibility can be the factor that sways consumer choice in your favor.

graphic showing internet search statistics

Source: Internet Live Stats

Investing in strategies to enhance brand visibility is crucial for your business. They deliver short-term gains and long-term sustainability.

What is brand visibility?

Brand visibility is when a brand’s target market sees and recognizes it. You can apply brand visibility strategies across various platforms and touchpoints. Possible options include online search results, social media, advertising channels, and word-of-mouth. 

High brand visibility gives your business or products a top-of-mind image for consumers. This makes them more likely to choose your brand over competitors when purchasing. 

Shopify has created a guide to start using Google Trends for sales. The article provides excellent examples of brands that have improved their offerings using Google Trends. They get search volume and competition metrics to decide which product would sell better‌ — ‌for example, Alexis Jae Jewelry.

Incorporating Google Trends into your brand strategy can boost more than one field. It can benefit website traffic, social media engagement, and brand awareness. 

Brands have successfully tailored their strategies to meet consumer interests. Leveraging real-time or historical data from Google Trends leads to gains in their digital presence. 

Wrapping up

Google Trends is an invaluable tool for enhancing brand visibility. It refines content marketing strategies and optimizes SEO efforts. It offers real-time insights into consumer interests. You can then tailor your content and campaigns to what resonates with your audience. 

As a marketer, you can identify trending topics, seasonal fluctuations, and regional preferences. This way, you’re better equipped to create content that ranks well, engages, and converts. 

Overlooking this tool means missing out on a wealth of data that could drive your brand’s visibility and growth. Incorporate Google Trends into your brand strategy. Stay competitive in today’s fast-paced world of online search!

Content marketing is becoming more popular, so now is an excellent time to learn how to invest in a content strategy for success. This article will explore the concept of content marketing ROI and what businesses should keep in mind while calculating it. 

To determine the ROI of a piece of content, B2B marketers must track key metrics like website traffic, social media engagement, and conversion rates. By analyzing these metrics, you can determine which pieces of content are performing well and which ones need improvement.

Here are some valuable statistics to inform your content marketing strategy for 2023 and beyond.

What is the ROI of content marketing?

ROI – Return On Investment is a standard term in the marketing world. It measures the total profitability created by an investment by comparing gains and losses.

ROI is a fundamental metric for businesses to track. If a company doesn’t see a positive ROI from content marketing, it must reevaluate its strategy.

There are many ways to measure the ROI of content marketing. However, calculating it always involves taking the same three dynamics into account:

  • Inflows – The total return created from a content marketing campaign.
  • Outflows – The total expenditure necessary to run the campaign.
  • Profit – The total difference between inflows and outflows.

In content marketing, ROI doesn’t have to take the form of dollars. Often you can measure it through other, less tangible representations of a brand’s success, like:

Increased customer loyalty

Customer loyalty is essential for businesses that rely on maintaining existing clients or aiming to grow their buyer base. There are a few ways to track this metric, including through repeat purchase rate, loyalty program sign-ups, and monitoring bounce rates through Google Analytics. 

Increased lead generation

Lead generation is the technique of converting strangers or cold prospects into potential customers with interest in your product or service using either an inbound or outbound lead generation strategy. Generating more leads through demand generation can eventually mean a higher conversion rate over time; it’s a common goal among sales-oriented businesses that want to increase their revenue and marketers can track the effectiveness of this strategy using Google Analytics. Effective tactics include lead generation websites, lead management software, sales calls, referrals, and more.

Increased brand awareness

Marketers can even quantify ROI through brand awareness. This metric represents how well your target audience knows and recognizes your brand. 

Surveys that measure Top-of-Mind Awareness (ToMA) or unaided recall can measure brand awareness. 

Besides the ones mentioned above, there are other key performance indicators that provide insight into how customers are responding to campaigns and strategies. 

How to calculate content marketing ROI

Like many other forms of ROI, one can calculate marketing ROI using a standard formula. This equation considers the factors of return and total investment by subtracting the first from the second, dividing it by total investment, and multiplying by 100. The final product is the percentage rate of return achieved through those initial inflow and outflow numbers.

Here’s a formula that SEMRush suggests for calculating content marketing ROI:

Image source: SEMRush

10 content marketing ROI statistics

Now that we’ve gone over what ROI is and how to calculate it, let’s look at some key content marketing ROI statistics for 2023.

1. 33% of content marketers find measurement challenging

Recent research from the Content Marketing Institute indicates that measurement is a notable challenge for content marketers – their third largest at 33%. 

The firm’s B2B Content Marketing Report goes into further detail. The biggest reasons for these challenges include:

  • Difficulty integrating data across multiple platforms (48% of marketers)
  • A lack of organizational KPIs for goal setting (45% of marketers) 
  • Trouble tying performance data back to initial goals (43% of marketers)

It’s an interesting observation regarding the landscape’s current state of affairs. Content marketers need more support regarding data analytics and clarity over their strategic objectives.

Image source: CMI

2. Content marketing is becoming more effective at generating leads

According to a recent survey by the Content Marketing Institute, over 67% of marketers report generating business demand or leads from their content marketing efforts. The number is up by 7% year-over-year. 

The finding backs up the consensus that content has a bright future. Marketers are noticing tangible returns (and bottom-funnel conversions) from this strategy despite measurement challenges.

3. Content marketing has a better ROI than other outbound methods

Research continues to show that content marketing far outpaces its counterparts regarding ROI. 

Recent data from Neal Schaffer is just one example: content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing methods while generating three times as many leads. Content continues to prevail in today’s information-driven world. Content creation should be at the top of the list for your marketing budget in the coming years.

4. Video will be the biggest content marketing investment of 2023

Among forms of digital content, experts see video as the format set to dominate in 2023. According to the Content Marketing Institute’s B2B Content Marketing Report, video will lead the way over other forms of media, up from an already-high 69% last year.

These findings make sense —  amid the rise of platforms like TikTok. Users are more engaged in video content than ever. Instagram has even recognized this trend and jumped on it with the addition of its new ‘Reels’ feature. 

What this means for content marketers is the need for a targeted video strategy that they can distribute across multiple channels for maximum reach. Consider your existing capabilities and how you can invest in them further – doing so will likely pay off in the years to come.

Image source: CMI 

5. Marketers who spend between 10–70% of their budgets on content marketing see the greatest success

SEMRush has released new data suggesting that businesses that spend 10% to 70% of their marketing budgets are “very successful.” Nearly 75% of content marketing companies say their efforts have paid off well, which supports the idea that a good investment is key to success.

While the study doesn’t go into further detail on what “very successful” means regarding ROI or conversions, it’s safe to say that a more significant investment leads to better results. As the old saying goes, you must spend money to make money!

6. 50% of marketers are going to increase their content marketing budgets in 2023

The Content Marketing Institute ‌recently surveyed marketers to learn how they plan to divide their spending in the next year. 

50% of respondents plan to increase content marketing budgets in 2023, up from the previous year. This shows that content strategy is here to stay.

7. 60% of content marketers measure the success of their social media activity via sales

Marketers can measure ROI in several ways. Data from HubSpot’s 2022 State of Marketing Report suggests that most professionals are using the same method to gauge the success of their social media activity: sales.

In a survey of more than 1,000 marketing professionals, 60% said that they measure the success of their social media efforts based on whether it leads to sales. 

This number has increased over the past few years. More and more professionals see a direct correlation between their content marketing and their bottom line, sometimes partnered with the sales team. 

Image source: Hubspot

8. Short and long-form video content will get a boost in 2023

Not only is the general popularity of video content rising, but we can expect to see its long and short forms continue to grow. According to Hubspot, 29% of marketers plan to increase their investment in long-form content over the coming year. An even larger 51% intend on doing so for short-form media. 

It’s no surprise, given the recent popularity of platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels. The takeaway? Invest in video content – and be prepared to do so in various formats.

Image source: TikTok for Business

9. 87% of content marketers prioritize audience needs over promotional messaging

Marketing professionals recognize that 81% of retail shoppers research before buying. Recent survey data indicates that 87% of content marketers prioritize creating material that meets the needs of their audience over promotion. 

The number has been steadily increasing over the past few years as businesses continue to shift their focus from selling to serving their audiences through digital content.

10. Paid distribution investment has decreased year-on-year

Digital content can spur organic growth –something that comes to light when examining your dashboards on Google Analytics. And as more and more businesses turn to it as a primary means of marketing, investments in paid forms of distribution have dropped. According to research from the Content Marketing Institute, paid content distribution has decreased by 14% year-over-year, down to 67% from 2021’s 81%.

What does this mean for the future of content marketing? It’s hard to say for sure.

However, as the strategy matures, we expect to see a continued focus on quality over quantity and an increased reliance on organic growth.

10 ways to improve your content marketing ROI

There’s no doubt that content is an essential piece of any modern marketing strategy. But as with any investment, it’s necessary to ensure you get a good return on your content marketing spend.

Here are 10 ways to improve your content marketing ROI:

1. Create high-quality content

While this one may seem like a no-brainer, it’s easy to overlook when you get caught up in the excitement of strategy. But the truth is, no matter how you slice it, content marketing only works if you create material worth reading (or watching or listening to).

2. Update your content regularly

Keeping content up-to-date is just as important as protecting its quality. You could publish a fantastic, in-depth series of blog posts on any subject, but‌ audiences (and Google’s SEO algorithms) won’t see value in it unless it’s relevant.

3. Create tailored content for each stage of the buyer’s journey

One size doesn’t fit all in content marketing. The material you create for someone just starting to learn about your industry will be very different from the content you create for someone ready to purchase.

4. Level up your video content

The popularity of video content is on the rise, which means that now is the perfect time to invest in your ability to create it. Maybe this means getting better cameras, making more detailed plans, or adding more editing flair. 

Enhancing the quality of your video content will give you a leg up over others getting started with the strategy.

5. Repurpose your content

Repurposing content is a great way to get more mileage out of the material you create. For example, you could turn a blog theme into a series of social media templates, create a video from a whitepaper, or an infographic from data you’ve already collected.

Image source: Envato Elements

6. Optimize your content

A lot of the time, marketers already have tons of ideas and collateral they could use to drive their ROI — if only they knew how to optimize it. Make sure you’re using the right keywords, tagging your content correctly, and sharing it in the right places to make sure your target audience is seeing it.

In terms of blog content, long-form articles that are in-depth and informative tend to do better in search engines, while shorter blog posts that are easy to skim perform better on social media platforms.

7. Create internal and external links

Linking to other websites (external linking) can show search engines that your site is a valuable resource, which can improve your ranking. But remember to link to your site (internal linking)! 

Internal links can help users navigate your website more efficiently and keep them engaged with your brand.

8. Promote your content through social media

When it comes to content marketing success, B2B marketers have to be strategic about the B2B data they acquire and the type of content they produce and where they publish it. It’s no longer enough to create a single piece of content and share it on all social media platforms. Instead, you must create and adjust different pieces of content for different platforms, and measure key social media metrics to determine which ones are most effective.

For instance, interactive content such as quizzes, surveys, and polls tend to perform better on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, while visual content like infographics, videos, and images are better suited for Instagram and Pinterest.

Social media and email are two of the most powerful content marketing tools at your disposal — make the most of them in every way you can. 

9. Exchange content with reputable sources

Suppose you’re looking for ways to get your content in front of new audiences. Consider partnering with other companies or websites in your industry. You could exchange blog posts, create joint webinars, or simply share each other’s content on social media.

10. Partner with other content creators

There’s no need to go it alone regarding content marketing. If you need help to come up with ideas or create high-quality content, consistently, consider partnering with another content creator. 

A co-creator can be someone in-house or an outside contractor. You can research their pages for strategic content marketing examples and inspiration. 

In conclusion, content marketing is a critical component of any successful marketing strategy. To ensure success, marketers must create different pieces of content for different platforms and track key metrics to measure their ROI. By doing so, they can optimize their content marketing efforts and drive more leads, sales, and revenue for their business.

The world of content marketing is ever-changing, yet one thing remains constant: the importance of ROI. You can ensure the results you need by staying up-to-date on the latest content marketing trends and best practices.