Any SEO will tell you that tools are incredible. But tools are only as good as far as you know how to use and apply them.
In this episode, Nate and Brett dive deep with Google Trends and Google Correlate; discussing not only how to use them, but also how to apply insights to marketing and SEO campaigns.
- What Google Trends & Google Correlate are
- Using Trends/Correlate for Keyword Research
- Using Trends/Correlate for Understanding Personas & Buyer Journeys
- Using Trends/Correlate for Trending Topics
- Productivty Tips for Correlate/Trends
Brett Snyder: Hello there and welcome to Episode Number 27 of your Bamboo Chalupa Digital Marketing Podcast. My name is Brett Snyder. I am the president of Knucklepuck. I am joined by my co-host Nate Shivar, the author of ShivarWeb.com.
Nate Shivar: Hello, hello.
Brett Snyder: Regular listeners of the podcast will know that we spend a lot of time talking about strategy, but we also lean on the tools that we use to enable that strategy. As any SEO will tell you, Nate and myself included, tools are amazing. Professional SEOs simply could not do our jobs without our tools. We got our well known ones. We’ve talked Screaming Frog a number of times. Search Console previously known as Webmaster Tools. We’ve got our backlink checkers of choice, your Open Site Explorer, your Majestic SEO, or your Ahrefs.
Every SEO leans on Keyword Planner for keyword research, but the good ones leverage more advanced tools like KeywordTool.io, Soovel, Keyword Shutter, even some paid tools like SEMrush. Having access to the tool only goes so far. For a tool to make a difference, you need to know not only how to use it, but also how to apply the data and insights to your particular website, your business and industry, and your campaigns.
Today, we want to talk about a tool that some of you may be familiar with, and then a close cousin of that tool under what Nate and I will call the same tool suite that most people probably have never heard of. We’re talking about Google Trends and its close cousin Google Correlate.
Nate Shivar: You’ve probably heard of Google Trends, and like Brett said, maybe Google Correlate. Google Trends, it’s a pretty well known PR tool for Google. It’s what they use to create their what the world searched for in 2014 or 2015 every year. They use it to create the Google Zeitgeist. Journalists are known for using it in their pieces on politics or news. Right now I know journalists are using it to track to see how many people are searching for the different republican candidates for president. It’s fairly well known in public and marketers will use it.
What we’re going to do is to dive deep into less publicized functionality in Google Trends and how you can use those sort of hidden gems of functionality for your marketing. In the same way that Google Trends has some of this less publicized functionality, like Brett said, there’s a cousin of Google Trends which is Google Correlate. You can tell from its website that it is not as well loved as Google Trends. It’s pretty old school design. It actually pulls from the same data source that Google Trends pulls from, from Google Search Volume. It’s best known for creating the flu trends report and some other niche reports in academia. It really isn’t well known among the public much less among marketers and how to use it for your website, your business.
Brett Snyder: Nate has actually done a ton of research on Google Correlate, posted an incredible post up on ShivarWeb, that we’ll link to in the show notes, but really we want to talk about this idea as Nate mentioned it pulls from the same data source. Any time that you have an opportunity to leverage data directly from Google that pulls in peoples search activity, that pulls in changes or trends in search volume, that can be an immensely powerful tool as we’ve talked about for marketing, but also for your business. Some of the examples that we’re going to give you here are actually talking about how do you determine when to do your outreach.
How do you determine what products that you want to sell? What are potential emerging markets for you to go investigate in terms of actually developing products to meet a particular need? How can you understand the persona of your target customer down to the types of books they read or the type of car that they drive. There’s an immense amount of information and it does take a little bit of attention to be able to learn how to extract this information, but that’s what we’re here to talk about.
Nate Shivar: We need to start out with being absolutely clear about what these tools do. Like Brett said, they analyze Google web searches over a certain period of time, but what they do, they analyze these terms as a percentage of all searches. For example, if you search in Trends for T in Scotland in March of 2007 to 2015, Google takes all the searches that were performed in Google over that time period in Scotland and it will tell you what percentage of those searches were for T. The distinction that a lot of people get confused on is they’ll see an upward trend or downward trend for T in this situation and they’ll assume that all search volume is declining or it’s increasing, that’s not exactly true. It’s more of a T’s share of total search volume is increasing or decreasing. Even though the absolute volume may be staying the same, if you throw in new and rapid interests in products like an iPhone or the S6 that are taking up a larger and larger percentage of searches relative to those, T might be declining. It’s really important to remember that it’s a relative number and not a absolute number.
Brett Snyder: An easy way to remember that is that tools that we’re more familiar with like the Keyboard Planner will give you insights into search volume. A tool like Keyword Trends gives you insights into search activity. It actually shows you how people in either a specific market as Nate mentioned Scotland in March of 2007, or you can go an entire year, you can see how things trend over time. It’s targeted at the search activity around a particular query, not so much the search volumes.
Nate Shivar: Right, and the other thing to keep in mind is that Google Trends adjusts search data to make comparisons easier. For example, among countries particularly would throw off a lot of things where the population of Britain is a lot less than United States, so Unavale would’ve make easy comparisons across geography. Otherwise, India would have the most search volume all the time. To do this, each data point is divided by the total number of searches of a specific geography, US state, country, and the time range it represents. Those numbers are scaled from a range from 0 to 100.
Brett Snyder: When we talk about this idea of scale, that means that there will never be search activity, as we’re calling it, greater than a hundred on Google Trends. As you get closer to a hundred, that’s talking about about as full saturation as you can get relative to the other types of queries.
One of the things to highlight, just to kind of go back just a second for another tool on Google Trends, is this idea of trending searches. They have rising or breakout searches. Where to actually highlight those queries that significantly change in terms of the traffic among all searches over the past 24 hours, and it updates on an hourly basis. You can start to use trending searches to see in pretty close to real time what people are most interested in at any given time and how these different queries will rank in terms of relative search activity compared to one another.
As we mentioned, Google Trends is one that a lot of folks are probably more familiar with, but the same data set is available and processed slightly differently in a tool called Google Correlate. You can almost think about Google Correlate as Google Trends in reverse. Rather than producing results based on the keyword, it generates your results based on a pattern of that search activity.
Nate Shivar: This is most widely well known in the flu trends report where Google will track searches for running nose, or chills, or any of the symptoms related to flu. Those search patterns will correlate, they’ll be the same as searches for flu and the actual increase in flu across search volume and geography. By aligning those search patterns, you can make conclusions that arise in searches for running nose, chills, et cetera will match the same search pattern as the flu. Therefore, the flu must also be increasing.
Brett Snyder: What’s interesting about this tool is it really kind of puts you into the mindset that we need to have to be successful SEOs. We can’t make people search for things. Remember that it’s something that I say to clients all the time. I can’t make people search for keyword phrases that you want to call your product, but what we can do is we can understand the types of queries that people are using in a search engine and then how those queries align with your particular product or service.
When we talk about Google Correlate, people aren’t looking for sniffles. They’re not searching for sniffles, to stay with this flu trends example. They’re not searching for these symptoms if they don’t have … I don’t know about you guys, but I don’t just sit at home and start Googling random medical symptoms of a condition that I don’t have. I also don’t necessarily know exactly what I have right now. I don’t know that it’s the flu. I don’t know if it’s the flu versus if it’s actually a sinus cold. I’m starting to Google the things that make sense to me, my individual symptoms.
What Google Correlate is able to do is they’re able to say, okay, now since they have activity on these symptoms, they see activity on the actual flu itself, they’re able to tie these together and say we see a strong correlation between these particular symptoms and the time, place, and degree to which people search for these queries. We can tie that back with a fairly high degree of confidence to this idea that this is correlated to the flu. Now we have some trends that we can say by using these patterns, as Nate mentioned, by using these patterns we can actually identify and almost foresee what the pattern is designed to communicate to us.
Let’s talk about how to use these tools. We’re going to use them for a couple of different applications here. One of the first things that we want to talk about something that I know Nate had been asked this in a number of interviews, especially lately where you know what is your SEO strategy? What is like that key foundational element of your SEO strategy, be it content, be it link building, what have you? Nate, not to put words in your mouth, but I’ve read these interviews and it’s always comes down to extensive keyword research.
Nate Shivar: Oh yeah, and what a lot of people think of from extensive keyword research is just they keep finding different modifiers for the same terms over, and over, and over. Just keep drilling deeper and deeper. They think of it as using Keyword Planner more or using Übersuggest more, but I think the best key to researching and when I talk about extensive keyword research is the importance of thinking laterally. Jumping from the keyword that you know describes your product to keywords that are immediately related or almost synonymous with the one that you know of and that you can use to inform the actual content on your site.
Brett Snyder: I think that’s an important distinction here. I think that’s something where I know I’ve fallen victim to this as well, where you start to look for something like shoes, you say, “Oh, I want to have brown shoes, or dress shoes, or shoes for wedding.” At the end of the day somebody’s not searching specifically for that word shoes, my keyword research is not getting me in front of any alternative audiences here. If we start to look at, okay well we have shoes, but if we’re talking about women’s shoes, maybe we have flats, maybe we have ballet slippers, maybe we have sandals, maybe we have wedges or heels. As I’m sure everybody can notice, my wife has been on a shoe kick lately, so I see all these different types of shoe names, but you start to think about [inaudible 00:12:10] kind of synonymous terms. Terms that are still … They are still shoes. They’re still discussing the types of product or service that you offer, but people are using much more specialized language to look for exactly what they are searching for.
Nate Shivar: Google Correlate is actually perfectly suited to solving this problem because keywords that you know of, if they’re for the same audience, the same product, they will almost always share the same search pattern as related or a synonymous terms. For example, if you type in mittens in Google Correlate, that’s going to have a certain search pattern. It’s going to go down Summer, increase in the Winter. What Google Correlate does it looks for terms that have the highest correlation to that, to mittens.
What Correlate turns up, if you do the search, it will turn up heated terms, like heated gloves and glove liners. In addition to terms that you may be able to guess like wool mittens. What you’re able to do is move out of the mittens, wool mittens, red mittens, sort of silo and jump into very, very related almost synonymous terms, but different terms like heated gloves, glove liners, and those types of terms. Which turns out, if you go over to Keyboard Planner, heated gloves and glove liners, they have an average of 20,000 searches a month compared to mittens which has 40,000 average searches a month. If you had stuck with this mitten silo of key research, you would be missing out on 50% of the search volume that you could have, that you could add to in you Keyword Map or your content, whatever you’re using to target that term.
Brett Snyder: What this tool really at the end of the day allows us to do is it allows us to kind of evolve with the changing landscape of the business world in general. We talked in one of our earliest episodes about specializations in marketing. Specialization is something that is ubiquitous across any industry. You’re starting to see much more intense specialization in medicine, specialization in law. You start to have even we talk about people are no longer even just SEOs.
SEO used to be a specialization within marketing, now we have people who specifically outreach coordinators. We have community managers. We have content managers. We have inbound marketing directors. All these different specializations under SEO. What Google Correlate really does is specialization is not specific to the business side of these relationships. It’s also on the consumer side. There’s specialization in language. There’s the ways people are actually going to refer to specific products. There are ways we can almost hammer down going from through the funnel from a broad term to more specific, to ultimately the final term that we want to search for because there’s specialized language that is used to refer to all of these products and services.
The key to remember, especially if a lot of the folks who are regular listeners or more on the either on the business or on the agency side of things, where you need to understand where that specialization lies with your audience. This is not something where you dictate the specialization how people refer to your products. You have an opportunity to influence that, of course, but understanding what people are searching for, as we talked about a couple minutes ago, because we can’t make people search, all we can do is make sure that we are present for the variations in language that our audience is already using to search through Google or Yahoo or Bing.
Nate Shivar: I think the Google Trends rising searches that you mentioned earlier plays perfectly into that. If you’re looking into a very broad term that you’re not particularly familiar with, let’s say you’re doing keyword research for a water purification company, they sell water purification filters and what not. If you’re not especially familiar with that, it’s hard to figure out what matters to people right now. That’s exactly the kind of data that if you go over to Google Trends and look at rising searches, it will tell you. It will tell you what are terms related to water purification that are break out, that are rapidly rising.
A lot of times you’ll see brands or specific problems, but Google Trends also has a couple features that people don’t realize exist when it comes to keyword research. That’s one, it has the auto-suggest functionality that Google search has. If you start typing in something, it will suggest related search terms, but it will also suggest related categories because the functionality that I discovered is that
Google Trends pulls in knowledge graph data and it maps search terms to knowledge graph topics. If you know your search term is water purification, you might discover through the auto-suggest and through the related searches that there’s a bigger category over here or there’s a related category like in this case nano purification. Which turns out to be a discipline and a technique within the field of water purification that is really hot right now. Being able to jump laterally into that trending, rising search will give you a window into the sort of specialization that you would have otherwise never discovered.
Brett Snyder: All right, so moving past kind of keyword research, which is really at the end of the day a means to an end. Those keywords that language is a means for businesses and consumers to connect through the search engine. Once we’ve kind of identified the key phrases that we want to target, it really comes down to understanding the priorities and the buying journey of our consumers. Using tools like Trends and Correlate, allows us to understand what terms are at the top for a given topic or search term. Understanding that can help us set the priorities and other lines of research into what actually makes that consumer tick.
What is going to drive them to convert? What are their wants, their needs, their desires? Where do they live? Where are they interested in? What are their other priorities outside specific topic that we may be searching for. What books do they like to read? What movies do they want to go visit? What’s they’re political leanings? Understanding all these kind of subtleties about our audience and developing what we’ll refer to as personas about that audience allows us to be much more specific and much more targeted in the way that we create our content, the way we create our off-page campaigns. Really everything that goes into a comprehensive SEO initiative. Understanding the persona of our target audience, their priorities, their wants, their needs, but also the buyer journey that they typically follow gives us a wealth of information to be able to present a highly targeted campaign that is going to drive specific users to a specific conversion point that we want them to reach.
Nate Shivar: In Google Trends, I think how it aggregates searches with knowledge graph topics is even beyond the keywords and the keyword thread that you can follow. It gives you a window into what that audience is caring about as a whole. You can use the top and the rising searches to give you insight into where the real interest is within that topic.
For example, if you search for the topic baseball within Google Trends, you’ll find out that the USSSA is driving a huge amount, almost all the growth for that overall topic. If you look at some of the search terms, you’ll see a lot of the fantasy terms and some of the bigger terms like baseball bats, baseball gloves. If you’re, say, you’re running a baseball retailer, the fantasy terms aren’t what you need to know. The general terms you don’t need to know that. People are looking for baseball bats and baseball gloves. You’re trying to figure out who is buying that.
The fact that the USSSA is driving so much of the growth within the overall topic baseball gives you a window into your audience, which is going to be high schoolers and amateur baseball leagues, which the USSSA turns out to be. It turns out to be that they’re the one of the fastest growing associations. One of the fastest growing amateur leagues, and knowing that is huge because that can tell you that you need to sell equipment that’s compliant with their rules and not with another baseball leagues rules. You need to be able to make sure that your copy is updated to address the concerns of that league because I know from my experience in high school, every amateur league, every little league, every high school had different rules about what bats were legal, what you could and couldn’t have as material.
You should explore different ways to appeal to that audience segment. That might be sponsoring a league or sponsoring a team near you. That might be getting in touch with that organization and seeing how you can partner with them. That window in Google Trends just looking at it with the persona “I” can really give you a leg up and give you specific insight into your audience and your persona.
Brett Snyder: I think you hit on a great point there Nate that I want to kind of reiterate, reinforce here is that we’ve talked a lot up to this point about using these tools to dictate content. To dictate what you’re going to put on your website. What products you should sell. What content or blog posts or product pages you should produce, but the second half of what you were saying there, and I want to make sure that really comes through to our listeners here, is that you also could influence the types of relationships that you want to build from an off-page perspective. Where do you want to go and look for …
We talk about one of the key premises of off-page research is understanding where your audience is going that isn’t your website and then having a presence on that website. Using Trends and Correlate really helps you understand the types of interests and the types of groups that your audience is a part of, so that way you can go and investigate those specific groups for linking opportunities, sponsorships as you mention. Whether you want to actually get involved with the organization itself. Whether you want to run a particular campaign targeted to that. Maybe a co-branding initiative or digital PR campaign with that particular organization. It influences not only the content that you want to produce for your site, but gives you insights into the most valuable relationships that you can curate that will be of … that will have the most impact on that target audience.
Nate Shivar: What’s awesome about Google Trends, Google Correlate is a lot of times they’ll work together. An insight that you can pull from Trends, you can plug into Google Correlate and see what are other terms and ideas that correlate with that same concept. In Google Correlate, one of the things that people will complain about or they’ll dismiss the two all together is that sometimes it gives you very noisy data. We’ve all heard that correlation does not equal causation. A lot of the times there will be terms that Google Correlate will throw out that don’t seem to make a lot of sense.
They’ll look like they’re just kind of meaningless. I think looping in the concept of personas and looking at keywords through the concept of persona can bring out insights that you would have never otherwise found with Google Correlate.
For example, let’s say you have a gardening website and you found out from Trends that tomatoes are hot. A lot of people are interested in growing tomatoes, but if you take growing tomatoes and you plug it into Google Correlate, you’ll actually get a lot of very seemingly random data. Google Correlate, it will spit out how to grow tomatoes, growing tomatoes. Those make sense, but it also spits out terms like midsize truck, online home school, baby chicken, lyrics, Amazing Grace, and also it’ll tell you that growing tomatoes is a really increasing share of search volume in the Southern and Midwestern part of the United States. A lot of people, they’ll look at that terms then they’re like, “Okay, you know, I don’t care about lyrics, Amazing Grace. I don’t care about baby chickens. I don’t care about online home school.”
If you’re trying to create a persona about who is coming to your gardening website and you’re looking at this through the lens of a persona, that will allow you to start to tell a story that loops all those terms together. If you think your audience is say an urbanite living in a big city who they’re growing their tomatoes in a vertical garden or the sunroof, you might be wrong because if you look at these terms, the persona that loops all these together is a mom in the rural Southeast or Midwest who, they drive a pickup truck. They have a lot of land. They’re into very conservative Christianity. They have a very DIY streak. All these terms, even though you may not create content around it, it gives you a window into who they are, what problems they have. Their problems with growing tomatoes are going to be very different than someone in the city. They’re going to have a lot of land, a lot of sunlight. Again, even thought you might not create terms around lyrics, Amazing Grace, or online home school, it gives you that window.
Brett Snyder: Let’s take that even a little bit further here. It let’s you understand what … It helps you disqualify certain topics as well. Again, you’re not going to talk about this. They’re not concerned with space. We’re not trying to say how do you grow tomatoes with a five by five foot space. That gives us some insights into that. We talk about different weather patterns that might exist in the Northeast versus the Midwest. If there’s a drought in the Midwest, but there’s not a drought in Manhattan, writing about content that says, “Hey, how do you, you know, we have too much rain.” It gives you some additional insights into what your audience, what drives your audience outside of the specific query that key into the search engine.
Nate Shivar: The last thing we can talk about with personas is how people’s buyer journeys go out. How they move from being aware of a product or service into actually purchasing. Different people are going to have different problems move through that marketing funnel in different ways. That’s something that Google Correlate has this time shift feature that allows you to shift the correlation with your target term to the weeks before or after, and so-
Brett Snyder: This is, and not to interrupt, but this is something that if our listeners take one thing out of this, this is I think probably the most powerful feature here. That was a great post by one of our favorite people to say here is the folks over at Siege Media. Where they just talked about a couple weeks ago, publishing when should you pitch bloggers for a content series or for an outreach in a link building series. One of the examples that Nate puts in his article as well is if you’re going to do outreach in December for the holiday season, you’re going to have a bad time because the outreach must be done in advance of that.
Using a tool like Google Correlate let’s you understand when that optimum sweet spot is to actually pitch these off-page references. When to publish your content. When to do the promotion, so that you can get the visibility as that traffic is rampping up, as opposed to just saying, “Hey, we’re already at the peak. Oh, now we know people are looking for it.” In the time it takes you to produce it, to promote it, the trends may be already starting to decline. This time shift series is one of the most powerful elements of Google Correlate and directly influences the timing through which you should run your campaigns.
Nate Shivar: It’s most useful for seasonal businesses or businesses that have events through out the year that gives a very specific time period that you can use as an anchor. For example, Halloween. I like to give an example and I give this example in the post where the searches for Halloween costumes just rocket up basically the few days before Halloween. If you’re a retailer, it is incredibly hard to break through the noise and to get sales for people in just a couple days for Halloween. It will be much, much better if they were aware of your existence in the weeks leading up to Halloween.
If you use Google Correlate and you shift the time period to two weeks back, you’ll find out that while people are not looking for Halloween costumes, you’ll see a lot in the parents segment. People who are planning a little bit more for Halloween, that are aware that Halloween is coming up. They’re looking for Halloween crafts, Halloween ideas, Fall ideas. That gives you a window into these people are aware of Halloween. I can get in front of them if I help them solve their Halloween craft problems. If you move back just a little bit further, if you move back four weeks, you’ll see that there’s the same search patter, but just shifted back four weeks for Fall festivals and Fall events. Basically, people planning their month of October, which could rapidly fill up with events and things to do. This gives you a way to get in front of people before they get busy, before they get running around looking for a Halloween costume in a panic couple days before. It allows you to get in front of them, solve their problems, and they become aware of you before they actually need your product.
Brett Snyder: In a lot of ways these are more valuable consumers because they’re the ones who are taking the time to make much more conscious decisions about their buying journey. They’re the people who want to have maybe coordinated costumes. Maybe they’ve got several kids who they’re going out to a more specifically themed party. People who are searching for these in advance, are the ones that are going to be much more conscious over the decisions that they’re going to make. They’re going to research. Anybody who owns a holiday store knows people are going to scramble as it gets towards Halloween. You don’t need a tool like Google Correlate to tell you that on October 29th, people who don’t have a costume are going to start realizing, “Oh shit, the party’s on Saturday. I need a costume.” You don’t need a tool like Correlate to tell you that Halloween traffic is going to spike in the two days before Halloween.
What we like to talk about one of the things that we try to give everybody here on this podcast are ways to be able to separate yourselves from the herd, to take advantage of some of these more subtle opportunities, to be able to target a much more specific segment of your audience, but a much more highly engaged segment of that audience.
Nate Shivar: Right and again, this doesn’t just work for seasonal businesses. You just have to find … Drop in any term that has any sort of cycle into Google Correlate and it will give you a some sort of buyer journey. I mean if you drop in Payday Loan, which is sort of the penultimate term for, “Oh shit, I need this right now.” You’ll find out that even that has a certain buyer cycle in Google Correlate. If you set that back two weeks, you’ll see loan for bad credit or you’ll see car title loan. You’ll see people trying to solve money crunch problems before it comes up to I need to get a loan with my paycheck. It works for any industry. There’s going to be a lot of noise, but the fact that a free tool exists to give you this window into how people buy and how they … What things they’re interested in leading up to your product or service is extremely powerful.
Brett Snyder: Let’s talk a little bit about some of the alternative features. I think we’ve got everybody on board that this is extremely valuable as a way to understand who your audience is and what language they use to search for products. Whether it’s the direct end point, we’ll call our final attribution that they actually purchase with or more of their research. Their interest terms at that top of funnel.
Let’s talk a little bit about some of these other features. One of the ones that I really like is the Google Trends Explorer. Which allows you to kind of filter by any number, not any number, but a large number of valuable criteria here. You can filter by country, a time range, a specific category or search type. This is extremely valuable in being able to take general trends data and being able to modify it to fit your particular circumstances.
Nate Shivar: Within Google Correlate, it can also be used to find trending topics, but the trick is that in Google Correlate you just need a anchor. You need a search pattern that is already trending. You can do this in a couple ways. You can take topics that you already know are trending and search for that in Google Correlate and it will match terms to that pattern. For example, if you search for bullet proof coffee, which is a hip trending thing that I read about the other day, Google Correlate will show that almond nails and coconut oil and Android emojis are all trending right now at the same rate. You can use this if you run a general interest website and you’re just looking for trending topics. If you’re looking to newsjack, I think is a tactic that we’ve talked about in the past. This is something that can just trigger a lot of ideas to keep you on the forefront of things that are hot.
Brett Snyder: As to mention, newsjacking is really just taking advantage of popular topics. Things people are already searching for and being able to try to take advantage of that for your brand.
For example, I think we even talked about it in our last episode, where when Hilary Clinton’s emails were, this idea that Hilary Clinton was using a private Blackberry to send government emails. Blendtec, one of our favorite case studies, actually did a campaign around can you blend Hilary Clinton’s emails. They were able to jump on a topic people are already searching for and try to redirect people to think about their product associated with these trending events.
Nate Shivar: The other way to find trending events in Google Correlate is to simply draw a pattern. They have this search by drawing where you can draw what ever search pattern you want across whatever time range you want and just see what search patterns match. I found it really interesting to basically draw a pattern that has an uptick, and then a plateau, and then starts to trend up again. Try it yourself. See what it comes up with.
The last thing I’ll mention is that you can always look at geography. Instead of comparing by time range, you can do correlation by geography. This will give you strong insight into how different searches, different topics are trending by location, which actually can be extremely informative. Not just if you’re a local business, but also if you’re a national business and trying to focus you’re efforts on where it’s going to matter. For example, before we recorded, I was doing a search for chicken and waffles, and Southern food in general. Which in Atlanta, it’s the new hot thing among all the top restaurants. I had a friend of mine who is from the Northeast who’d also thought it was trending too. If you plug that into Google Trends and actually Google Correlate, you’ll find out that it’s actually a very limited trend. It’s pretty much limited to Chicago, Phoenix, and Atlanta, Charlotte, and a few other small cities. It’s not a broad national trend that everyone is jumping on board. If you’re trying to find that kind of insight, use Trends and Correlate to figure it out.
Brett Snyder: Now that we’ve got everybody on board with how valuable Google Trends and Google Correlate can be, we want to give you some final quick hitting tips and takeaways that can help improve your productivity. One, Google Trends does allow you to create email alerts of rising searches. You don’t constantly have to be searching for these manually. You can actually set this to be able to deliver these insights to your inbox at your convenience. Google Trends also has RSS feeds for these top charts, allowing you to stay on top of these things again without having to manually go in and search every time. You can set up the RSS feeds for your top charts to receive that email in the way, in real time, in the way that is most convenient for you. As Nate talked about, Google Correlate allows you to draw a pattern. If you’re trying to identify trending topics, definitely take advantage of this opportunity to draw a pattern to be able to extract those insights for you.
Lastly, Google Correlate does offer a CSV export and links to Google search in the results screen. You can always go in and look this and say, “I don’t understand what type of search results that this potential, this allegedly correlated term would generate.” You don’t have to go and search for all of that. They make it really quick and easy for you to go ahead and search for that right from the dashboard. You can also do a CSV export, which I know for somebody like me, who my keyword research and my research approach is really collect all the information possible and then narrow it down. Having the CSV export has saved me a lot of time and a lot of frustration to be able to work in a process for me that I want to, like I said, gather as much raw data as possible, and then whittle it down to something that’s going to be actionable for my particular campaign.
Nate Shivar: You can find previous episodes, links to things that we mention, and our contact information at BambooChalupa.com. If you don’t want to miss another episode, go subscribe to the podcast in iTunes or your favorite podcast app. While you’re there, please leave a comment and rating. We learn a lot from your feedback and your ratings help others to discover the show, so for Brett Snyder, I’m Nate Shivar. Thank you for listening.